According to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s survey of high-level marketing executives worldwide, more than 80% say they need to restructure marketing to better support the business. And 29% believe the need for change is urgent.
Marketers believe that change will occur in six areas, suggests the report:
Three of the four most widely cited investments are aimed at reaching customers through different channels: via social networks, on mobile devices and on the old standby of e-mail. The fourth, analytics, is needed to knit together data from multiple channels into a coherent and actionable portrait of the consumer.
Where marketing organization is most likely to increase its investment in technology over the next 3-5 years (% respondents)
Two trends to watch, says the report: real-time personalized mobile, and the Internet of Things. Just over half of marketers expect the Internet of Things, where ubiquitous, embedded devices with unique IP addresses constantly convey real-time data, to revolutionize marketing by 2020. Almost the same proportion cites the power of real-time personalized mobile communications as the trend with the biggest impact.
Future Trends That Will Have The Biggest Impact On Marketers By 2020 (% of Respondents)
According to the research, marketers see four trends:
A Broader View Of Customer Experience
A positive customer experience across all touchpoints is increasingly seen as a company’s most valuable asset. And, more than any other function, marketing is responsible for managing it, across the customer life cycle and across channels, from initial awareness through loyalty and advocacy.
Metrics For Revenue And Engagement
Effectiveness trumps efficiency, especially in a time of rapid change. Metrics will become broader and more comprehensive, focusing on top-line revenue and overall engagement more than efficiency and brand awareness.
Top Areas Of Investment Over The Next 12 Months (% of Respondents)
The Talent Hunt
There is a need for tech-savvy marketers. But it’s not enough by itself. CMOs want people with the ability to grasp and manage the details (in data, technology and marketing operations) combined with a view of the strategic big picture. Creative is still important (especially in B2C), but it is a legacy skill and no longer a focus of demand, says the report
The Ecosystem In The Future
Marketing technology is proliferating through the cloud to the point where almost all companies, even the smallest ones, use multiple systems operating within an overall marketing operating system. Despite expectations of consolidation around a few dominant enterprise suppliers, marketers believe that the number of systems in their companies will grow.
Biggest Challenges Over The Next 12 Months (% Of Respondents)
The report concludes by opining that what marketers need today is the ability to observe and interact with customers 24/7 to understand their needs and deliver what they want at the time they want it. Theoretically, this is not far-fetched, says the report. The foundations of the Internet of Things and real-time personalized mobile messaging, the two trends survey respondents highlighted as having the biggest impact on marketing by 2020, have already been laid. But practice is more difficult, says the report. Customers no longer come in solely through the front door. They engage at different stages, wandering in and out of a store with no walls.
For additional information from Marketo about the Economist Intelligence Unit please access the PDF file here with charts and graphs.