IT Briefcase Exclusive Interview: Changing the World of Brand TrackingSeptember 16, 2019 No Comments
In this interview, we talk with Rytis Jakubauskas, General Manager at Latana, about the changing world of brand tracking. Rytis discusses the need for a more innovative and reliable brand tracker in the market – and why the Latana team decided to build just that.
- Q. Thanks for taking the time to chat with us today, Rytis. Can you start by telling us a bit more about the roadblocks for brand managers today?
A. Thanks for having me! Sure! As with many roles in the marketing world, there can be any number of roadblocks. However, the one that always stood out for me was the fact that it can be extremely difficult for brand managers to measure the impact of their work, the brand performance, at least in the same way as other marketers can with Google Analytics or a social media tool such as Hootsuite.
And it’s not just a gut feeling. Over the course of time, I’ve spoken with hundreds of consumer startups and scaleups. I learned that many of them had one thing in common: in order to keep growing, they were increasingly investing in brand. The thing is, these brands knew exactly how much they were spending on brand, just not if that money was well-spent or was indeed leading towards an improvement in brand performance.
- Q. Interesting. Why do you think this is?
A. Quite frankly, as I mentioned earlier, I think the same reliable tools aren’t there for branding as they are for other areas of marketing. Sure, there are roundabout ways to measure if brand performance is improving, such as monitoring mentions, social shares, and even an increase in sales, but none of these solutions are 100% tied to brand and branding activities.
- Q. Correct us if we are wrong, but haven’t brand tracking tools been on the market for some time? Wouldn’t they cover the needs of brand managers that you have already mentioned.
A. Yes to your first question, unfortunately no, to your second. The brand tracking tools that have been on the market for the last few years still lack what brand managers actually need to accelerate their brand. For instance, they provide wildly inaccurate insights, no capabilities for audience segmentation, real-world changes not taken into account, and outdated reporting in the form of spreadsheets. It is hard to make a solid judgement call on data that has a margin of error of of above 20%.
- Q. So, how is it then that Latana differs from these brand trackers?
A. Latana is the first brand tracking tool that uses advanced data science to ensure reliable and accurate brand insights. More precisely, we use MRP, which is a statistical technique originally devised by Professor Andrew Gelman of Columbia University to predict electoral results. By using this technique, we are able to reliably detect the real-world impact of branding activities, even across niche audiences.
It wasn’t the fault of the brands. Brand performance is notoriously hard to measure and existing solutions weren’t living up to the mark. We wanted to change that with Latana.
- Q. That sounds great but in layman’s terms, how can a combination of brand tracking and data science help brand marketers?
A. Latana can help brand marketers improve their brand performance, whether they want to measure the impact of offline campaigns, understand how their target audience(s) perceives their brand, or see how their own brand fares against their competitors’. We do this by taking the Latana user on a journey.
First, they see exactly how their brand is performing by accessing reliable brand insights based on their preferred markets and audiences. Then, our intuitive dashboard enables brand marketers to understand how their brand campaigns have impacted their brand performance over time. Finally, brand marketers can take these insights and use them as a basis to tailor brand marketing for their audience(s) and, in turn, improve brand performance.
- Q. Great! Tell us, how has Latana helped brands so far?
A. Early this year, we had the privilege of helping Headspace grow their marketing activities.
Headspace were in the market for a brand tracker that would provide the data needed to determine if their brand campaigns were actually having a positive effect on their brand performance. They used Latana to track the effect of campaigns across Germany, France and Spain, and were happy to find that Germany showed an uplift in brand awareness that was in line with brand campaign activity. Headspace were also able to pinpoint more niche audiences that were becoming more aware of their brand.
We are happy to continue our partnership with Headspace this year as they work to better understand the maturity of their brand across various markets.
Rytis Jakubauskas is the General Manager at Latana, a Berlin-based tech firm. A tech entrepreneur at heart, he is now taking on brand and market research.
APPLICATION INTEGRATION, CLOUD COMPUTING, DATA and ANALYTICS , SECURITY, SOCIAL BUSINESS