Regular readers of my blog know that I've always been an advocate of measurement. A career in database marketing opened my eyes to the power of data and its ability to accurately assist marketing efforts. Attending the Webtrends Engage 2009 Conference was quite an inspiration and has really put me on a crusade to ensure companies measure and analyze their online marketing strategies.
I think the entire theme of the book may be summed up in a single sentence:
We see the struggle of intuition, personal experience, and philosophical inclination waging war against the brute force of numbers.
Ayres provides colorful examples from across the spectrum in medicine, government, education, the movie industry… and even wine selection… to support crunching the numbers. All the examples support the premise that data collection and comprehensive analysis (with some special attention to regression analysis) can provide us with the knowledge to improve and even predict business results.
Even if you're not a fan of analysis, this is a great book for any businessman or marketer to pick up.