Josh Blacksmith

by Josh Blacksmith

As some of you may recall, in 2014, Warren Buffet hosted an NCAA Men’s Basketball March Madness bracket challenge: If entrants were to make every pick correctly (63 games), they would win one billion dollars. It drew a massive number of entries, but Warren had little to fear – the odds of getting every pick right on a bracket are one in over nine quintillion.[1] So, yes, I’m saying “there’s a chance” you can go perfect, but it’s clearly not likely. Now, I believe I’m a very rational person, but every year after I build out my bracket, I step away believing mine is sure to be a winner (don’t we all?). This phenomenon is a cognitive bias known as illusory superiority, “whereby individuals overestimate their own qualities and abilities, relative to others.”[2] Of course, once the results start to hit, I quickly realize just how flawed my picking ability really is. My point is this: In marketing, much like in picking your March Madness brackets, we generally make predictions and assumptions based on the set of available data, but we can never be certain in anything we do until after we let the results play out. That’s the amazing thing about what we do every day – no one embraces failing fast as much as data driven marketers who realize it’s the only real way to uncover successful hypotheses.

Read More

by Josh Blacksmith

2015-16 was a great year of continuing to build momentum at the CADM – new mission, new Board structure, new membership levels, new sponsorship opportunities, new programming and networking approach – AND A LOT OF NEW PEOPLE!

Read More

by Josh Blacksmith

October is an annual opportunity for scares (and candy), but every four years we also get to experience the scare of another impending presidential election. If there’s one thing we in the direct response community can all agree on, regardless of which way you lean politically, it’s that the election cycle is also an amazing catalyst for innovation for data driven marketers. New tools, new analytical methodologies, new polling approaches to spin stories in every direction imaginable. I, for one, am excited to see the case studies that come from this year’s election process – and am anxious to look for opportunities to apply some of the learnings to my clients’ businesses.

Read More

by Josh Blacksmith

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, I find myself reflecting on what I’m grateful for in the past year, and one thing in particular jumps out at me in my role with this association: the commitment and involvement of the entire CADM membership. Your contributions are what make the CADM great. It continues to be an exciting time in our transformation, and I sincerely appreciate your ongoing support for this association and, more importantly, our collective practice.

Read More