Albert Abello Lozano is Head of Marketing Automation and Technology at Treatwell.
He is set to speak at this year’s Festival of Marketing, all about Treatwell’s automation strategy, and its impact on the wider business.
Here’s a little teaser from Albert, with much more to come at the Festival, which is happening on 10th and 11th October at Tobacco Dock in London.
Can you explain the benefits of automation for Treatwell, and the brand’s journey to achieving it?
Albert Abello Lozano: Marketing automation has enabled Treatwell to effectively scale, personalise, and increase the relevancy of our marketing activities across all regions efficiently. Without this function, we wouldn’t be able to reach the level of scale we have now with our existing resources.
I would be lying if I say this change was easy; however, at Treatwell everyone has always been very supportive and aware of the need to do this. From the Marketing Executive to the CEO, there has been constant support to move towards a more innovative technology-focussed marketing function, which enables the team to really focus on the most important thing: achieving growth through the perfect customer experience.
What have been the biggest challenges you’ve faced?
Albert Abello Lozano: I think there’s an educational element that has been fundamental for this to succeed. Explaining the value of embracing automation for each employee can be challenging, but at the same time, it can be very rewarding if they realise how it can help to massively expand their knowledge scope.
An additional challenge that businesses usually face when implementing an automation function is around cross-team collaboration. The automation function heavily relies on technology and product to effectively have an impact. We found the support of the data and technology team fundamental for success; this was not easy initially but has proven very successful after some time of closely working together towards similar goals.
Another main challenge is when people think constantly around solving existing problems rather than finding sizeable opportunities. Technology and automation enables a whole new way of thinking, and this might be difficult at the beginning.
Eventually, these challenges are always outweighed by the benefits of developing an in-house automation function that supports the business units (marketing, supply, cx, logistics etc.)
How do you measure success?
Albert Abello Lozano: Automation has no KPIs; the technology is a means towards an end, and this is usually set on a project basis.
We tried multiple ways to measure the impact of having an automation function and we always failed because it took time to understand that its role is to solve complex business problems that do have KPIs assigned to them.
In the past, we also tried to measure the amount of time saved or the ROI of implementing technology, but, eventually, following each of the squads or project-specific KPIs has proven to be more successful.
How do you ensure quality data?
Albert Abello Lozano: With a very close relationship with the data engineering team, full alignment on what is needed, and why it is vital to ensure trustworthy data. This does not mean you will instantly have the answer to all your questions, but you should be comfortable with the data you have access to and the way it is modelled. At the same time, this relationship will also help to identify where the limitations are and how can you work together to find the best way to cover those potential black-holes of data.
It is important for everyone to understand that this is a two-way relationship; the data engineering team needs to understand what the business needs are, to provide reliable solutions, and at the same time be able to support innovation.
Can you explain the importance of incremental measurement and its role within wider marketing strategy?
Albert Abello Lozano: Incremental measurement is the only way to really evaluate the ROI of your marketing investment. The larger an organisation becomes, the more complex it is to assess the actual ROI of your marketing investment.
Having one unique source of truth is the holy grail within marketing, but something that is becoming even harder to own, and moreover, to operationalise across all levels.
To overcome this and fully understand the impact of each action (large projects or small tactical changes) we need to use lift testing. At Treatwell, we use different models to calculate lift but we use it as much as possible across all the levels of our strategy, from the upper funnel to retargeting and PPC campaigns. This enables the teams to understand the real impact of the work they are performing and focus on the things that really matter, while giving assurance to leadership that the money and resources are being invested in the right place.
How do you achieve the right balance of personalisation, particularly when it comes to attribution?
Albert Abello Lozano: At Treatwell we are just at the beginning of our journey towards personalisation; it is something we have started doing and we are trying to understand the impact it has on the customer experience with our brand.
Personalisation is a very wide concept that involves lots of functions across the business and requires internal alignment. I believe attribution, on the other hand, is a very useful operational way of measuring the impact of marketing activity and that is how we use it here at Treatwell.
We usually model data specifically on a customer level considering multiple inputs – one of them being attribution – whilst always trying to find the best answer for our customers, which is the most important thing.
What would you like to achieve going forward?
Albert Abello Lozano: I believe the next big thing for us is to figure out the value that personalisation represents for Treatwell and its customers. We are all excited about what that can bring to us in terms of performance, but we are not ready yet to evaluate the full extent of what is possible.
Hopefully this is something that the product and marketing teams at Treatwell will focus on this last quarter, and will find an answer moving forward.
You can hear more from Albert and many other speakers at the Festival of Marketing 2019, 10-11 October at Tobacco Dock, London.