Applying the Scientific Method to your Behavioral Marketing

Scientific Method? Hey, I’m a Conversion Scientist

As you learned in a previous post, I’m just wired to see the world through the scientific method. It get’s extreme.

In this month’s ClickZ Behavioral Marketing Experts column, I apply it to behavioral advertising. The thing I love about the scientific method is that it quickly exposes the challenges in your marketing campaign. Behavioral Marketing is a Conversion Scientists dream, but it poses some challenges when developing hypotheses and figuring out “why” something worked or didn’t work.

Applying the Scientific Method to your Behavioral Marketing

Behavioral marketing vendors are not alone in the struggle to communicate effectively via the Web. One area crucial to success is the human dimension. This is the thing missing from these sites. They don’t answer the human questions:

  • Who will I deal with?
  • What is the process of starting, implementing, and reviewing my campaigns?
  • How often will I interact with the team? What will they tell me?
  • How much hand-holding can I expect?
  • Can I trust your team? Why?

When I say: “Transparency”

I mean: “Tell me about how you communicate with me, and I’ll fret less about the technology.”

The bottom line: don’t just ask your behavioral advertising partner about their technology, methodology and ad network. Ask about the ways they interface with you to ensure you’re getting the best information when investigating, hypothesizing, testing and evaluating.

I invite vendors to tell me what you mean in the comments.

Applying the Scientific Method to your Behavioral Marketing

Applying the Scientific Method to your Behavioral Marketing

The Language of Behavioral Marketing, Part 1

Why is it so difficult to figure out the differences among behavioral marketing vendors? Let’s start by dissecting the vendors’ Web sites.

Since working to learn about the behavioral marketing industry, I find myself floating on a sea of ambiguity, still looking for islands of meaning. Over the past five months, I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing a number of industry luminaries. I’ve heard the panels at a major online marketing conference. I subscribe to the industry newsletters. Yet, I find myself without a favorite technique, a “wow” vendor or technology I just have to try. Like most marketers, I can’t devote my full attention to exploring behavioral marketing.

There appears to be some amazing solutions on the market, but I don’t know enough yet to organize my explorations. Whenever I find myself struggling at something, I go back to basics. It’s time to start parsing the language of the behavioral marketing world and find out once and for all what it all really means.

In this column and the next, I will use the Web sites of a number of behavioral advertising vendors in an attempt to clear the fog that surrounds this marketplace.

I can already hear the groans.

Yes, the behavioral marketers’ children have no shoes, to borrow from a famous euphemism. The Web sites of the behavioral marketing world aren’t necessarily the best examples of advanced marketing techniques. But I am not interested in casting stones at individual sites. I’m on a search for meaning and truth.

Here are some general observations about why it is so difficult for marketers to narrow the list of behavioral marketing vendors based on their Web sites.

Keep reading!

Originally Published on ClickZ: Behavioral Marketing and the Scientific Method

Brian Massey
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