Merry Marketers: They're Happier Despite Privacy Issue, Customer Demands

Marketers are feeling better about themselves: 87% now feel their work provides greater value than it did a year ago -- up from 77% who felt that way in 2021, according to this year’s State of Marketing report by Salesforce. 

They certainly have their work cut out for them.

For one thing, 71% say that meeting customer expectations is more difficult than a year ago. And the same percentage say it is harder to retain employees than it was a year ago.  

Then there is the privacy issue, and the pending loss of third-party cookies.

Of those polled, 68% have a fully defined strategy to shift toward first-party data. In line with that, they are taking these actions to prepare for privacy changes: 

- Providing information, sharing incentives for customers — 56% 

- Creating a first-party data strategy — 54%

- Creating second-party data-sharing agreements — 52% 



- Investing in new technologies (e.g., a customer data platform — 51%

- Reducing internal data silos — 49%

Why should marketers feel good? Perhaps because most say their external messaging reflects their corporate values. This includes 93% of high performers, 87% of moderate performers and 70% of underperformers. 

At the same time, marketers have made these changes since the start of the pandemic:

  • Targeted new customer segments — 38%  
  • Investment in collaboration technologies — 38% 
  • Investment in digital-first experiences — 37% 
  • Changed our business model — 37% 
  • New product fulfillment options — 38%
  • Expanded geographical targets — 35% 
  • Investments in process/workflow automation — 38% 
  • Expanded product offerings — 35%

Email remains the dominant channel for marketers, and the number of outbound campaigns increased by 15% in the last year. But it is losing ground slightly to SMS.  

In Q2, email constituted 84% of outbound message sends, and SMS made up 16%. However, email's share is down from 88% in Q2 2021 and 96% in Q2 2020. 

How are brands allocating their marketing budgets? In B2B, they are stretching them to meet these priorities: 

  • Advertising — 16% 
  • Content—15% 
  • Account-based marketing—15%
  • Tools and technology—14% 
  • Events and sponsorships—13% 
  • Agency support—13% 
  • People—12% 
  • Other—2% 

In B2C, the budget priorities are as follows:

  • Advertising—18%
  • Content—17%
  • Tools and technology—16%
  • Events and sponsorships—16% 
  • Agency support—Agency support—15%
  • People—15%
  • Other—3% 

But they are increasingly using AI, for these purposes:

  • Automate customer integrations—90% 
  • Automate data integration—89% 
  • Personalize the customer journey across channels—88%
  • Process automation (e.g., reporting)—88%
  • Resolve customer identity—87%
  • Bridge online and offline experiences—87% 
  • Drive best offers in real-time—77% 
  • Programmatic advertising and media buying—75%
  • Predicting customer/prospect behavior—74%
  • Improve customer segmentation/lookalike audience modeling—74% 

Most of these areas improved by a point or two. One exception is using AI to bridge online and offline experiences: It great from 71% in 2021 to 89%. 

In contrast, the 77% using AI to drive best offers in real time has slid from 89% last year. And using AI for programmatic advertising and media buying has fallen to 75% from 81% last year.  

On a positive note, 68% overall can now measure and attribute results in real time. This ranges from 61% even for underperformers to 71% for high performers. 

How do they measure success? Of this sample, 88% track revenue. That’s up from 78% in 2021. In addition, 87% analyze customer satisfaction metrics (up from 75% last year), and 87% look at web/mobile analytics (versus 71% in 2021). 

In addition, 85% look at customer acquisition costs (up from 73%) and 85% the marketing/sales funnel.

Finally, email is also one of the main internal communication tools. Companies now use: 

Video conferencing—46% 

Channel-based collaboration platform—45% 

Instant messaging or chat apps—45% 

Enterprise social networks—44% 


Shared documents—42% 

Voice messaging—41%


Virtual whiteboards—36%

Salesforce surveyed 6,000 marketers worldwide, including the U.S., Europe and Asia. Of those, 30% are from firms with 21-100 employees, 50% from companies with 101-3,500 employees) and 20% from enterprise organizations with over 3,500). The  




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