Also known as evidence-based marketing, marketing science is a phrase becoming more and more common by the day. So what makes an approach to marketing actually a science? Does science-based marketing mean it’s no longer an art? Or should they be seen as complimentary practices? We investigate further and come to some very interesting conclusions.
The most common discussion point for art-based marketing is based on the fact that art is subjective. What is visually appealing to one may not be visually appealing to another. The same applies to branding. What entices us to buy a particular type of wine? Well debated for years, it’s been proven that, for the vast majority of the wine-buyers, it’s the look and feel of the bottle that determines the sale. The old phrase ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder’ certainly resonates here.
Because of the subjective nature of art, many artists produce what inspires them. What moves them. Some would say that for the same artwork to have the same effect on an art-buyer, and result in a sale, is pretty slim. The chance of someone turning up to that particular gallery, at just the right time and having enough disposable income to buy that piece of art doesn’t occur that often, but it does happen. That’s why many artists say that their profession is a difficult one but they are driven by the love of being creative – it’s also one of the reasons for art being so expensive.
What if we could apply some hypothetical science to the world of art? What if we analysed the data of the visitors to a particular coastal tourist town. Their age, gender, loves, hates, fears, inspirations and income. We then took the same information from buyers of certain styles of artwork and cross referenced the two sets of data. Could we produce an algorithm that is able to predict the percentage chance of a particular art piece being sold? Better still, could we use the data to produce art that appeals to the highest portion of the coastal town’s tourists?
This all sounds very scientific. But this is the reality when brands are created and marketing campaigns are run. To ensure a positive outcome, a target market should be analysed and the chance of success be determined prior to any creative process taking place. There’s certainly very little evidence to support the ‘build it and they will come’ theory. Do you think that wine bottle label creators are basing their artwork on what the designer thinks will sell the wine, or do you think there’s some data analysis taking place prior to the design phase?
So is marketing a science or an art?
Its should be both.
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