New study by PAC: Digital marketing is data-driven and essential to corporate strategy

The role of marketing has evolved considerably in recent years, driven by changes in customer buying behavior and digital innovation. Marketing departments are increasingly involved in strategic decisions, and marketers are tasked with contributing proactively to the growth of their company.

In the complex marketing environment of companies, it has become difficult for marketing managers to gain new profitable insights from the multitude of available data. The more marketing channels are used and individual solutions are applied in dialog with the customer, the greater the chance for marketing departments to gain a comprehensive understanding of their customers and to address them in a targeted manner.

Moreover, marketing managers must keep an eye on many different channels and use a variety of solutions, each of which generate their own reports and data. Merging the data and deriving insights from it in the next step is characterized by many manual processes in the marketing departments of companies. This renders the data analysis time-consuming and not scalable. In addition to the time factor, it is now more important than ever for marketing departments to align their performance data with information about sales, expenses etc.

In order to get a better overview of the status quo and future development in the field of marketing intelligence in Germany, France and the UK, PAC questioned 450 decision-makers in May 2020, asking about their views and opinions. The study, commissioned by Datorama, Salesforce, aims to provide a current overview of how companies are integrating and analyzing their marketing-related data, and what challenges they are faced with.

The results of the study show that companies are careful in their choice of marketing channels and also keep track of and measure the performance of the individual channels. When analyzing their multiple communication channels, the companies surveyed pursue different approaches: from the use of specific BI and MI solutions through to manual data management via spreadsheet applications. In assessing the effectiveness of individual marketing campaigns, many organizations rely on proven and quantifiable methods, such as sales increases and/or cost reductions. Changes in customer satisfaction play an increasing role in measuring success. At present, the value can be measured approximately, but not as accurately as KPIs that are closely tied to growth.

The challenges that marketing departments face are manifold. In most cases, they can be traced back to the lack of quality data, as well as the heterogeneity of information needs among individual stakeholders (both internal and external). A conducive corporate culture and adequate support from top management are present in some cases, but not comprehensively in the three countries observed.


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