Monday, November 30, 2015

Brand Measurement: Best Practices to Link Results to In-Market Performance


Brand Measurement: Best Practices to Link Results to In-Market Performance

Jim Lane, President & CEO, Directions Research
Jim Nyce, Former VP Insights, Sun Products |Kraft| Pepsi

This talk centers on how can insights-people can track data that leads to real market performance.

The old system is broken. The case example that begins the session was a major CPG brand that was tracked over four hours. The goal was to track how pricing impacted market share. Market share lost five points of share. Once they lowered their price again, share rose, but never to its former glory. The value for the money was stagnant.

What actions got taken based on the tracker?

The moral of the story is that brand tracking needs innovation.

Let’s take a quick look back at tracking history:

Brand Health Assessment—A Very Brief History
1.     Pre 1985: WE had annual attitude & usage studies
2.     Late ‘80s: Continuous Tracking comes to America
3.     ‘90s-‘00’s: Brand Health Tracking Ubiquity
4.     ‘00’s: Ongoing Brand Health Tracking

The problem was that Brand Health Tracking was insensitive to marketplace changes, vulnerable to trend disruptions, and rarely actionable. As well they are expensive, resource intensive, difficult to dovetail with other data streams. Most damaging, they were not reflective to the market.

Questions: Does your tracker align with market sales? Is your tracker sensitive to in-market changes?

Make sure trackers are valid, sensitive, cohesive, and timely.

You must think beyond traditional scales to capture reality.

You must win. You have to be the best. You must be first to win.

Ranking is better than ratings for more realistic data modeling. Rankings more accurately reflects the category. Rankings overly normalize the data without taking in contextual and cultural  factors. Warning: once a new brand is introduced into the herd, the measured changes.

Trackers can use social data as an early warning system.

The main point is that brand tracking is lagging, but the promise of social, mobile, online, phone, and surveys working together makes tracking more dynamic and actionable.


Michael Graber is the managing partner of the Southern Growth Studio, an innovation and strategic growth firm based in Memphis, TN. Visit www.southerngrowthstudio.com to learn more.

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