Email, while tied to every form of digital marketing, has sunk to fourth among the most effective tactics, according to Marketing Resource Effectiveness, a study by Ascend2.
Email marketing campaigns are seen as effective by 39%. In contrast, 53% say social media is effective, while 48% feel that way about content marketing and 47% about search engine optimization.
Yet email is seen as the least difficult activity, identified by only 21%. The most challenging tactic, cited by 49%, is data and AI-driven marketing, followed by content campaigns (38%), programmatic advertising (34%) and search engine optimization (33%).
In perceived effectiveness, email beats marketing automation campaigns (28%), data and AI-driven marketing (25%) and programmatic advertising (18%).
Ascend2 and its Researcher Partners surveyed 227 marketers.
Overall, 34% say their strategies are very successful, or best-in-class, while 62% say they are somewhat successful and 5% say they are not successful.
Their primary strategic objectives are:
The challenges are in a slightly different order
Of the companies surveyed, 75% rely on a combination of outsourced and in-house resources. In addition, 13% outsource to specialists and 12% use in-house resources only.