Jeff Johnson: Big Data Drives Big Results

In marketing, there are any number of variables, inputs and stimuli that can impact consumer behavior: advertising, discounts, reward programs, expanded business hours and many more. Which ones drive increases or decreases in sales? Maybe you increased your Google ad buy by 15 percent, but is that really what caused the six percent spike in orders the following month? There’s no real way to tell.

Or is there?

Jeff Johnson, Ph.D., is an assistant professor of marketing at Bloch, with expertise in personal selling and sales management, business-to-business marketing and marketing strategy. One of his major research projects involves mining big data to hone in on which customer stimuli really drive changes in customer behavior.

He works with operating businesses in the community, crunching real data. The research results in a custom analysis that can help drive revenue and profitability in the organization by allowing companies to modify their marketing investments for optimal impact, getting more bang for their marketing buck without increasing overall spending.

Johnson collates and analyzes the individual reports to develop insights and track the evolution of customer behavior over time. The academic payoff is expanding the knowledge base of data-driven marketing, knowledge that eventually makes its way into the classroom so future business leaders will understand the value of these tools and know how to use them.

“I begin by sitting down with (managers at a specific enterprise), discuss the questions they’re facing, and develop an analysis that can help them optimize their marketing spend or improve profitability,” Johnson says. “I can marry that with things that are relevant to academics, so we get a win-win.”

This article is an excerpt from the 2017 Bloch Magazine. To read the full article, click here.

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