Whenever I launch a new campaign, I can’t wait for insights into how it’s performing. But it can be surprisingly difficult to get these campaign launch performance insights, especially in the early days of a campaign before activity translates into revenue. The challenges stem from:
- Existing BI dashboards built to just show aggregate performance across multiple campaigns and channels.
- No real understanding of expected campaign performance based on past performance of similar campaigns launched across channels.
- Lack of analyst team bandwidth to query every possible channel and KPI to surface every related performance improvement post-launch.
The Outlier automated business analysis platform solves all three of these challenges with ease. Scroll down if you want to skip to the punchline and see some real-world examples, but first, let’s explore each challenge in a bit more detail.
Challenge #1: BI dashboards show aggregate performance
Marketing performance dashboards are typically built for an exec audience and show aggregate or rollup performance across multiple channels, campaigns, regions, segments, or products. If online shoe sales are spiking in New York but online jeans sales are lagging in California due to changes in promotional tactics, that potential insight is likely lost in the rollup. If a new campaign launches, success and related insights might get lost in the aggregate reports.
Challenge #2: No understanding of expected campaign performance
Analytics teams are typically not staffed or even tooled up to generate expected performance across every possible data combination. And even if an analyst was locked and loaded to prepare this analysis in advance of a campaign launch, it’s likely that either lack of rigorous data science expertise or the introduction of human bias might skew the results. Were the correct historical campaigns and related data selected? How does a human even spot the launch dates for prior campaigns? Was the sample size large enough to be statistically valid?
Challenge #3: Lack of analyst team bandwidth
A fundamental challenge is that even the best and brightest analytics teams just don’t have the staffing to perform hundreds of thousands of analyses across a million or more time series data points each day. Humans can only ask and answer a fraction of the questions needed to find critical insights hiding in massive data sets. But Outlier can. So let’s dig into how an Outlier launch performance story works, and then look at some real-world examples.
Launch performance stories explained.
While most Outlier stories focus on changes in particular segments compared to past performance of those same segments, sometimes you might want to know how a new segment is performing right after launch, compared to other similar segments. These stories show when a segment is over or under-performing relative to its historical peers from prior launches.
How do you read a launch performance story?
Below is a screenshot of an actual e-commerce launch performance story from May 6, 2021. The headline explains in simple, natural language that visits for product number 134 (the product ID code) is outperforming past launches from similar products. The subhead quantifies this overperformance as 114% higher than previous, similar launches! The line graph shows the daily visitors to the product page, and the shaded green region shows the expected range of daily visitors for a similar product launch based on historical data. This highly visual and easy-to-understand story paints a dramatic picture…something happened on day six after the product launch that caused a major spike in visitors to this product page.
This is the genius and power of the Outlier platform. Once Outlier is connected into all the relevant data sources, it builds historical models based on past performance for every time series metric and data segment. For larger enterprises, Outlier is querying anywhere from 100K to 1 million or more time series data points every day! Its advanced AI detects trends, relationships, and thousands of possibly important anomalies, and narrows that down to the 5-10 most important stories that are sent to your inbox each morning.
The Outlier platform makes it quite easy to share valuable insights like the above launch performance story, mobilizing a larger team with important clues about where to aim what is usually a substantial investment in BI tools and staff to determine what actually drove this impressive performance, and carry those learnings forward to future product launches.
A recent Forrester study found that Outlier’s dramatic business impact delivered a 200% ROI with a payback period of three months for a Fortune 500 brand, improving campaign effectiveness by $251K, saving two weeks of analyst time per year, and cutting 100 hours in manual processes from their data science team annually.
Here are some real-world examples
We’ve been ramping up our go to market team and launching a number of new campaigns over the past several months here at Outlier. It’s been a delight to see the results of all this hard work clearly show in our daily, weekly, and monthly Outlier feed. And it’s been a magical experience to just have Outlier spot and share campaign launch performance automatically!
I have vivid memories of the first time I used a GPS in a Hertz rental car back in the day, or rode an electric bike uphill for the first time and felt like the bionic man. These were magical moments. The first time I saw a launch performance story in Outlier, I had a similar experience.
Here’s a launch performance story from a few days ago for a webinar promotional campaign that Outlier automatically spotted and shared. It actually started sharing stories like this the day of the campaign launch; I’m just showing the story from a few days in. Again, note the shaded green region, which is the expected range Outlier has calculated based on similar historical campaigns. The line plot clearly shows this campaign outperforming prior efforts. And this was a valuable, early insight, as we were testing a new promotional channel.
Here’s another launch performance story from June. We were running an omnichannel campaign to promote our digital customer experience solution for marketers, and Outlier spotted impressive launch results across several channels, including website traffic. Again, Outlier spotted the campaign launch on day one, and we kept getting updated insights in our daily feed…automatically!
This was a big campaign for us, as we were testing new messaging, creative, audience targeting parameters, and channel mix. To see all this hard work drive massive overperformance across many dimensions including unique users visiting our site and campaign landing page was fantastic.