The dashboard metaphor came to me recently when looking for the antithesis of what I have long been calling “rearview mirror” marketing strategy. Those who look through the rearview and side view mirrors to guide marketing decisions are likely to make only incremental advances. This school of marketers asks questions such as “Where have our sales come in the past? Where have our competitors’ sales come from in the past? Who is gaining marketshare and what is their strategy?” I’m a fan of history but I don’t advise clients to be stifled by it.
The Marketing Dashboard
The dashboard is something you hear about repeatedly in corporate management circles. Data a la carte. A single computer interface with dollar sales, unit sales, segment sales, regional sorts, YOY, month over month, sale by channel, A to S ratio, cost per click, etc. The dashboard can be mesmerizing, but what lies ahead of the dashboard? The answer is the future. The horizon. And, more importantly, what’s beyond the horizon. Can you say iPod?
I’m not going to go all Henry Ford on you but the future is where the big money is. Doing what everyone else does, even in messaging, is where the incrementalists play. Don’t be an incrementalist. Look forward. People are people and their needs are predictable. Don’t over think. Understand simplicity, usability, and human nature…and you should be able see beyond the dashboard.
Happy Holidays and a big fat PEACE!