CMO Council's Marketing Outlook Reveals Budgets Holding Up
• Customer anxiety and cutbacks are the number one force impacting budget allocations in 2009, followed by slower selling cycles and reduced consumer spending. Only 14.9 percent point to financial market disarray as a determining factor.
• Retraining and developing existing staff is the leading strategy for acquiring or sharpening expertise in digital marketing competencies, with 62.9 percent of respondents electing training over recruiting new talent (28.6 percent) or outsourcing (17.1 percent).
• When it comes to investments in marketing automation, tactical capabilities and point solutions dominate. The top two target areas of investment for 2009 are email marketing (44.9 percent) and online surveys and research (33.2 percent). Only 10.1 percent are investing in master data, 12.8 percent in marketing operational systems, and 9.3 percent in marketing resource or process management solutions.
• Grow or retain market share is the leading executive mandate for marketers, which 47.6 percent, followed by lowering costs and improving go-to-market efficiencies (43.5 percent) and improving customer insight and retention (32.5 percent).
• Only 8.2 percent respondents plan to build new linkages with line of business executives and just 7.4 percent are seeking a board member position, suggesting limited aspirations to rise within the corporate hierarchy.
Online media and digital channels of engagement are taking center stage like never before according to marketers, who are universally looking to enhance talent, expand competencies and sharpen measures and metrics for performance.
“This year’s survey shows increased spending in online and digital at the expense of traditional media budgets will continue in 2009. Digital marketing metrics such as page views and click through rates give at least the perception of accountability, making online marketing increasingly attractive as the industry focuses on performance measurement,” said C. Lee Smith, president and CEO of Ad-ology. "Our recent consumer research shows online and emerging media's influence on customers’ buying decisions now rivals that of traditional media, which corresponds with this shift," Smith said.