Seven Reasons I Love Moneyball Marketing

In the first two posts in this space, I introduced and then defined the term Moneyball Marketing.

You know what the best thing about it is? – it’s a ton of fun. And I love it.

It really makes a difference to do something you love.  In fact, whenever I interview a prospective team member or get introduced to a new team member, one of the questions I ask is “Why do you love marketing?”.

So what’s my answer?  There are many, but here’s Seven Reasons that I Love Moneyball Marketing:

(1) It works “all sides of the brain”

In school I always  had varied interests, and initially I had a hard time choosing “what I wanted to do in life.” Moneyball Marketing requires equal parts analytics, process, people management, information architecture, persuasion and creativity.

(2) You’re truly building something

I’ve heard the term Revenue Architect, and I like it. Software developers are often fulfilled by the act of coding something elegant and effective. Similarly systematic, marketing driven revenue growth requires the build-out of integrated teams, systems and processes. Processes that need to be created and refined include mapping the buyer journey and connecting nurturing programs to it; process for content production at scale; process for program development, integrated across marketing channels and regions; process for tracking the impact of marketing investments across all forms of media; and many more.

I find something fulfilling about the 'architecture' element of revenue architecture, designing something and then seeing how it works out in practice, and then evolving it further.

(3) It requires true teamwork

Revenue growth is a team sport. Four examples of the teamwork required on a daily basis for revenue growth to be operating effectively:

  • Product Marketing and Marketing Programs - to maximize effectiveness of programs leveraging the right strategy and the right content
  • Marketing Programs, Digital Marketing and PR/Social - creating integrated, cross-channel programs
  • Marketing and Sales - ensuring alignment through the generation and leads and creation of opportunities
  • Marketing and IT - ensuring the systems are in place to support closed loop marketing

(4) It’s okay to fail

This may be my favorite. Baseball hitters have a job where if they fail (make an out) 7 times out of 10, that is considered excellent performance as it translates to a .300 batting average.

In Revenue Growth Marketing, a significant part of programs analysis is to identify what isn’t working… and either drop it or fix it. Especially in the first year or working in a new marketing organization, finding out what doesn’t work is just as valuable as finding out what does work.

And we can extend the baseball adage to marketing and saying if you’re not failing at least half the time, then you’re not doing your job. Why? A/B testing is a required component to revenue growth marketing, to ensure you are evolving your understanding of what works best and have empirical data to back it up. If you are A/B testing, then half of what you do is going to ‘fail’, and that’s okay.

On that note, it’s vital to foster a culture amongst the revenue growth marketing team which says that it’s okay to fail, and in fact failure is needed. Encourage teams to fail fast, and to share the failures, and the resulting learnings, with their colleagues.

(5) It’s constantly evolving

There are new companies and technologies emerging every day. There are new techniques and best practices. Of last for me SEO has been a fun area to learn about the various perspectives and point of view, and then formulate a SEO plan that involves the creation of effective web content, the management of effective website hygiene, the development of influencer relationships to drive the seeding of content and the management of best practices around inbound links. There's always something new to learn, someone new to learn form and something to do better. 

(6) It involves helping people - meeting the needs of customers 

Around 2003 I was traveling back to New York from a Procter & Gamble pitch at Targetbase in Dallas with Matt Seiler, then an EVP at Omnciom Group and now Global CEO of IPG Mediabrands. I remember Matt, who had at that point recently had his third child, talking to me about how he explains to his kids what he does, as an advertising executive. I remember only partially understanding what he was talking about, or why he even cared to answer that question. And it was a hard question to answer, especially at that point when looking at it from the lens of an Advertiser, how do you explain to children the benefit of Advertising?

So flash forward 11 years and now I’m the father of three and I find the B2B marketer has a much clearer path to explaining the value they deliver – our job is to help people. Through the content we create, through the programs we develop, we are there to help people do their jobs better and more easily. And that to me adds an element to the job that I couldn’t have made as clear a case for in a 2003 ad pitch.  (PS - Matt is and was brilliant, and he could make the case however!)

(7) You can celebrate along the way

The beauty of measurement is we can monitor the moving of the needle along the way.  Whether it’s something we learn from an A/B test, or an improved conversion rate from a specific web channel or marketing program, or the roll out of a new activity under development… there is a lot to celebrate along the way. Lots of little victories that can boost the team and personal morale, and lead to much bigger victories down the road.