Attitudinal data is important for 21st century marketers

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Ken Geis
Ken Geis
Today's empowered and social-media-savvy consumers make attitudinal data more important than ever. Yet, it's these insights that are most often the missing ingredient in marketing programs. Attitudinal data provides powerful insights when combined with objective segment, demographic and behavioral data. Together, they provide a complete picture of the consumer and ensure relevant targeting and messaging.

Attitudinal data adds depth and perspective to an otherwise basic black-and-white outline of your customers. Think of it as the color in your marketing toolkit, bringing the information in your marketing database to life.

It provides powerful insight for tailoring your product benefits, contact strategy and messages for each market segment.

Attitudinal data answers these key questions: What does the consumer think of my company, my product and themselves?

These details make it possible to design marketing programs that match the attitudinal profiles of selected targets. Attitudinal data can raise the win rate to four in five or even five in five — vs. the typical one in five — because it ensures greater consumer relevance.

Subjective research and consumer profiles often sit in binders on shelves, while real-time objective data is refreshed hourly and manipulated easily in databases. In the rush to get a campaign out, it's easier to crunch numbers, select segments and accept the relatively thin consumer insights from objective data. You might know who was on your website or their demo and market, but do you know why they are interested or why they cancelled?

In the long run, it is far more cost effective to invest time in research, surveys and first-hand customer interviews to get better results. Translating data into distinct and relevant value propositions for target audiences requires strategic marketing, resourcefulness and creative talent.

Relevance is about backing up the core value proposition of your product's message. It is not about creative versioning. What does your product do for the consumer that is relevant to their particular situation? What services and benefits should be amplified in your communications? Safety, convenience, speed, power, savings, credibility? Different segments value certain aspects over others.

Being relevant has never been tougher. Listen, and you can eliminate waste from your large monthly “blasts.” You will send less and receive more. Most importantly, you will build your customer base and ultimately the value of your organization.

Ken Geis is VP of agency services for Merkle. Reach him at

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