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Inside CDP with B.C. LeDoux: A Q&A on Creative Digital Performance

By Jeff Deikis

February 24, 2024

Q&A about creative digital performance marketing

Consider the image of a lighthouse on a dark, stormy night. This lighthouse stands tall and solitary on a rugged coastline, its powerful beam cutting through the thick veil of fog and darkness. 

Around it, the sea churns wildly, and the night swallows every source of light, save for the lighthouse itself. Its beam is a guide, a beacon of safety and hope in the treacherous waters, visible from miles away to those seeking direction.

This lighthouse is more than just a structure; it’s a symbol of resilience.  It shines brightly in the face of obscurity and adversity.

Standing out in the fast-paced digital world requires more than just cutting-edge tech or data smarts. It takes a beacon of creativity, innovation and passion to light the way. It takes creative digital performance marketing

Creative Digital Performance (CDP) stands out by emphasizing the creation of personalized and emotionally engaging campaigns that delve into real human needs and behaviors. 

It combines the art of creativity with the science of data analysis for more impactful, innovative results, ensuring marketing efforts stay competitive and relevant in the rapidly evolving digital landscape.

It’s the beacon on a seaside cliff on that dark and stormy night. 

We asked Noble’s Chief Creative Officer/Partner, B.C. LeDoux, to explain more about the strategic approach. How does blending art with science and mixing data with creativity, drive us forward to generate performance?

You have about 15 good seconds to explain CDP to your elevator companion. What do you say? 

Wow, this is a fast elevator. Oh, CDP. Well, it’s not about best practices, which can quickly become past practices. It’s about better practices. Should I tell you more?

Is it fair to categorize CDP as part art and part science?

Yes, exactly. Pencils and paintbrushes meet calculators and number crunching. Big data meets big ideas. It’s about being informed by data, but not driven by it. We pull insights from behavioral and psychographic data, but we still need to apply our human lens, context and creative thinking.

Being better every day involves constantly refining and evolving marketing strategies, methodologies and approaches to stay ahead of the curve and adapt to changing trends as people do, and just as importantly, before competitors.

A key tenant of CDP is “Not Best Practices But Better Practices.” How does one prevent best or better practices from becoming outdated practices?

The key is just the acknowledgment that best practices are not a forever thing. You can’t set it and forget it, because things change too quickly, so you will end up with past practices if you’re not constantly trying to improve. If you’re always tinkering and tweaking, asking “why?” and “what if?,” then you will continually be making best practices better.

Why is it important to understand the “why” of people’s behavior online? 

“Why?” is the root of any data. If you’re only interested in what people do but not why they do it, you’ll always be a step behind, waiting for them to tell you what you should do next. If you understand why people click what they click, watch what they watch, buy what they buy, you will be a step ahead, creating valuable personally relevant experiences that people happily connect with.

What makes the distinction between being data-driven and data-informed critical?

Being driven by data means you’re in the passenger seat along for the ride, potentially watching passively while your self-driving car is headed down the wrong road–even though you can clearly see the detour signs. Being informed by data means you’re the one driving, but you have an awesome co-pilot helping you navigate–but ultimately you have control of the wheel and can make adjustments along the way, based on context, that get you where you’re trying to go in a bit better way.

What, if any, role does AI play in Creative Digital Performance?

AI is already such an important tool, and will become increasingly important when it comes to creative digital performance marketing. AI can calculate massive amounts of data quickly and see trends that would take humans so long to be able to see. So we can use AI to process all this data, and often make adjustments, while we focus on the insights and what that means for the bigger picture. AI is made so much more powerful when we can apply human creativity and vision to it. AI as a tool ultimately means we can do more thinking and less doing.

Why is passion such an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to campaigns? What kind of difference does it make when your agency is invested in your brand?

Passion is just a difference maker in humans overall. If you think about any pursuit in life, passion is the X-Factor. If two lawyers are equally educated and equally talented, the one with more passion and hunger is always going to prevail. Professional athletes are often blessed with natural talent that is within .01% of each other, but it’s their passion or lack thereof that is the game changer. So if most agencies have the same tools available to them, what makes a difference is the passion they apply day in and day out to being better. And we have a really f*cking passionate team that is invested in our philosophies, processes, tools and most importantly our clients’ success. So, yeah, it matters.

Marketers must grapple with the challenge of standing out and making an impact in a world where people see thousands upon thousands of messages every day.

How do valuable personally relevant experiences (VPREs) come into play when we’re talking about CDP? 

Can we get more acronyms into this question please? Anyway, valuable personally relevant experiences are what we strive to create, and creative digital performance is how we get there.

When you create a valuable experience that is personally relevant to someone, it builds a connection, and connection leads to conversion–over and over and over. Every marketer should be striving toward this goal. 

To do that, you need deep insights into people’s wants, needs and behavioral drivers. If you think about gift giving, the best, more personal gifts are given when the gift giver knows the most about the recipient, their interests and what they hold dear. Same thing goes for marketing experiences. And to get that kind of information and insight, it’s best to approach things with balance that blends data and human thinking.

What makes settling for “good enough” a potentially limiting approach?

There’s very little chance that the best CMOs in the world have “It’s Good Enough” motivational cat posters hanging on their office walls.

“Good enough” one day can quickly become “not good enough.” Whether you call it creative digital performance marketing or some other philosophy, every brand should be applying data-informed insights to creative, imaginative thinking. That is always going to yield the best results. You can move the needle for a while obsessing with a performance mindset, but eventually, you will plateau. And you can move the needle quickly with wildly creative thinking. But ultimately, for sustained success, day in and day out, you need to marry performance thinking with creative thinking. By leveraging each other, results build upon results in a constant pursuit of better.

“Good enough” does have its place, don’t get me wrong. As they say, “don’t let perfection get in the way of progress.” So when you are in a testing and experimental mindset, “good enough” is often exactly the mindset you need so you can get something launched and learn from it, tweak it and improve it. In that case “good enough” is an attempt to make progess, fail, succeed and ulimately create something better that helps you reach your goals.

As we’ve explored the transformative power of Creative Digital Performance (CDP), it’s clear that staying ahead in the digital marketing game requires innovation, creativity and a deep understanding of human behavior. 

To dive deeper into how CDP can revolutionize your marketing strategy, download our comprehensive guide to Creative Digital Performance Marketing. Unlock the secrets to creating more personalized, impactful, and emotionally resonant campaigns today.

About B.C. LeDoux

B.C. LeDoux, Noble’s Chief Creative Office and Partner, thrives in the digital marketing field with over two decades of experience, blending ambition with creativity to solve unique client challenges. 

His leadership has earned him recognition as a Top 40 Under 40 in Las Vegas, Reno Ad Person of the Year and more, contributing to award-winning campaigns for brands like Atlantis Bahamas, Hard Rock International, Visit Lake Tahoe, Santa Monica, Yosemite Mariposa and Visit San Luis Obispo

A University of Nevada, Reno alum, B.C. enjoys tennis, outdoor adventures and is a proud member of several boards, reflecting his dynamic professional and personal life.

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