The Perfect Monsters: Writers Masquerading as Data Geeks

by | May 6, 2020

Data geeks and word nerds. Two opposite camps you don’t usually think of playing nice together.

But what if there was a word nerd who drifted into data geek territory…and liked it? And stayed there!?

Well, it happened here at M&C.

Our resident analytics pro, Bob Merrigan, founded M&C as a communications agency focused on direct marketing—which is/was essentially “data” before data was cool. That focus on testing and results to drive messaging and strategy has always been at the core of our work for clients.

As writers and communicators, we know intelligence gained by data is useless if it’s not actionable and able to be tracked and compared over time.

There’s an M&C podcast planned for later this month to explore this in more detail. For now, here are the main reasons it benefits your organization to have one of these unusual, right- and left-brained creatures manage your data analysis and copy:

  • Prove the gut feeling. Writers rely upon listening, gathering and synthesizing information to create fresh copy that connects with readers. Metrics are another, more objective form of “listening” based upon actual constituent behavior. Where they combine is where the magic happens.

  • Not all information is useful. You can get lost in rabbit holes that don’t lead to actionable intelligence. Writers looking for specific insights to inform copy—and prove or disprove hypotheses—can keep on the right path, avoiding detours that waste time.

  • Built in agility. Especially in digital communications, writers who pay attention to data available in real time can edit copy and rework strategy in response to open rates, clicks, shares and other desirable donor behavior.

Listen in during our May podcast to hear more about actionable data and how to use it in your communications strategy.

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