Marketers' Biggest Challenge Is Quantifying ROI

Senior marketers around the world are focused on staying abreast of new marketing technologies to ensure they remain ahead of the curve, according to a new global survey conducted by the programmatic marketing and analytics firm DataXu.

In our increasingly digital-first world, 78% of U.S. marketers point to understanding marketing technologies as a particularly important skill critical to their mission. A hefty 72% think grasping digital media is crucial to succeeding in the industry, and 65% find it necessary to be data literate.

In the U.S. market, senior marketers find that the single greatest challenge in their jobs is developing an accurate way to quantify ROI across the variety of channels. Likewise, 41% of global marketers and 37% of U.S. marketers find that the biggest challenge they face is developing an efficient marketing mix across channels to drives that ROI.

Globally, 23% of marketers caution that their teams are stretched due to using too many marketing technology platforms and vendors at the same time. Some marketers work with up to 10 or more platforms across the marketing landscape.



Difficulties tracking the success of a marketing campaign and visibility into metrics was cited by one-third of global marketers as the largest threat to the success of their team.

In order to address some of these difficulties in measurement, some firms are attempting an experimental approach to measuring ROI. Randomizing investments by deploying existing budgets across various channels, while measuring business outcomes, can pinpoint where a campaign is most successful. "This methodology identifies the causal link between media investments and business outcomes -- sales or brick-and-mortar foot traffic," Gar Smyth, VP of marketing at DataXu, told Real-Time Daily via email. This approach effectively transforms a media plan into a controlled experiment that has no need for user-level data, 

Going forward, DataXu looks to focus on “applying data science, predictive analytics, machine learning and experimental design, to help marketing drive business value and become increasingly accountable for business success.”

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