There seem to be several key questions we should be asking and answering.
- Why are results different than we expected?
- What do we expect to happen in the short term?
- Are there opportunities that would put us on a better trajectory?
The first typically focuses on exploration, discovery and detective work since we have an outcome and need to understand why it occurred. These analysts have a strong desire to solve a riddle posed by deviations from existing marketing plans.
The second usually means estimating the future by understanding how business changes as a result of past activities. These analysts want to create order out of chaos and link causes to effects to create a better marketing plan next time.
And the third is the most improvisational of all since it requires imagining a new future and then working backwards. These analysts focus on the art of the possible and conjure up completely new marketing plans.
A good team will have a mix of these skills.