‘More measurement needed’

The lack of measurement in the Middle East’s marketing industry is “plaguing” the industry and costing it millions of dollars.

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By  Tim Addington Published  April 16, 2006

The lack of measurement in the Middle East’s marketing industry is “plaguing” the industry and costing it millions of dollars. While moves are being made towards establishing accountability in television and print, marketers are failing to maximise their effective contacts with consumers and are losing money as a result, according to Oscar Jamhouri, CEO of international marketing and communications consultancy Integration. “In general people don’t like to measure and the lack of rigour is something that is plaguing the whole marketing communications function,” he said. The head of the Cyprus-based firm, whose clients include FMCG giant Procter & Gamble, said that brand managers, marketing directors and CEOs can benefit from introducing systems that measure how effective their marketing and advertising campaigns are in generating sales. Jamhouri, who worked for Impact BBDO in Dubai during the early 1990s, has developed a tool that enables companies to monitor which contact points it has with consumers are the most likely to generate sales. Called Market Contact Audit (MCA), the tool gauges how effective mediums such as TV, radio, print, sponsorship, and all interactions a brand has with the consumer, are in converting to sales. Based on locally produced research, Integration’s tool assigns what it calls brand experience points, which gives marketers detailed information on the return on investment specific marketing activities produce. Jamhouri said: “Brand experience points advise you as a company how influential a particular contact point is, it also provides information on the strengthens and weaknesses of that contact, and if there is still room to improve.” In the Middle East, staff from Zenith Optimedia have been trained on its research tool called Touchpoints, which is based on MCA, and the tool is becoming the industry standard in terms of marketing measurement, according to Jamhouri. It also counts Omincom Media Group and Universal McCann as its customers. Michael Walters, managing director of True Integrated Marketing, Integration’s agent in the Middle East, said companies in the region were now starting to realise the potential of using marketing measurement tools to grow their business. “It is not throwing bagfuls of money at marketing, it is being smart on how you spend that money,” said Walters.

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