NEWS29 April 2022

Marketing effectiveness dropped by a quarter in 2021

News Trends UK

UK – Marketing effectiveness fell 23% in 2021, although brand effectiveness saw a small increase, according to research from the Data and Marketing Association (DMA) and Salesforce.

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The latest edition of the Meaningful Marketing Measurement study found that the average campaign generated 2.4 effects in 2021, down from 3.1 effects in 2020 – the highest figure recorded since 2017.

There was a marginal improvement in the brand effectiveness of campaigns in 2021, up from 0.5 to 0.6 brand effects year-on-year.

However, this position has been outweighed by the decline in response effectiveness over the same period, dropping from 2.1 to 1.6 response effects compared with 2020.

The research is based on insights from more than 1,000 DMA awards entries dating back to 2017 that are part of the DMA’s Intelligent Marketing Databank.

The report also highlighted that many marketers are measuring the performance of campaigns without evaluating their true value, often focusing on measuring metrics that are the most accessible rather than those that really matter to their business.

Of the 170 measures used by DMA awards entrants, 41% relate to campaign delivery measures and 59% to business, brand or response effects.

The DMA said this picture has remained stable between 2017 and 2020 and even into 2021, and said this appeared to show there had been no significant progress in reforming how the industry measures campaign impact.

The report called for a more unified approach adopted across the industry, including agreement on the terms used to define effectiveness and a framework to understand the true value of marketing’s success.

Tim Bond, director of insight at the DMA, said: “The Intelligent Marketing Databank revealed in the early phase of the pandemic, after three years of consistent marketing performance, there was a distinct boost in marketing effectiveness.

“However, in the latest pandemic phase this trend has been reversed, with the effectiveness lessons learned in the previous few years seeming to have been lost as volume and spend return to the ad market.”

He added: “Understanding the deficiencies in measurement models and organising campaign measurement, as well as learnings, into coherent organisation-wide measurement frameworks is a crucial step on the path to promoting the role of marketing spend within the business.”