Data and Analytics to Remain Challenging for Marketers in 2018

As marketers look ahead to 2018, they are still struggling to justify their investment in data analytics and technology, according to recent research.

The “Communications and Marketing Survey 2017/18” from Cognito Communications found that within the next 12 months, securing budget/investment (89 percent) is the top challenge for marketers in terms of analytics and technology. This is followed by adaption to disruption (87 percent) and adaption to technology (84 percent).

However, 79 percent still believe that data analytics will be the technological development with the highest impact over the next year. This is followed by marketing automation (57 percent).

“Much like other industries, marketing and communications is anticipating the potential impact of digital disruption, technology and automation,” said Tom Coombes, CEO and founder of Cognito. “Adaption to this change relies on turning perceived challenges into opportunities for success.”

In terms of budgeting in the New Year, about 61 percent of marketers intend to invest more in content creation, while 31 percent expect to invest at least the same amount as before. Approximately 57 percent intend to dedicate more of their budget toward SEO, SEM and email.

The authors of the report considered content creation, digital marketing and social media to be the biggest “winners” in terms of activities gaining budget headed into 2018.

Utilizing Marketing Data to Yield ROI

Previous research discovered that although marketers have an invested interest in analytics, they face a number of challenges in terms of gaining insights through their data.

The “Customer Experience Dynamics” report from The CMO Council discovered that just 39 percent of marketing leaders have “total access” to a comprehensive view of their target customer, based on insights aggregated from across their company.

Approximately 38 percent claim their data is “limited” to their own functional silos, and it is not accessed in real time. This is because marketers often need assistance from other groups and IT in order to tap into their data, which can be costly and time-consuming.

About 20 percent of marketers believe they need more actionable insights from their data in order to improve the customer experience.

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