Success is all in the data

In response to Richard West’s article, Tidy Profit in Junk, I think there needs to be a greater emphasis on the role of predictive analytics to enable better targeting and return on investment for direct marketing. But of course, before we can perform advanced analytics we need to collect relevant data.

I don’t totally agree that targeting remains a “very” unpredictable science – there are ways to improve predictability. Data that is priced high should hold a larger number of variables if it’s of good quality. The more relevant variables we have, the more effective and reliable the results of running a predictive model will be against this data.

By finding and eliminating the correlations between the variables we can then highlight the key predictors to improve targeting and therefore increase the response rates and overall performance of the direct marketing campaign. At the same time we can simultaneously reduce the amount of data we need.

We need to work on collecting more variables. The more information on prospects and customers the better the ROI will be – in comparison to a generic mass-mailing approach. Let’s improve our data capture, get a consolidated view of all customer interactions across the business and then apply advanced analytics.

Make an investment now to save later and bin the scattergun approach, or our industry will continue to be received with caution. We may never completely eradicate junk mail, but it can be reduced.

Grayson Amies

UK country manager



Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here