Get ready for the dawning of engagement scientists

What do you get when you cross a data scientist with a marketing pro? You get an engagement scientist—the next step in the evolution of data science and how it can work for marketers who are looking to engage audiences with the help of all available data.

As data solutions become more widely available and affordable for more organizations, marketers can expect this area to grow in the year ahead.

"Engagement science enables seamless integration between data and marketing strategies," SendGrid's vice president of product and marketing Paul Ford wrote in this Marketing Land article. "It provides a platform for marketers and data scientists to interact with customers in a meaningful way. Engagement scientists create a better, stronger understanding of how customers interact with their brands, then implement strategic decisions based on analysis."

So, engagement scientists specialize in linking marketing decisions with real-world metrics like clicks or open rates through statistical modeling. They focus on the data and drive decisions based on what's really going on, as opposed to theories of what may happen.

Data science specialists could be the missing link between marketing, engineering and data science teams that brings those worlds together.

"Think of an engagement scientist as a multiple-hat-wearing mind. This person (or team) understands what constitutes value and success to marketers and knows how to measure it. An engagement scientist also grasps statistics and can identify the difference between cause and correlation," Ford wrote.

And this new breed of engagement scientist doesn't necessarily have to come in from outside of an organization—they could already be in-house. Discussing the parameters of what your organization needs from an engagement science specialist is the first step, and many marketing and data pros could be brought up to speed with some specialized training (and making sure the two sides understand where the other is coming from).

"Like all new spaces, engagement science isn't yet well understood. This can result in slow or seemingly no progress at first. Everyone involved should approach this new space by being 100 percent honest about what he or she does and doesn't understand," Ford wrote.

For more:
- Read the full article at Marketing Land

Related articles:
Salesforce Marketing Cloud rolls out predictive analytics tool 
For Big Data success, know your prospects 
Marketers should focus on data quality 
Keys to achieving true data-driven marketing optimization