A paradigm shift in marketing analytics

June 09, 2015


A few months ago, Astir Analytics posted a brief whitepaper on account based marketing.  Since then, we have received many inquiries regarding our unique approach to marketing campaign measurement.  Many organizations are now trying to shift away from contact focused measurement; which is part of a greater paradigm shift within the marketing community.

The main theme of our previous article (which you can read Here) is a study of how we worked with a client in order to capture "decisions made by committee."  This is only one portion of the reasons to incorporate account level statistics into your marketing measurement.  As technology becomes ever present in all business functions, every individual, department, organization, and corporation now has a robust digital footprint.  The combination of the data made available by a marketer, and the digital engagement within a target account now necessitates a broader measurement criteria. 

If a marketer only ties marketing campaign success (via sales funnel dollars) to a single contact, they are leaving behind valuable data on how their efforts are influencing the greater account.  Traditional measures make the HUGE assumption that a single contact is the sole decision maker, and the sole point of contact for a sale.  This ignores the more likely scenario that an individual contact is only one of many avenues that lead to a single sales opportunity.  Contacts within an account are sharing marketing materials with the committee; and unless your sales person manually ties the final decision maker to your marketing campaign, you lose credit.

You can, however, measure broader influence by looking at an account holistically.  By combining marketing interaction data with sales funnel data at an account level, you can gain a more accurate view of marketing campaign effectiveness.  Inferences can be made based upon the digital footprint of an account; and campaigns can become hyper targeted based upon the digital footprints of individual account contacts.

The practice of account based marketing is still, for lack of a better term, in its' infancy.  Although the concept has been around as long as there have been marketing organizations, the associated logistics and business rules make it difficult to execute.  Astir Analytics has been working with clients in order to navigate through these muddy waters and provide actionable intelligence on an account level.  We have worked closely with clients throughout the years to develop applications that incorporate complex business rules for the combination and analysis of account level marketing campaign and sales funnel data.

Ultimately, it is our goal to provide the means for our clients to tie marketing efforts to real sales dollars... and justify their existence.

If you would like to learn more about our account based marketing solutions, please feel free to give me a call at 908-279-8670 ext. 716.

Best Regards,

Adam Moltisanti

Manager, Marketing and Vendor Relations

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H4 EAD Eligibility Draws Near

May 08, 2015


H4 EAD eligibility is practically on our doorstep.  As of May 26, 2015, H4 visa holders, whose spouses are in the Green Card process with the 140 approved, are eligible for EAD status.  This means that H4s can be able to legally work in the U.S.

This provides unparalleled employment opportunities that will require extensive training and preparation.

As an IT consulting company, Astir is constantly looking for experienced individuals to support our clients.  We are offering an IT training and job placement program designed specifically for H4 EADs.  Now's the best time to start preparing for the bevy of job opportunities that will open up after May 26.

If you are interested, or would like to learn more, please visit our website today.

Best Regards,

Adam Moltisanti

Astir Analytics

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Astir H4 EAD IT Training and Job Placement Program

April 08, 2015

Astir IT Solutions, Inc., the flagship of the Astir Family of Companies has shared the following blog post with Astir Analytics: 

As of May 26, 2015, H4 visa holders will be eligible for EAD status if they meet certain criteria.  If their spouse is in the Green Card process with their 140 approved, they can get an EAD card to legally work in the U.S.  

This will open a myriad of employment opportunities for H4 EADs.  And now is the best time for these candidates to prepare.

With the ever increasing use of technology by virtually every business, there has been boom in the IT consulting industry.  Astir IT Solutions, Inc. has an IT training and job placement program designed specifically for H4 EAD candidates who wish to begin a successful career in IT consulting.  This program combines IT training in a wide array of areas with resume preparation, interview coaching, job skills training, and resume marketing.  Each trainingn program concludes with project placement through Astir IT Solutions, Inc. 

Astir gives you the IT training you need, and the job you want!

We offer comprehensive IT training programs both in-classroom and online; with flexible training schedules.  These programs include:

  • .NET
  • Java
  • UI
  • Informatica
  • Tableau
  • Etc.

Astir has a number of long-term, successful relationships with prime vendors and direct clients.  We are seeking H4 EAD candidates in order to fill the large volume of unique projects and requirements we have.  If you are on, or eligible for, H4 EAD status, now is the best time to prepare for and start your lucrative IT consulting career.

To learn more, please visit www.astirit.com/benefits.aspx.

Best Regards,

Adam Moltisanti

Manager, Marketing and Vendor Relations


Astir IT Solutions, Inc.

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Astir needs E3 visa candidates

February 09, 2015

Astir IT Solutions, Inc., the flagship of the Astir Family of Companies, is looking for candidates who need E3 visa sponsorship.

The Astir Family of Companies has been using the H1B visa sponsorship program for over 10 years.  This program has enabled Astir to attract the best IT talent available... and provide high level IT solutions and services to our clients.  The H1B visa program has been an instrumental recruitment avenue, leading to the exponential grown Astir has experienced over the past few years.

In addition to the H1B visa program, Astir has also sponsored E3 work visas.  The E3 visa program has established in 2005, and is designed specifically for Australian nationals who wish to enter the U.S. to perform services in a "specialty occupation."  A "specialty occupation" is defined by the USCIS as follows: "A theoretical and practical application of a body of specialized knowledge; and the attainment of a bachelor's or higher degree in the specific specialty (or its equivalent) as a minimum for entry into the occupation in the United States."  In determining whether an occupation qualifies as a "specialty occupation," follow the definition contained in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) 214 (i)(1) for H-1B nonimmigrants and applicable standards and criteria determined by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS.)  Please see the USCIS page for more information.

Astir IT has extensive experience sponsoring E3 visa candidates, and wishes to expand upon the success we've had with our E3 visa sponsorship program.  We are seeking qualified individuals with a minimum of a Bachelors Degree in a specialized field who are looking for lucrative employment in the U.S.  If you wish to learn more about E3 sponsorship and employment in the U.S. as an IT consultant, please contact us today.

Astir IT is also looking for qualified individuals on F1-OPT, CPT, and L2 status who are interested in H1B sponsorship.

Best Regards

Adam Moltisanti

Manager, Marketing and Vendor Relations

Astir Analytics


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Quality Assurance Testing for Your Business

December 17, 2014


Quality assurance testing is probably the most critical portion of the application development process.  But software testing should never stop once your system is in place.  Bugs and errors can creep up at the worst possible time, and if left unchecked, they can be a recipe for disaster.

This is especially important since our businesses are now completely reliant on multiple forms of technology.  Internally, our infrastructure, HR department, accounting department, etc. are now all automated.  For some of us, our external products and services include business intelligence and mobile applications; as well as a host of other software and technology.  Therefore, we not only support ourselves with technology, but our technology supports our clients.

Doesn't it make sense for us to ensure that technology continues to operate perfectly?

Astir Analytics has a host of quality assurance testing services that can help identify problems and ensure your IT landscape operates correctly.  Without these QA testing services operating in the background, it is just a matter of time before something goes wrong.

Astir Analytics can provide you with QA testing services that are custom tailored to your exact needs.  We can provide an on-site technical resource, staff a team of testers, or manage an entire QA project from conception to completion.  If you have a QA need, please call me at 908-279-8670 ext. 716 to discuss.

Best Regards,

Adam Moltisanti

Manager, Marketing and Vendor Relations

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Account Based Marketing

October 21, 2014


Below is a whitepaper that discusses Account Based Marketing for niche marketers.  It can also be viewed at: Modern Marketing 101



In an effort to demonstrate impact to business, marketers need a methodology for measuring marketing campaign influence on the sales funnel and revenue.  In order to accomplish this task, two marketing professionals (one from a healthcare technology firm, and one from a marketing and sales analysis firm) worked together in order to shift the marketing campaign perspective to account based marketing, and develop a reporting engine that matches marketing campaign data with sales funnel revenue data.  The resulting reports enabled a true measurement of marketing campaigns influence from the perspective of the sales funnel data.  The measurement showed a significant increase in sales funnel activity for accounts that interacted with marketing campaigns.

Marketers look to drive customer engagement from “brand to demand.”  Traditional marketing efforts look to drive leads to the sales department; and traditional measures include client interaction within both online and offline environments.  This leads to a unique set of challenges for marketing professionals, as they are unable to provide a clear measurement of impact to the sales funnel… which is the exact metric executives demand.  This creates an ongoing struggle for marketing departments who have to demonstrate their organizational worth to stakeholders.

For our specific situation, this challenge was compounded by several factors.  The solutions we provide to customers are quite complex and the average sales cycle is approximately 18 months.  Additionally, operating in a niche market forced us to view leads as interactions within key decision making groups in a finite number of accounts.  This translated into constructing marketing campaigns that focus on the groups who drive the decision making process rather than the hundreds or thousands of new leads that come in from new businesses.

 This represented the first major challenge we faced, as this was a paradigm shift to Account-Based Marketing.  The focus needed to shift to account interactions; consisting of interactions by decision making groups rather than individual contacts.  Marketing strategies were adjusted and marketing campaigns and programs were designed to foster account level interaction throughout the buying cycle.

Once these new programs and campaigns were in place, the second major challenge emerged.  The current measurement methodologies in place needed to change in order to reflect account level engagement.  This new measurement must evaluate the number of accounts and key decision making groups who were participating in marketing programs, campaigns, and events.  Measuring in this fashion would provide a more holistic perspective when compared with measuring email campaign open and click-through rates by the hundreds.

The final, and arguably most difficult, challenge is one that is shared by most marketers: how to measure and demonstrate the influence these new marketing campaigns had on the buying cycle.  This challenge was quite complex, as there was a recent implementation of a customized SalesForce instance that enabled sale velocity measurement.  Ultimately, executives and stakeholders wanted to see how the efforts of the marketing department were impacting sales, including number of closures and velocity from a solutions perspective.

In order to architect a new measurement methodology that would demonstrate the influence of marketing campaigns on the sales funnel, the marketing and sales departments collaborated to identify the following list of questions:

  •         Who within our target organizations were responding to our programs, campaigns, and events?
  •         What solutions where they interested in?
  •         What marketing activities and programs caused them to engage?
  •         What sales and/or opportunities could be attributed to our marketing efforts?
  •         Did interaction at an account level impact the number of opportunities for a particular product?
  •         Did interaction at an account level impact the velocity of individual sales opportunities?

       Those marketers who have implemented Marketing Automation Systems may feel that these questions are easily answered.  These complex applications enable measurement at a high level, including interactions by campaign, trends, etc.  These applications also enable information sharing between marketing and sales, so that available data can be leveraged during the sales cycle.  This is made more efficient if there is a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system (such as SalesForce) integrated into the Marketing Automation Platform.

However, in our case, these challenges were beyond the capabilities of most Marketing Automation Systems.  We needed to measure marketing campaign and program influence at the account level for their products and solutions.  Given the aforementioned definition of account level measurements, this was not possible through usage of the available Marketing Automation Systems and CRM platforms since they record at the individual contact level. 

The reporting demands coming from executives also created another set of complexities in regards to opportunity tracking and velocity.  Most Marketing Automation Systems look at velocity and opportunity tracking at a very high level.  Executives desired to look at campaign influence from a solutions perspective; isolating the exact products targeted by a campaign.  Other Marketing Automation Systems will show collateral solutions information:  I.E.  Marketing campaign A will be measured as to the impact to all solutions, even though it was designed to market product A only.  Isolating the solution set will allow for extremely targeted marketing campaign evaluation.

In order to demonstrate the efficacy of the marketing efforts on the buying cycle, a new data management and reporting process was needed.  This task required a high level of data analytic expertise.  Our organizations worked closely in order to determine a set of business rules for the creation of a new reporting engine.  This reporting engine is capable of combining, cleaning, and housing data from multiple sources, creating a singular environment where it can be retrieved and manipulated.  Additionally, this reporting engine would then apply the complex business rules needed in order to create detailed reports and dashboards.


Due to the complexity and depth of the measurements desired by executives and stakeholders, the reporting output is a combination of manual and systemic analysis.  Complex dashboards are developed through a joint effort of our two organizations.  These dashboards are designed to measure how the account level interactions of individual marketing campaigns and programs influence the number and velocity of sales.

In order to understand the complexity of the reporting capable through the new reporting engine, it is imperative to understand the workflow.  Initially, a “baseline report” would be created for each marketing campaign or program.  This baseline would identify the number and types of sales opportunities currently in the funnel for the individual accounts and solutions targeted by that marketing effort. 

By creating this baseline, marketers are now able to identify several distinct items.  First, this baseline is designed to isolate the solutions that are specifically targeted by that marketing effort, and identify existing sales opportunities.  By identifying existing sales opportunities, we can identify potential solution gaps for individual accounts (referred to as “Whitespace.”)  Identifying existing sales opportunities also enables the measurement of new sales opportunities generated, as well as the value and velocity of all sales opportunities associated with that marketing effort.  Finally, by benchmarking the individual solutions marketed by a campaign, a more focused measurement can be applied.

Next, there are a number of different, complex business rules that are applied to this data that determine exactly how to track, what to track, and the duration of tracking for individual marketing campaigns and programs.  These business rules are agreed upon by sales, sales support, and product marketing; and can evolve to match the specifics of a marketing campaign or to satiate executive requirements.  The marketing department used these reports to understand how marketing campaigns, programs, and elements impacted individual accounts and their sales opportunities.

As this new reporting structure was rolled out into the marketing and sales environment, there was a request from executives to understand an even higher level of marketing campaign impact.  To this point, the new reporting engine was being used to develop dashboards corresponding with individual marketing efforts.  Executives were so pleased with the level of detail that was provided; they wished to understand the overall impact of how all marketing efforts affected the entire sales funnel.  This resulted in a unique scenario.

Given the size of the niche market operated in, the vast scope of the marketing efforts, and the types and numbers of products/solutions marketed there is a high probability of overlap in the accounts and solutions targeted by marketing campaigns.  Therefore, the same or similar sales opportunities could appear in multiple marketing campaign reports.  In order to view an overall marketing impact report, an additional report structure was needed.  A marketing campaign “roll-up” report was created, which utilized an even more complex set of business rules.  This report combines all marketing campaigns, and eliminates any redundancies to present only the unique sales opportunities for the appropriate accounts impacted by marketing efforts.

The structure of the reports provided the Marketing and Sales Departments with a tremendous amount of actionable information.  These reports were run for individual marketing campaigns, programs, and events; as well as overall impact of all marketing efforts.  Once these reports are generated by the reporting engine, additional manual analysis is applied through a joint effort of our organizations to create complex marketing dashboards.  The types of data addressed include:

  •        Number of accounts touched by the marketing campaign
  •        Number of accounts that interacted with the marketing campaign
  •        Number of sales opportunities per account prior to the marketing campaign
  •        Number of new sales opportunities per account generated by the marketing campaign
  •        Number of sales opportunities per account that have changed stage after the marketing campaign
  •        Number of closed-won sales opportunities per account after the marketing campaign
  •        Sales funnel stage per sales opportunity, per account prior to the marketing campaign
  •        Sales funnel stage per sales opportunity, per account after to the marketing campaign
  •        Booking and In-Year value of sales opportunities per account prior to the marketing campaign
  •        Booking and In-Year value of new sales opportunities per account generated by the marketing campaign
  •        Booking and In-Year value of sales opportunities per account that have changed stage after the marketing campaign
  •        Booking and In-Year value of closed-won sales opportunities per account after the marketing campaign

       These measurements allow for a unique evaluation of marketing campaigns.  Marketing efforts can now be viewed as to their impact to specific accounts and/or solutions in the following ways:

  • Increase in sales
  • Velocity of sales
  • Increase in new opportunities
  • Value of sales
  • Value of opportunities
  • Etc.

       The marriage of marketing campaign, sales, and campaign interaction data also enables a measurement of campaign influence between accounts that interacted with a marketing campaign and those who were merely touched by the campaign.  These reports finally allowed for the marketing department to truly measure and demonstrate their influence on the sales funnel.

One of the most powerful measures capable through the use of this new reporting system is the ability to look at marketing campaign influence of accounts that interact versus those that are only touched by a campaign.  Once several months’ worth of these new reports was compiled, trends began to emerge.  Measuring accounts that interacted with marketing campaigns and programs showed a significant impact to the sales funnel.  Below are some highlights from the marketing efforts: 

  •          Accounts with campaign interactions were approximately 20% more likely to have opportunities in the sales funnel
  •          Accounts with campaign interactions were approximately 16% more likely to have sales opportunities with positive movement
  •          Accounts with campaign interactions were approximately 15% more likely to generate new sales opportunities
  •          Accounts with campaign interactions were 11% more likely to have closed-won sales opportunities

       The above findings represent just a fraction of the actionable data made available by shifting to this new measurement methodology.  The new reporting engine and the resulting dashboards have enabled marketers to fully demonstrate their impact to funnel and return on investment (ROI.) The shift to Account-Based Marketing allows for marketing campaigns to be highly targeted and truly nurture individual sales through the buying cycle. This type of trend information allow for our marketers to predict the impact of their campaign against these percentages

As it has become more prevalent among customers to make purchasing decisions by “committee,” it is this group of individuals that must be monitored within an account.  It is their interactions that marketers are now delivering to the sales team as leads; and it is the holistic impact to the individual account and sales funnel that is measured.

Are you making the most of your data?

August 07, 2014


There is a tremendous amount of data available to your organization.  Every action you, your team, your customers, your prospects, etc. take generates data that can be invaluable for your business strategies.  This information can be influential to your processes and workflows, as well as how you market your brand and interact with customers.  Your organization needs to take full advantage of this data; because your competition definitely is.

There are multiple roadblocks that can keep you from accessing this information.  For some organizations, the problem is a matter of collecting and housing that data.  Knowing that there is data available to you, and even knowing how to use that data, is meaningless until you are able to properly gather, cleanse, and house it.  This step may not be very easy, as collection methods can range depending on your target audience and the types of information needed.  Additionally, as the volume of information increases, the likelihood of redundancies, incomplete, and bad data increase; making it abundantly necessary to perform both initial cleansing and routine maintenance.  This is compounded by the need for a system to store, manipulate, and retrieve this information easily and efficiently.

Then there is the problem of what to do with your data.  The knowledge of how to slice apart, massage, and interpret data is not always readily accessible.  Sometimes the problem is as simple as where to start.  you may have access to a ton of data, but have no clue what types of measurements you need to fully leverage this information.  Other times, it is a matter of not knowing how to perform the measurements. Certain types of data analysis, such as median and average measurement are simple; but when you need to look at intervening and mediating variables through the use of regression analysis, you may not have the knowledge or tools.  

Finally, there is the problem of visualization and demonstration.  In order to demonstrate the conclusions and insights drawn from your data to stakeholders, you need the right visuals.  You need to understand how exactly to show data in the correct formats in order for your audiences to easily understand and digest your findings.  Again, the difficulties in this area can be both knowledge share and access to tools.  Either way, unless you have the best charts, graphs, and tables, you may not be able to properly convey impact.

Astir understands these business problems, and specializes in custom designing data solutions.  We have products and services that can help you gather, cleanse, house, retrieve, analyze, and display your data.  We work closely with clients in order to understand their data and reporting needs, and custom design solutions that help leverage data in order to improve businesses.

Give me a call today (908)279-8670 x716 and we can discuss how Astir can help you make the most of your data.


Adam Moltisanti

Manager, Marketing and Vendor Relations

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Using Twitter for Business - 5 Best Practices

July 16, 2014


Twitter is one of the largest and most popular social media platforms; and holds exciting potential for marketing your brand.   With the high volume of existing and prospective customers, a business needs to understand the best practices for Twitter.  Below, Astir has outlined five of the best marketing practices for optimizing your corporate Twitter profile.

1 - Follow... and be followed.

Every business is concerned about how far their message will resonate within social media platforms.  On Twitter, the reach of your brand can be measured by the number of followers your company attracts.  Followers are an excellent indicator of how attention grabbing your Twitter profile is.  While there are many theories behind gaining followers, one of the simplest tactics to employ is to be the first to follow.  This is an often overlook strategy, but following those with similar messages, interests, and solution sets can open the floodgates for your Twitter profile to be noticed... and followed.

This is a very straight forward, and eloquent concept that is akin to complementing someone.  Complimenting someone else's brand will often lead to them complimenting yours.  Following like minded Twitter profiles can open a window to prospective and current customers, potential partners, etc.

2 - It's all in the Headline.

The Headline is an incredibly useful tool on twitter; and the first segment of your text the target population will read.  The use of attention grabbing and entertaining headlines are a great way to attract readers to your content.  Having headlines that are not only relevant to your brand, but relevant to your target populations can help you interact and connect with readers.  Some great examples of headlines that are sure to grab attention include lists, information and advice from influential figures, and "how to" articles.

3 - Look the Part.

There are occasions where having the best content may not always have the desired effect.  The visual elements of your corporate Twitter profile are as important as your content; and are critical to success.  Make sure you have filled out your profile bio, and make sure that your profile picture and cover photo is representative of your brand.  The visual elements of a Twitter profile are often the first thing noticed by readers; so they must be clean and precise.  These visual elements also encompass the content of your Tweets, which should also be concise.  Utilize tools such as www.tinyurl.com to shorten links... saving space for the ever important hash tag.

 4 - Define your Goals.

Like any other aspect of your business, social media usage must have a proper strategy.  The first step is to define what it is you wish to accomplish.  This may include the marketing of a specific product, the increase of website traffic, or strengthening the awareness of your brand.  You should establish your tone as professional, casual (funny when appropriate,) and continuously adjust based upon the response of your target audience.

5 - Just keep Tweeting.

The Twitter social media platform is unique in how it delivers content.  Twitter users can offer followers small amounts of content at a high frequency.  The ideal frequency has been listed as around 3-4 tweets per day, in addition to responding to external interactions.  Tweeting 3 to 4 times a day can help you spread your content in the most efficient manner possible; and help capture the attention of a large number of twitter users.

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Measure marketing campaign effectiveness

April 29, 2014
It is difficult to measure the effectiveness of a marketing campaign.  Gathering data from a campaign can be cumbersome, and most don't have the tools or know-how to properly analyze it.  Without truly understanding this data, resources cannot be used to their full potential and sales leads can slip through the cracks.
Astir Analytics specializes in marketing and sales analytics.  We have the expertise to properly gather, cleanse, analyze, and report on your marketing data.  We have worked with clients on both online and offline marketing campaigns, including email blasts, trade shows, mailers, conferences, and website statistics.
Our unique, custom tools can provide you with a 360 degree view of your marketing campaigns, so you truly understand what works and what doesn't.  We provide the deep insight you need to focus resources and improve your marketing.
Thank you,
Adam Moltisanti
Manager, Marketing & Vendor Relations

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Astir's list management optimization solutions

March 12, 2014

Astir Analytics has a slew of list management services that can improve your marketing and sales.  List management is one of those tasks that is often overlooked by many businesses.  Having the proper contact database in place can save your organization time and resources; and help you build your business.

Astir Analytics has list management services that can help your business create a single, centralized repository for your contact data.  From there, we can design a solution that combines and cleanses your data so you and your employees have easy access to your contact database.  

If you have fragmented contact data and need help with optimization, send me an email (amoltisanti@astiranalytics.com) so we can discuss how Astir can improve your business.

Best Regards,

Adam Moltisanti

Manager, Marketing and Vendor Relations

Data Analysis, Recent Posts, Reporting , ,