Marketing Mix Modeling Experts’ Input on the Covid-19: Christophe Brossard and Charles Xavier, Partners at Metrics720

The COVID-19 pandemic created profound disruptions in the way people live, work, and buy. In the midst of it all, Advertisers and retailers had to adjust their media spend and advertising strategies to better meet their organizational goals. During the imposed confinement, Mass Analytics gathered the Marketing Measurements industry’s leading experts to share their thoughts on what is happening in their perspective organizations, and give us some valuable advice.

Christophe Brossard and Charles Xavier, Partners at the Marketing Measurement agency Metrcis720, with over thirty years of experience in the industry, gathered to share with us their thoughts on what is happening in the world today and give us some valuable advice.

How is the recent COVID-19 outbreak impacting your day to day work life and what steps are you taking to cope with this?

At Metrics720, we are used to being flexible in our work style as we can work either from our offices, our homes, or client offices. We have:

  • Robust IT and data management policy in place allowing for easy access to our data.
  • Collaborative tools which are playing an important role in our day-to-day work life, making communication efficient and flexible.

In this respect, the pandemic did not have a major impact on our day-to-day work.

Business-wise, it is much more difficult. While some of our clients have asked to reduce the statement of work and budget for our projects such as airlines, some clients, FMCG for instance, are making use of this downtime to conduct marketing measurement projects and understand the drivers of their businesses to get prepared for the post-pandemic.

“We strongly recommend the latter approach and will try to encourage other clients to follow the same, once we manage the ‘emergency’ business issues.”

According to you, how will the COVID-19 outbreak impact Marketing, Marketing Measurement, and Marketing Mix Modeling in particular?

We would like to think that no company will return to business without having a clear view of how marketing dollars work short-term and long-term for their business outputs. Especially as for many businesses the first half of 2020 will be a clear ‘disruption’ in time series.

“Their baseline business before and after COVID-19 will be different.”

In this respect, we hope that many companies and marketers will take advantage of these exceptional circumstances to ask for advice from attribution analytics specialists. When the situation gets back to (a new) normal knowing for a fact how they will rebuild brand consideration, intention, and sales with the highest effectiveness will become a critical issue.

Our community can certainly help them with that.

How do you think Marketing Measurement can contribute to overcome the economic consequences of this crisis?

As explained, we – the community of modelers with expertise in marketing- can help each company to:

  1.  Know what will work best with the highest ROI to regain their market share.
  2. Understand how their baseline behaved during the crisis and evaluate the new baseline after (to help them with considerate business planning) and ultimately help them in their business planning decision process.

One key challenge will be to avoid the temptation to cut drastically marketing investment and/or focus only on short term incentivization of purchases.

“Brand building will need to be valued even more than before the crisis.”

What can we do as a community to prepare to help the industry thrive again after this crisis?

As a community, we can have joint communication initiatives to develop a broader understanding of how attribution analytics work and how it can help to get back to grow rapidly.

From a wider perspective, we can help our communities to gain a faster understanding of how economic indicators are likely to evolve in the second half of 2020, in each market. It would be very valuable if we could approach the authorities in different countries and propose them pro bono work to help them reorganize swiftly the overall activity.

Since the beginning of the outbreak, modeling of the spread has been getting the highlights in mainstream media. No one escaped graphic visualization of the speed of the spread. In addition to this, we will also need to see forecasts on GDP growth, unemployment rate, stock exchange value, etc.

“Why don’t we propose collective help to governmental authorities?”

Any advice you would like to share with the community to cope with the COVID-19 outbreak?

Our advice for everyone is to stay at home as much as possible to avoid the spread of the virus, take care of your families, and stay responsive to your clients’ needs.

And if you have spare time, as we will probably have in a few weeks’ time when finishing ongoing projects, work on methodologies and try to create a large consensus on good practices across the industry (as well as bad ones) and foster a fairer valuation of our industry by clients.