BIG Marketing Lesson From the 2012 Presidential Election

by Adam Kreitman

In the lead up to the election there were two camps…and I’m not talking about the Democrats and the Republicans.

I’m talking about the numbers guys (quants) and everyone else.

The numbers guys (led by people like Nate Silver) had systems for pouring over all the data from polling, economics, etc. to arrive at their predictions about what would happen on Election night.

The rest (mainly the media and party loyalists) made their predictions based largely on bad (cherry-picked?) data and gut feelings.

As we all know by now, the quants pretty much nailed the Presidential election results.

In marketing too, having proven systems in place and good data to base your decisions on will beat going off of gut feelings and bad/cherry picked data every time.

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