NEWS1 October 2021

Majority of marketers not using data to aid marketing decisions

Data analytics Europe News Technology

FRANCE – The majority of chief marketing officers are now responsible for data and technology, but most are not using data to inform marketing decision-making, according to research by management consultancy Capgemini.

woman working at desk

The report from the Capgemini Research Institute, ‘A new playbook for chief marketing officers’, surveyed 1,600 marketing executives, finding that the role has expanded beyond the traditional remit of brand building and marketing.

Over two-thirds of respondents ( 76%) reported that they are responsible for contributing to the overall growth of the business (revenue and profit generation).

Additionally, 74% are responsible for the data and technology function and 69% are responsible for customer experience.

According to the research, around a third of chief marketing officers are directly responsible for gathering and understanding consumer and market intelligence, trends, and for overseeing marketing technologies including customer relationship management (CRM) tools or marketing automation platforms.

Meanwhile, 60% said that they are involved in critical decisions related to growth and long-term value, such as growth strategy and new product development.

While most of the marketers surveyed are using data in some way, the research found that most are not applying it to inform marketing decisions – 43% said that their teams use it to decide on a go-to-market strategy for a new product or service, and 40% use data to modify their campaign strategies. Fewer than half ( 45%) report having access to a customer data platform that offers a unified single view of customer data.

While half ( 49%) of marketers said they have technology such as AI to automate customer segmentation and grouping, only 38% said that customer segment and persona data is available to them. Additionally, only 36% agreed with the statement that ‘data is available in the required format to inform our decision-making in marketing’ in relation to external third-party data such as surveys, market research or census data.

Capgemini identified a cohort of ‘data-driven marketers’ from the research by assessing marketing functions against dimensions including data importance, availability and gathering, and cross-functional collaboration, including with marketing and IT.

Of the marketing executives surveyed for the report, 11% were categorised as ‘data-driven’, and of those, 88% said that they can adapt and change content based on real-time data, compared with 38% of those defined as ‘traditional marketers’, i.e. those who did not qualify as ‘data-driven’ for the purposes of the research.

The report also looked at organisations’ work with suppliers including marketing agencies and data providers, with half of marketers agreeing that they are increasingly trying to build internal skills and capabilities rather than partnering with external vendors.

It found that 60% are working with data providers, with 18% claiming that they plan to bring this capability in-house in the next two to three years.

Jean-Pierre Villaret, head of Frog Europe, part of Capgemini Invent, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated digitisation in a way no one could have predicted. Customer data volumes are growing as online sales increase. This provides a host of opportunities for chief marketing officers and marketing departments to better understand and serve their customers.

“A section of marketers are achieving the full potential of data-driven, real-time marketing and realising the benefits it brings with regards to brand awareness, customer satisfaction, retention, and conversion. The task now – for the vast majority of marketers – is to modernise their data capabilities and up-and-reskill their workforces in order to stay competitive.”

Capgemini surveyed 1,600 marketing executives with a business-to-consumer (B2C) focus in 14 countries in March and April 2021. The majority of organisations included ( 93%) reported at least $1bn in revenue for the most recent financial year.