Social media and big data will be key to the future success of business, most chief marketing officers believe. But most also have doubts about their companies’ ability to make effective use of
the information obtained from these sources.
That’s according to a new IBM study, “Stepping up the challenge: How CMOs can start to close the aspirational gap,” based on
a survey of over 500 CMOs from in 19 industries around the world.
Overall, 94% of CMOs surveyed believe big data analytics will be crucial to their companies’ performance, but
82% believe their companies still don’t know how to analyze big data; that figure is actually higher than 2011, when 71% said they felt unprepared.
In addition, 66% of CMOs surveyed
said their companies are unprepared to handle social media, where the “rate of change seems faster than many can cope with.” That’s a slight improvement over 68% in 2011.
The uncertainty comes as CMOs are getting more responsibility, with 63% of CEOs involving CMOs in business strategy planning. Asked about their plans over the next five years, 94% of
CMOs expect to introduce advance predictive analytics, 94% mobile applications and 89% more digital customer relationship management tools.
This is just the latest in a series of
studies showing that while execs recognize social media’s tremendous potential, they are unsure what to do with it, or even who should be responsible for it.
Last year, a survey by
the Creative Group found 39% of advertising and marketing executives said they think social media belongs in the public relations/communications wheelhouse, compared to 35% who said it should be the
responsibility of the marketing department. Also, 15% said it should be delegated to customer service, and 5% said it should be the direct responsibility of the company’s CEO. (6% said they
Another survey by Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business found that CMOs don’t think social media is sufficiently coordinated with other marketing
efforts. Only 9.9% of CMOs surveyed said they think social media is “very integrated” with their firm’s overall marketing strategy, and 15.2% said they don’t believe it is
integrated at all.