A Story About Metrics

There’s no doubting that Stanley Kubrick was a f**king genius when it comes to making movies. But the man was ahead of his time in using metrics to best identify his markets for A Clockwork Orange.

To choose the right theater in each city, we needed to know which cinema sold the most tickets to the most interesting pictures. But while a studio would know what its own films grossed, detailed box-office figures of competitive films were closely held secrets. There was no comparative information, and that is exactly what Stanley wanted.

While the story provided is an interesting slice-of-history in how the modern box office report came to be, I think that the lesson here is a good one for marketers: metrics are hugely important, and they may be hiding in any number of places.

If we’re to get to next-generation marketing (a subject of one of my future posts), thinking about non-conventional sources of data is something every marketer is going to need to associate themselves with. There’s mountains of public data out there and it all predicts or influences behaviors — we just need to be smart enough to track down that data and make use of it.

Full story about Kubrick’s breakthrough at Moviefone.