Every company determined to pursue ROI marketing should take a cue from this exchange in The Untouchables between Sean Connery's Jim Malone and Kevin Costner's Elliot Ness.

ROI marketing allows companies to build competitive strategies based on powerful, data-driven insights, but this potentially game-changing approach to marketing is not for the faint of heart.

Malone's interrogation of Ness about his commitment to the daunting task of pursuing Al Capone lies at the heart of the drama in the Untouchables. Yet, when it comes to developing an ROI and optimization framework, drama is often just the beginning.

So the question is, "What are you prepared to do? And then what are you prepared to do" to be a true ROI marketer?

This question of commitment is an essential consideration when pursuing the extremely challenging, if ultimately rewarding, goal of ROI marketing. Companies that take on this challenge should be commended, but few are prepared for the significant enterprise-wide transformation that it takes to be successful.

No matter how savvy the marketer, the impact that ROI marketing will have on the corporate culture can be an eye-opening experience. ROI isn't just a nifty tool to keep vendors in line. The infrastructure frameworks that serve the ROI model will lay bare the decisions of everyone who touches the marketing program, and that includes you.

So what must you be prepared to do if and when your company embarks on the lofty quest of ROI marketing?

1. Be prepared to bear the scrutiny that ROI marketing introduces to the organization

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lauren Tucker is Director of Consumer Forensics at The Martin Agency (www.martinagency.com), where she and her team help clients turn data into actionable strategies.