Execution versus expectation is a constant challenge

Datisan COO, Brent Lupton, recently spoke to industry leader Business Transformation & Operational Excellence Insight (BTOES Insights) about why there is a widening gap between the expectations of a digital transformation strategy and its execution.

The rapidly shifting landscape of consumer expectation around how brands are meeting their needs continues to be a challenge for brands and this has only been accelerated by the situation with the global pandemic.

Brands have been investing heavily in digital transformation programs in order to meet the gap between consumer expectations and reality head on, however, despite the investment, the gap is widening at an accelerated pace.

The ability to meet the expectations of consumers and deliver an optimal experience is key for brands to increase share of wallet and new customer acquisition and of course, retain customers and build brand loyalty. Even with heavy investment, without clarity on how to close the gap digital transformation programs will continue to fail.

The top three areas where digital transformation programs have been failing:

#Fail One: Digital replacement is not digital transformation

The most common failure point that I’ve observed over the last five years with transformation programs is brands taking the approach of investing heavily in new or replacement platforms without a clear strategic view of what they need out of their martech and adtech ecosystems in order to surface a single view of their customers. This digital replacement approach is expensive, time and resource intensive and ultimately leads to wasted investment.

#Fail Two: Digital transformation is much more than digital

One of the other failure points in delivering a digital transformation program is siloed business units. This is where the term ‘digital’ can be misleading. Even though the strategy and workload may be focused on a digital ecosystem, in order to successfully operationalise the outcomes of the program it needs to be sponsored at an executive level, with the value and impacts to each business unit mapped, timelined and coordinated across the business. Every consumer touchpoint (offline and online) needs to be planned for in order to ensure that consumers receive a consistent and frictionless experience.

Digital transformation, is in essence, organisational transformation and it needs executive sponsorship – both in budget and support. Your board or C-suite will need a clearly thought out and planned out strategy, budget, timeline and value proposition before they will commit resources and investment against a large scale program.

#Fail Three: The destination is too far away

Quite often with a digital transformation program, the journey from being a business with nascent digital maturity to a fully mature, multi-moment business (navigating through the four stages of digital maturity) can seem like a long and expensive journey. This is where many programs fail before they really start to realise any value against the investment.

Over the course of a three, four or five year program of work, team members change, even the executives sponsoring the program may leave the business. Market forces can shift – bringing the investment into question. Ultimately, without a roadmap in place that clearly articulates smaller, tactical initiatives (realising tangible value quickly along the way) that is mapped to the longer term vision and strategy, you will find that the long term vision and goals will likely fail.


2020 has certainly kicked off with a bang with growing business pressure and the retail sector in particular hit hard with the announcement of a number of high profile brands closing their doors.

With the battleground for the consumer dollar and brand loyalty ever intensifying, user expectations for brand and purchase experience are rising. Add to this the pace of technology evolution and convergence increasing, the need for not just Digital Transformation but larger scale Organisational Transformation should be at the forefront of every business leaders agenda.


For any business, large or small, rallying support for large scale change can be challenging. Your team needs guidance and clarity on the pathway to change but also an understanding of why the change needs to happen.

The path to transformation success begins with having a clear understanding of your starting point as well as your end goals, only then will you then be able to start reviewing the gap and plotting the pathway to your strategic vision.

While digital is only a component of all your brands service and operating blueprint, it has a growing influence of all touch points in the business. Understanding where you sit in terms of your Digital Maturity and how you benchmark against your industry’s competitors gives your business insight into the starting point to transformative success.

Datisan has recently released a digital maturity report based on the results of an extensive national survey conducted last year. Through the data we obtained we were able to segment the digital maturity of Australia by state and by industry.

The four areas of capability tested were the following:

The results of the report have been segmented into four key stages; Nascent, Emerging, Connected and Multi-moment.

No business wants to be the next headline about shutting its doors. To find out how your business stacks up in digital maturity against your industry and state take the the Datisan Digital Maturity assessment today. Or get in touch with our Head of Sales Mike Cornwell here.

Fusing Human Insights and Data for Marketing Success.

At Traffika we use our strategies, content and digital media powered by our ability, to understand your customer data.

Having recently taken on the position of CEO at Traffika, I really wanted to deep dive into the term data driven marketing and explore what that means for our clients and their customers and the value that it delivers.

Before looking at the value of fusing data with human insights meant for brands I took a step back to look at why or more specifically what the function of Marketing actually is.

Some might say that its positioning brands, products, services in front of consumers to raise awareness, consideration and of course purchase. However those are all outcomes that, as Marketers we are looking to achieve.

By focusing only on the positioning of products, services and brands without understanding who the customer is, what they are trying to achieve and why, all we are doing is disrupting their journey and creating more advertising noise.

While using great creative and understanding who your target audience is, we’re not achieving the cut through or enhancing the customers experience.

By using data coupled with human insights and understanding what data is important, we can create marketing solutions that shape real conversations with customers. Rather than disrupt their journey we use data driven marketing to accentuate their journey or make their online experience more efficient.

“Data Driven marketing fused with human insights delivers marketing outcomes with REAL impact.”

Keep an eye out for Traffika’s new series of blogs, podcasts and workshops on how to start with the basics of activating your available marketing data to accelerate your marketing strategy and amplify your marketing ROI.

Contact us today to get started on the pathway to true data driven marketing.

The digital space is exciting, the pace of change, new technology and new ways of communicating with customers makes the life of a digital marketer an attractive place to be.

Whether you have just graduated and starting off as a digital marketer or you’re a CMO, we’ve reached a point in the evolution of the marketing space where we have access to more data about our current and potential customers than ever before.

Previously big data has been nothing but a popular industry buzzword, the promise of accessing all of this data invoked visions of delivering a truly personalised customer experience across channel and device.

The big data reality is, for most digital marketers (agency and client alike), is that big data is a causing us a big problem, the amount of data and customer interaction that we are trying to understand and analyse is like trying to drink from a firehose and causing paralysis by analysis.

Because understanding all of the data feels like such a big challenge, only 2% of Australians companies are investing the time and working with the right partners to extract actionable insights to inform their marketing strategies, deliver the elusive personalised experience and grow revenue.

For the other 98% of Australian brands, while continuing to use broad targeting is reaping some results, we need to understand the cost of inaction. Without understanding the data the customers we have engaged to date are an accidental customer, acquired certainly when there is a good match based on consumer need for the product or service offered at the time, but with no understanding of their continued interaction with your brand there is no brand loyalty and client retention, in addition to the climbing cost of acquiring any new customers.

According to research delivered by BCG companies utilising data driven marketing strategies are seeing increased revenue of 20%, but it is the cost of inaction that should make us sit up and take notice with brands losing up to 30% of revenue through inaction.

Source – Boston Consulting

As digital marketers we are not expected to understand data science and in-depth data analytics, but partnering with the right agency who is experienced and certified in enabling and activating your data will arm you with the actionable insights you need to deliver the optimal experience for your customers, build brand loyalty and grow revenue.

Keep an eye out for Traffika’s new series of blogs, podcasts and workshops on how to start with the basics of activating your available marketing data to accelerate your marketing strategy and amplify your marketing ROI.

Contact us today to get started on the pathway to true data driven marketing.

It’s 8-8.30am Monday morning and like every Monday morning you need to extract some clear insights for your manager and share your update before the end of the day.

As Online marketers we have all experienced coming back after the weekend with our fingers crossed the optimisations and the campaigns deployed last week were successful and we will be able to share some positive news with the team/clients.

As you turn on your computer, open your analytics platform and start adding the filters, clicking the right date range, the picture is starting to be a lot clearer… the campaign is not really performing as expected.

Now at this point in time, you have few options (don’t worry we have all thought about these):

What if by adapting to how you see a change, as either positive or negative, could impact your ability to change the future?

I am going to share with you my top tips and what you need to do, know and look for if you want to start extracting some meaningful insights. Which may help ensure Monday will not be the exhausting reporting task it might’ve been.


Everybody is able to see if something is going up or down, what is actually fascinating is understanding the reason behind the trend – the why and how. Understanding those critical questions could mean that you are able to stop a negative trend spreading further or continue to expand on a positive trend.

Personally, I actually prefer to analyse negative trends. If I am able to understand the reason for the downward trend I am then able to act and make informed optimisations. By all means, seeing a positive trend is equally as important and could mean that by expanding further we could grasp the low hanging fruit and consolidate the opportunities further.

Making a positive impact on the performance is important but being able to drive insights enables me to also learn and understand the situation/behaviour/pattern better which is what we all love to share.


In order to be confident with the results you need to make sure the tracking is accurate and working. Sudden drastic changes in patterns could be coming from a tag or tracking no longer being configured correctly. So before thinking something terrible is happening, start by checking your tracking and tags are in place. This can save you a lot of time trying to find the issues everywhere else.


There is no secret, in order to be able to know where to look and what to search for, you need to know your objectives, the key metrics you want to report on and understand the reporting tools you are using. For those who are using Google Analytics, perhaps start by passing the Google Analytics exam. This will enable you to understand how to look and extract information. Analytics platforms are evolving constantly so we are all in the same boat.


Something as simple as keeping track of all the changes and optimisations done could help you pinpoint exactly where things went wrong and if the trend has been the result of any changes. If you know that some changes made have negatively impacted performance, be prepared to revert back and continue to monitor performance.


Not everything could be due to the changes you have made within the marketing team. Be aware of the changes that could have been deployed around you which could be affecting the performance.


If you don’t ask yourself any questions, it is very likely that the tools and platforms won’t give you any answers. This is probably the biggest mistake we make when using analytics tools. Whilst salesmen are great at telling us that the tool will revolutionise how you work, you need to ask yourself some fundamental questions in order to be able to seek the right information. Each question/answer will lead to another clue, each clue will lead to the next question and so on. The result is not what we are looking for with insights. We are looking at the reason/s why the result is what it is.


Sometimes there is just not anything you can extract, so be prepared to investigate further. In my experience your manager/client will be a lot happier for you to investigate and spend more time if it’s deemed important, than trying to brush the analysis and sharing some approximate insights. Extracting insights takes time and it is important to note that some of the clues left behind might not result in any valid meaningful observations. So take the time to do your work well and if you need more time keep the communications open and share your concerns.


Once you’re done with extracting the single killer sentence, make sure you back up your insights with data. How you find the data, where is it, how can you access it if someone wants to verify or look for themselves.


We as marketers and consultants are requested to provide our view/recommendations. Nobody is perfect, however make sure you are accountable for any mistakes made. At Traffika, transparency and accountability is at the core of everything we do and can sometimes come at a price, however you will find that trust is perhaps the best value you can share with your manager/clients.

Use these points, develop your own strategy and you should be able to stop reporting and start delivering meaningful insights that will deliver great outcomes.

I understand that the ability to drive insights could also be linked to experience but remember we’ve all started somewhere. Keep testing, deploying but more importantly keep reporting and extracting the information that will enable you to learn and develop your understanding.