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The Data You Do (And Don’t) Have: A Recipe

From the desk of: Mimi Lettunich


What’s the recipe for a successful creative campaign? There’s no set formula, but you need two parts perspiration to one part inspiration, about a pint of “alignment with objectives,” a dash of cultural relevancy, and a pinch of cleverness for flavor.

But there’s one staple ingredient that can never, ever be omitted: data.

Data is (or should be) the base of every creative campaign. Because when you add data into the beginning of the creative process, that’s when a campaign simmers with success.

Using the data you have on hand is great, but for brands looking to do something different, simply relying on the data they’ve always used is no longer enough. To do something fresh, exciting and new, brands also need a new ingredient. They need to blend their existing data with the data they don’t have. But you can’t just pop into the corner store for more data.  You need a creative partner that can help you fill in the data gaps and get your campaign heating up.

It’s not “out with the old and in with the new.” It’s “in with old and in with the new.” This combination of existing and new data is the secret sauce to a stand-out campaign.

Step 1: Use The Data You Already Have
Most brands have a pantry full of data at their disposal – consumer behavior, market research, historical campaign data – the list goes on. This knowledge is crucial to initiating a campaign. It’s one of the reasons why agencies and brands need to work closely together throughout the creative process, especially in the initial stages. But today’s business world is so “data-drenched” it’s easy to get bogged down. Knowing what data to use and at what stage of the creative process, or even what data to look for in the first place, is a required skill. And if it’s obvious that more data is needed, it’s up to agencies to find it and add it into the mix.

Standout creative starts with two things: the data you have, and the data you don't.

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Step 2: Add The Data You Don’t
An ingredient missing from many creative campaigns is the data brands don’t have internally – and this is where working with a trusted creative partner comes in. That partner can provide the external data needed to help the brand see the whole picture – and to fill in their data gaps.  The additional data needs to be introduced at the beginning of a campaign, in contrast with the old-school idea that data is something that’s collected after a campaign has run. Data should be used before the concept for a campaign is even conceived, or a strategy is devised. Brand’s hesitation to let data drive the creative process usually stems from the fact it can involve additional time and resources. But once a brand commits to a data-led creative process–and the time it takes at the onset– the value immediately becomes clear.

Step 3: Create A Successful Campaign
Combining common, quantitative established data sets (like CTR and foot traffic), with qualitative data (like consumer motivations and behaviors) leads to good creative decision-making. Ensuring these data sets inform the creative process at the start, not the end, is where campaigns go from transactional to transformational. And where businesses see long-term customer engagement, ongoing loyalty and brand addiction.

Preparing stand-out creative starts with two steps: the data you already have and the data you don’t have.

We’re confident this is the recipe for a successful campaign. So confident, we don’t work with clients without first analyzing their existing data and adding the data ingredients they need to deliver the haute cuisine of creative campaigns.

To learn how we can help your brand find the data you don’t have, get in touch here.