Data-driven marketing and advertising is proving its mettle by dominating business practices across the world, according to a new study which shows investment is rising as more and more chief executives, chief marketing officers and business leaders recognise the importance of data.
The third edition of the annual Global Review of Data-Driven Marketing & Advertising – published by the Global Direct Marketing Association (GDMA) – shows data has become an indispensable marketing asset: 79.6% of global survey respondents said customer data is critical to their marketing and advertising efforts.
While this is a slight dip from the 81.3% and 80.4% of panellists, respectively, who voiced similar sentiments over the past two years, its resilience is plain to see.
More than anything else, growing investment in data reflects the importance that marketers vest in the customer and their experience, the study claims. Some 89.6% of those surveyed said that their practice of data-driven marketing was focused, at least in part, on the maintenance of customer and prospect databases – with those resources typically aimed at supporting better and more relevant offers and general customer communications.
Apparently, 2016 was “The Year of Measurement”. Larger numbers of panellists declared their organisations “sophisticated” when it comes to cross-channel campaign measurement as well as campaign measurement across single marketing channels.
Meanwhile over half said they had increased their spending in 2016 compared to the previous year. Perhaps unsurprisingly spend increased the most across digital channels and related execution functions, as it has for the past two years.
The Global Review is claimed to be the largest study of its kind undertaken by a global consortium of marketing associations and is conducted jointly by GDMA and Winterberry Group.
These findings were put together through an online survey of 3,283 thought leaders spanning across the advertising, marketing, media and technology industries in 18 countries, between July and October 2016.
GDMA chair Jodie Sangster, who is also chief executive of the Australian DMA, said: “It’s a positive sign for marketers to see more and more CEOs and Board members understanding the value and importance of data. However, in order for businesses to thrive and deliver on customer experience, emphasis must be placed on sophisticated data management and analytics models.
“Also at the heart of the data-driven revolution is building consumer trust – as businesses look at securing more personal data from consumers, consumers value transparency and want to know if their information is being well-protected. Moving forward, trust will and should play a critical role in an organisation’s business strategy.”
DMA UK managing director Rachel Aldighieri added: “Of all the countries surveyed, UK marketers came top when asked about the importance of data, highlighting how quickly it has become a critical part of all marketing and advertising campaigns.
“However, with this increased importance comes the need for us, as an industry, to ensure we’re building relationships based on transparency and trust. By acting responsibly and putting customers first marketers can create an exchange of value between your business, looking to prosper, and the customer, looking to benefit.”
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