Premium digital analytics solutions: the Rolls Royce Paradox

So your company acquired a premium digital analytics solution. Realistically, you went with either the Adobe Marketing Cloud stack or Google 360 Suite. Because that is what the market has boiled down to, but I digress.

The data collection and processing power this type of solution offers is nothing short of mind-boggling so it (still) comes as a surprise that these solutions are being under-utilised – and that’s a major understatement.

Let’s go back in time to a point when the enterprise web analytics solutions were Webtrends, Omniture and Web Side Story. In those days, you essentially paid a premium for a given volume of data collected and processed, with hardly any major USP to speak of. Then, attributes and custom dimensions started being available in the reports, allowing for more segmentation and insights – at the cost of complex tagging.

These custom attributes could include anything from content grouping attributes to product attributes to eCommerce transaction details to visitor profiling. When tagged on high-volume websites, brands started collecting something very Big Data-ish. Collecting basic clickstream data was easy. Trying to tie in dimensions and attributes made analytics implementations complex overnight and increased the risk of data collection discrepancies and inconsistencies.

For the first time, setting up your web analytics solution required actual development work and therefore, some form of quality assurance. Said quality assurance was never really factored into an analytics projects, meaning that reports suddenly showed “holes” or inconsistencies that made marketers give little credit to “them Interwebz reports”.

As time passed and projects grew, feature usage has systematically been hindered by implementation issues, poor planning or just plain fear of technical issues.

A Rolls Royce is a premium car that should be used to its full potential. Why aren't digital analytics solutions treated the same way?

As a result, you may have heard the analogy “we’re using Omniture the same way you’d drive a Rolls Royce doing 5 mph in the driveway”.

Fast-forward to 2017. You’re paying a premium for an analytics solution with untold potential because you’re afraid of actually implementing its features?

But that’s not all!

  • How do you justify the ROI for your solution?
  • How are you going to renew that budget next year if you have nothing to show for it?
  • Who is in charge of data collection in your team? Do they have a tagging plan or reference document?
  • Do you have processes in place to verify/correct data?
  • How much will you pay to have your agency fix the tagging?

And now you’re being told that if you use a tag manager, all your implementation issues will automagically be taken care of? A tag manager is not a miracle cure, it is merely chicken soup for your tags. It makes you feel better by streamlining the implementation process but definitely does not free you from IT intervention and does not guarantee that a marketing exec can use it. If you had implementation fears and/or issues, using a tag manager is just displacing the issue – sweeping it under the rug if you will.

Back to the Rolls Royce paradox. After paying a hefty price tag for my premium solution, I don’t know about you but I for one would love to take her for a test drive and possibly see what she’s got under the hood.

So how do we go about taking that Rolls Royce roar? Easy.
We actually make data governance an intrinsic part of any digital marketing initiative.

This means establishing data collection plans that will feed your beloved KPIs and scorecards.

This means verifying that data is collected as intended, in the right format, in the right context, with the right values.

This means automating any sort of verification or data quality assurance processes so as not to waste valuable analyst “braindwidth”.

But data governance only works if it is embraced by your entire digital team. They need to be fully aware of the impact of clean and relevant data collection on their insight production capabilities.

At Hub’Scan, we bring data governance solutions for digital marketing teams and their analytics ecosystem. Our platform provides a framework for data validation and automates quality assurance processes so you can be confident in your data and make the right decisions based on reliable insights. We’ll be happy to take you for a test drive – just to see if your Rolls Royce can keep up.