The importance of data and analytics to Adidas

We look at just one surprising finding from our Forecast 2021 poll.

We’ll be sharing the full results of our survey, 5 questions: Forecast 2021, later this week. In the meantime, we’re going to take a dive into just one surprising result, and discuss it with one of the survey’s respondents, Adidas Marketing Analytics Assistant Manager Dimos Papadopoulos.

We learned was that 11% of respondents said the focus of the majority of their personnel spending would be towards data scientists and analytics personnel. 

Why the increased importance of data scientists and analytics personnel? Marketers know that more has to be done with data to prove ROI while building a direct correlation with corporate revenues. 

To talk about these trends and more, we spoke with Papadopoulos, based out of Adidas’ office in the Netherlands. He was able to give both enterprise and international perspectives about the increased demand for data scientists. 

MTT: Data analytics seem to be more valued now than 4 months ago. Why do you think this is?

DP: Overall, many corporations were taken by storm when the whole pandemic started, as their digital solutions were not sharp or also their people were not ready to upskill quickly in order to pick up the digital shift it brought.

The pandemic brought an overall shift to eCommerce channels as well as increased traffic and time spent in an already congested space: media. In order to properly evaluate the performance, success and strategy of those activities, data analytics and advanced analytical methods need to be in place.

Now, if an international organization struggles, we can imagine that smaller companies or mid-size enterprises which have had a more traditional approach to digital and analytics suffered greatly during the beginning, too.

MTT: What have you seen regarding the increase in demand of data analytics? 

DP: I personally saw an increase in demand for consumer analytics—this was largely related to companies trying to get closer to their consumers and understand their needs via the programs they offer (be it CRM, memberships, etc.).

I also saw further increase in insights and growth analytics. I believe many companies are trying to investigate their offerings, as well as unlock potential strategic insights with regards to how consumers react to their performance marketing efforts, experience their website, browse their offerings and ultimately convert. Growth on the other side stems from the fact that although steady demand exists, if innovation stops then this will slowly decline.

Of course machine learning and AI still remain imperative in data analytics and automation, however using the large volumes of data a company already had and discovering patterns has been integral as a trend.

MTT: What do you see as the future of data analytics? Do you think any specific part of data analytics will see an increase in demand? 

DP: I can only speak on my digital marketing field experience as an industry professional, but I do see three items being discussed often in analytics and I believe the future lies here:

  • Multi-channel attribution: Finding the perfect model to showcase which channel brings what amount of revenue in order to achieve the optimum ROI balance.
  • Media Mix Modelling: Advanced analytical and measurement frameworks in order to understand how each channel is performing and what its contribution was during a campaign. It is greatly researched how to measure and combine offline methods, such as online banners, stores and television to a wide array of digital data available. It is considered the future as campaigns become more and more integrated by nature.
  • VR analytics: We do see companies experimenting with AR/VR offerings and shifting a lot of traffic into mobile applications, however a clear trend are the analytics on the experience and areas to unlock potentially for more tech innovation, especially in the retail industry

MTT: Have you seen any specific industries or sectors increase their demand in data analytics? 

DP: Definitely within the retail sector, as they relied a lot on physical stores. However the retail sector noticed the current need for digital stores which practically remain open all-day, everyday. That also shifted their requirements for analytics.

In recent years, government entities and commercial banking have also increased their demand for analytics due to being quite traditional in nature.

However, 2020 has been a defining and I believe that it has impacted every single sector and industry.

MTT: What else are you observing in the world of data analytics and data scientists? 

DP: Overall, without having data to prove it, I have seen and heard through my industry peers that there is a hiring surge online when it comes to analytics over the last few months. I believe brands are looking into what data they already have in-house and are trying to come up with new ways to connect with their consumer base.

Analytics will be impacted greatly by privacy laws and legal ramifications in the future (like GDPR, CCPA etc.), which will also bring further demand for analytics professionals as well as modification of solutions so companies continue to operate optimally.

Why we care. These words from a hands-on practitioner at a major brand signal the increased importance of data and analytics to marketing teams. Stay tuned for more results.

This story first appeared on MarTech Today.


About The Author

Rodric J. Bradford is the Editor of MarTech Today and has worked in the marketing technology industry as both a journalist and corporate project manager. Prior to joining MarTech Today Bradford served as Convention and Technology Beat Reporter for the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Business Press publication and worked as Technology Reporter for Global Gaming Business, the world’s largest casino publication. In the corporate world Bradford has served as Technology Project Manager for CNA, Cigna, General Dynamics and Philip Morris. Bradford is an alumnus of the University of Missouri-Columbia.

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