Alterian's 8th annual survey of 1,500 marketers, agencies, marketing service providers and systems integrators from around the world finds that less than one-third of them have a strong understanding of the conversations happening around their brand. Just 30% said they are "reporting regularly to management" while a 30% said "very little" or "none".
But most of those surveyed plan on increasing expenditures on social/digital marketing. In fact, just 4% of respondents said that budgets would decrease, while 75% said they will increase at least slightly.
With most social media and digital campaigns, the buzzword is "engagement". Yet, despite plans to increase budgets in this area, few businesses are actually focused on engaging consumers with their websites. The survey found that just 11% "personalize each visitor experience on the website" while a stunning 34% claim "The website's main focus is to serve as a corporate brochure" - ala 1999. Some 55% say their focus is "campaigns and offers to drive interaction on the website."
Email, on the other hand, seems to be the prevailing method of personalization. Almost three-quarters of respondents (72%) focus on creating a personalized customer experience through email. More than half of respondents (56%) at least segment audiences with different email messages. The second-most popular form of personalization is direct mail (58%), followed by the website (56%). Surprisingly, social media ranks fourth in personalization efforts with 53%. This, despite planned budget increases and a very low barrier to entry.
Of those surveyed, 77% said that their client's brand is at least somewhat at risk from not being as engaged with customers as it should be.
Read the full report here.