The Science of Marketing

Jesse Harriott and Dave Krupinski

What did I learn at the Massachusetts Innovation and Technology Exchange’s (MITX) Data and Analytics Summit, held this month at Fidelity Investments? For one thing, my college marketing courses should have been counted as science credits!

Jesse Harriott and Dave Krupinski
Jesse Harriott from Constant Contact and Dave Krupinkski from deliver the opening keynote

You heard me right. In today’s age of advanced data and analytics, marketing has become a science – literally. Now more than ever, marketers are looking at the abundance of numbers, statistics, and formulas they collect to inform their best marketing practices.

At the Microsoft-sponsored Summit, The Science of Marketing: Using Data and Analytics for Winning, major brand executives from Constant Contact,, Mullen, Panera, and Microsoft (it was one impressive bunch!) among many others advised the audience how to harness the power of data to optimize the ROI of marketing programs. There was also a brief, but equally important discussion concerning the favorite Panera sandwich of Shawn Utke, Vice President of Brand Insights and Research at Panera Bread. It’s the Bacon Turkey Bravo in case you were wondering…

David Rothschild
David Rothschild

David Rothschild, Economist at Microsoft Research in New York City, also joined the conversation with an afternoon session on The Impending Transformation of Market Research. Rothschild’s powerful and real-time predictions have spanned everything from Obama to the Oscars, predicting 50 of 51 states correct in the presidential election, 19 of the 24 categories of the Oscars correct and recently dabbling with the Eurovision song contest. A look at his prediction page gives you a sense of the varied models (across political races, professional sports and entertainment, among other topics) he’s looking at, and how his research is changing the face of forecasting, collaborating with various Microsoft teams like Xbox (Live Polling during the Presidential debates) and Bing (Social Media Interest Scale) to build more relevant, real-time, accurate and extensible methods.

Data Summit Audience
Not a seat was empty!

In his session, Rothschild shared how his methodology for survey research can more efficiently and more cost-effectively determine both present AND future insights. With this new methodology, he is certain survey research will undergo a transformation for the better in upcoming years.

“I was able to share with the audience at MITX some of the insights I have gained as cutting edge projects in both polling and prediction games, initiated here at Microsoft, have started to come to fruition, along with my general work studying the market research industry,” said Rothschild. “I am privileged at Microsoft Research to have the freedom to pursue my research with an academic mindset, while also having the opportunity to spend the time to learn from the community of people who actively engage in the work I study and have my work feed back to them. Great events like MITX allow me to do both.”

Rothschild’s session was just one of many (full list of sessions here), however, that taught attendees how to build successful data and analytics plans in their own organizations. Whether a data expert or a newbie to the world of data and analytics, all summit-goers left with a new strategy, insight, or tool they can use to improve their own practices.

Special thanks to David Rothschild and Tom Parnell for their help in drafting this post!



Tags: , , , , , , , ,