Marketers fumbling about in the dark over data deluge

data-414With data flying in to businesses from all angles – and myriad channels – four out of five senior marketers are running “data blind” due to the struggles they are having in keeping on top of everything, amid a raft of new technologies and techniques.
So says a new study by cloud-based operating system Dom, which commissioned Censuswide to quiz over 680 senior marketers around the world on their opinions, routines and plans for the future.
It reveals that analytics, from a vast number of sources, are driving data blindness as marketers lose sight of important KPIs, with four-fifths (80%) feeling the industry as a whole focuses on too many performance metrics.
This is exacerbated by the fact that over three-quarters (78%) of those surveyed admit to chasing short-term results over long-term strategy.
Domo founder and chief executive Josh James said: “Despite having more data about the customer journey than ever before, marketing leaders have more pressure from the business and more challenges in keeping up.
“Today’s hyperkinetic business environment calls for marketers to have a new modus operandi, helping them to balance marketing’s strategic and operational needs, while creating customer value across all marketing activity and clearly communicating it to the bottom line.”
To reduce operational and strategic complexity, almost a quarter (23%) of large businesses are preparing to spend up to 40% of their marketing budget on data management and analytics in the next 12 months. An even greater number (70%) will allocate at least a fifth to this type of technology.
The study also found that as a result of the changing nature of marketing, many senior marketers are finding it difficult to hire the right employees and upskill their current workforce.
More than one-third (35%) of those at large firms said their main recruitment priority is to build a rounded team with a balance of data and creative skills. Skills in data security and compliance were also reported as one of the top three skills being sought after by just under half (45%) of those surveyed as data from across the business becomes more critical to marketing’s success. Not surprisingly, then, creative skills (45%), and data science and analytics skills (42%) were the other top two.
A fifth of all marketers believe the biggest benefit of increased data is the ability to make key marketing decisions faster – and in real-time. In addition, a quarter of respondents say it enables them to build better-informed strategies.
James concluded: “More intelligent use of data is central to a new approach to marketing. The result will be a marketing organisation that creates customer value, increases transparency around results and enables marketers to focus on strategy and execution.”

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