Study Finds Marketers On Technology Overload

Marketers deploy an average of five media and marketing tools, purchase ad space and targeting options from multiple vendors, and buy a variety of ads -- all of which might be too much to get the job done, according to a recent study.

The study, "Simplifying Media Buying," commissioned by advertising software company SteelHouse and completed by Forrester Consulting, surveyed 153 marketing decision-makers in the U.S.

Some 84% of marketers use site analytics, 82% use marketing performance measurement, 80% use content marketing asset management, 78% use data management platforms like DMPs, and 77% use marketing attribution.

Some 48% of survey respondents pointed to a lack of information-sharing as the biggest challenge when buying media, followed by 48% who cited lack of transparency on pricing of media buys. Optimization also has become a major challenge, with 42% citing the inability to do so.

About 39% also say they lack support from vendors, and 39% have too many vendors to manage.

The study suggests that a one-platform approach with the right pricing model can help. Eighty-six percent of respondents said a single platform would have a high impact on the ability to measure marketing’s impact on business as a whole. Additionally, marketers who preferred cost-per-impression (CPM) pricing said they were more likely to report increased performance.

About 53% of marketers said that those with CPM with margin included offers the most flexibility, more than the 48% who preferred a flat price based on data use or 35% who preferred a licensing fees. Marketers also said that CPM with margin is more likely to reduce the risk of poor ad performance than the other models tested.

The study also comes with recommendations. Forrester suggests that marketers should avoid choosing ad-tech tools based on inward-facing metrics like click-through rates, and to simplify the technology stack to reduce the number of duplication ad capabilities.

While companies may need a variety of technologies, it's clear that some marketers spend too much time leaning new tools and not enough time trying to figure out how to use and integrate them into what works.

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