It's Like 1981 All Over Again

Starcom MediaVest Group's Andy Fisher is getting, in his own words, "a little bit cranky" on the OMMA Metrics & Measurement Cross-Channel Measurement panel. And he's got good reason to be.

Recalling the progression of advancements that have taken place in the analogue marketing world's ability to model data over the past half century, Fisher said the digital marketing world has a lot of catching up to do.

The progression, of course, began with the rise of marketing mix modeling in the 70s and 80s, and exploded in the "Me Decade" with the rise of scanner data panels by Nielsen and IRI. It started with consumer packaged goods, but has migrated into virtually every consumer marketing sector. Modeling of analogue marketing inputs, suffice to say, is pretty darn sophisticated, Fisher said.

Contrast that with the "digital side of the business," and Fisher asserted that "we'd be laughed out of the room" if modern day digital marketing modelers tried to compare their process with the same level of sophistication as analogue marketing in the 70s and 80s.

"We have 50 years of modeling work to catch up on," Fisher declared. "We as an industry need to figure out how to bring those statisticians into the process."

Kevin Cavanaugh, CTO of Alliant Group, concurred, adding. "We kind of forget on the interactive side, all of the history."

Fisher went so far as to give an example of modern day digital marketing modeling that "weighs" all of its inputs "equally."

"They would laugh," Fisher said of the analogue marketing modeling pionners. "And this would be 1981."

On the plus side, Fisher said there are some fabulous attributes in the digital marketing modeling world, especially its fearlessness.

"We are completely fearless. We embrace change. We love change. And we figure out how to benefit from change," he said, suggesting that the traditionalists could learn from that, and recommending an industry summit to put the digital and analogue modeling minds together.

SMG's cranker-in-chief  Fisher

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