It's still ROI for marketing accountability: Conference Board speaker

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NEW YORK - There is a lot of talk about trendy developments but the real future of marketing is in accountability, according to Alexander Black of Chicago Business Consulting Group Inc. in his presentation called "Accountability in 2010: Taking Marketing ROI to the Next Level."

In his talk at the Conference Board's "Marketing in 2010: Growth Strategies for the Future" show, Mr. Black said when measuring ROI in marketing terms, it should be scalable, residual and interdependent.

"The goal is not just to maximize ROI, but to maximize profits by enhancing long-term customer value," said Mr. Black, senior partner at the CBC Group.

In order to enhance customer value, marketers should focus on a performance dashboard that includes ROI and other key measures and acts as a system to provide visual clarity and drill-down capability.

A good dashboard includes strategy maps, process and role-based measures and predictive modeling for program performance.

The example used was Atlantic TV, a pay television company that faced rapidly maturing markets, telecommunication company threats and a volatile but restrained subscriber base. The marketing campaign was plotted out with a strategy map broken down into financial, customer and markets; internal processes; and learning and growth.

In order to increase subscriber revenue, improve operating margins and reduce customer churn, the marketing team looked at the overall marketing process hierarchy and focused on customer retention, analytics and research. By measuring marketing, customer loyalty, customer analytics and research specifically as well as the losses in these areas, it was able to drill down its agenda.

"By setting a goal and tracking the results, the firm was able to directly measure its ROI," Mr. Black said.

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