WFA Report Finds Transformation Hampered By Attitudes, Corporate Cultures

A new report on digital marketing transformation from the WFA finds that 37% of multinational companies are “just beginning the journey.” 

But over 30% say they are “progressing well” and 22% claimed to be “‘well advanced.” 

Barriers to transformation, the report finds, include attitudes, corporate cultures and ways of working. 

The research was conducted with Dentsu management consultancy Dentsu Schema, the WFA’s official “strategic partner” for marketing transformation. It identifies five key differences between marketers that have made progress and those that are still in the early stages: 

  1. Half of “advanced” organizations have active support from the C-Suite compared to 4% of organizations at the early stages of transformation.
  2. Transformation is accelerated when executive leadership views marketing as a proven driver of growth. This is the case at 43% of advanced organizations but only 15% of early-stage companies.
  3. A third of advanced organizations state they invest significantly in the training and development needed for successful transformation. The numbers are much lower (single digits) for those marketers that have not made much progress.
  4. Organizations need the capacity and freedom to succeed, which half of “well advanced” marketers state they provide.
  5. Companies that have made the most transformation progress also tend to have a “clear and actionable transformation roadmap.” Most of the laggards do not.   



The report, “Marketing Transformation: Delivering The Future Fit Organization,” is based on a survey of 56 respondents spending more than $83 billion in global advertising. All respondents were in senior leadership roles within their companies, with 63% being in a global role, and the remainder having regional responsibilities. 

The full report is on the WFA website but access is restricted to the group’s members.




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