The last panel of the day – Translating Analytics Into Action – played to a standing room only crowd and brought together three great leaders across a diverse array of industries.
Laura Gross (@lgrossinla), VP of Global Consumer Insights & Strategy at Warner Bros., Natanya Anderson (@natanyap), Director of Social Media & Digital Marketing at Whole Foods and Paul Mabray (@pmabray), CEO of Vintank. Paulo Simas (@psimas1), President of Brewlife played host and welcomed the opportunity as a creative pro to dig deep into the details of analytics.
Things kicked off with Paulo painting a scene of the panelists at a dinner party and being approached with the fairly simple (albeit unlikely) question, “what does analytics mean to you?”
All panelists agreed that analytics helps bring brands closer to their customers, have a better understanding of what they want and how businesses can more effectively engage with them.
“Analytics helps get us closer to consumers, to answer the questions we’re not asking. And social analytics serves as consumer advocate, helping brands understand when, where and how consumers buy into concepts. How well are we doing and could we do it better.” – Laura Gross
Paul Mabray illustrated some of the differences he sees in the wine industry with a focus primarily on small and medium businesses that may not typically engage heavily in social media, analytics delivers fundamental context that can help them make decisions.
“If someone talks about something a lot, they’re likely going to buy that particular product. We deliver that to wineries with understanding of context – they haven’t bought, but they’re talking- to help them better engage consumers and drive to an actual purchase.”
Of particular interest in the discussion and to LiveCube participants was the fact that Whole Foods doesn’t employ any sort of loyalty program (discount cards, etc) with its customers. Instead, they focus on social media and analytic insights to learn about their customers and their behaviors to deliver a better experience for them.
“Whole Foods doesn’t collect a lot of information about our customers. Social delivers source of customer data about our brand we wouldn’t normally have, and enables us to understand how customers talk about Whole Foods.”
Whole Foods also leverages social and analytics to drive new opportunities with customers. A great example of this was their discovery of a lack of conversation amongst customers around organics in their analytics dashboards. This discovery enabled them to engage in conversations with customers about organics and how Whole Foods could better meet their needs on that front.
Making the most of your analytics, not just putting 100% focus on influencers but engaging at multiple levels and making it your own was another key highlight.
Warner Bros. found this out first hand with the blockbuster film, The Hobbit, Warner Bros focused on Twitter followers and developed clusters around conversations to gain a better understanding of outlying groups of advocates where they could engage and drive conversations around The Hobbit and other brands and products in the Warner Bros. arsenal. Focusing on advocates instead of influencers can be a great place to start because influencers sometimes much harder to move toward your brand.
To close things out, the panel gave some great advice to any company looking to get the most out of their analytics investment – sometimes it’s best to start small and build from there. As Natayana noted, “The path to big data sometimes starts small, and that’s ok.”