We live in a world of big data, full of constantly updated information, more than we could hope to digest. In the digital media arena, everything is tied to data. While we certainly cannot function without analytics, there is more to making decisions. Marketing intuition is just as important today as ever.
The Nature of Intuition
In its simplest sense, intuition is a perception obtained independently of any reasoning process. Which basically means it is a hunch that you have which did not come from the data. Some people have natural intuition in certain areas, but my observation has been that intuition comes from experience, from past learnings, from lot
s of other data digested over time. It is something you learn, train, and cultivate.
Intuition is not always right, but more often than not it can help you get close enough to your target where you can find the data you need to hone in on the bullseye. Intuition helps determine your starting point, it helps you innovate midstream, and avoid potential pitfalls.
The Role of Data
Data should guide what we do, but it is a rather one dimensional way to understand things. In my experience data helps us to refine, but rarely innovate. The nature of analytics is past tense, what has been done, what the trend was, what has worked or not worked, etc. But data is tangible and essential.
This might sound a bit philosophical, but data is what holds intuition accountable. It grounds things in reality, and validates or invalidates our approach. Nothing can replace good marketing intuition, but without good data, you will not get very far.
So what is the take away? Diligently work to cultivate your intuition, but don’t take many steps without data.