While the Mayweather-Pacquiao clash may have been dubbed the fight of the century, a former sports marketer and now CMO Council bigwig reckons many marketers have a bigger stoush in front of them if they’re to survive.
Speaking to B&T prior to the release of new research from Adobe and the CMO Council yesterday, Liz Miller said that marketers had to fight the rest of the c-suite and train them “to refrain from asking questions like should we sponsor a golf tournament?”
Miller, senior vice president, marketing CMO Council, says marketing has a legacy of being seen as “the colouring in department”, while it ought to be the leader of strategy and generating a customer-centric approach to business.
She says of her own experience, which spans 22 years and started in sports marketing most notably professional boxing. “I learnt about customer experience before customer experience was cool,” she said.
Miller believes when you’re charging someone $1000 for a ringside seat at a fight, if you’re not thinking about the full customer experience, “then they will; think you’re just skinning them for $1000”.
That means you might need to think “my customers like cool music so I’m going to make sure there’s a great jazz band playing”, or you might need to think “my customers like pretty girls in bikinis”, so I’m going to make sure there’s plenty of cheerleaders at the fight, explains Miller.
Miller now oversees all marketing, research and program operations at the CMO Council, serving as the lead analyst for all research initiatives and reports.
The APAC Digital Directions report, a deep-dive into strategies, mandates and challenges and a companion piece to the CMO Council and Adobe’s ongoing Digital Marketing Performance Dashboard, reveals findings based on data collected from 648 respondents in Australia, South Korea, China, Hong Kong, Singapore and India.
Some of the key findings included:
• Digital is critical. Ninety-three per cent of marketers surveyed believe that digital engagements will drive competitive advantage for their brands.
• Management is embracing digital. Sixty per cent say they have strong senior management support, including a receptivity to piloting and testing more digital engagements.
• Data, insights and analytics are becoming core competencies for leaders. Three out of four marketers are currently using some form of analytics and reporting technologies while 70 per cent are actively measuring outcomes and performance.
• Data is not an advantage…yet. Only seven per cent of marketers see data as a competitive advantage for their brands. The majority — 37 per cent — are only using data as a way to report on past performance instead of looking forward.
• The skills gap is not closing quickly enough. Marketers are questioning whether they have the right skills in place, both in-house and with their agency partners.
• Marketers have questions…management has doubts: For the first year, the 2014 dashboard showed a slight dip in marketing mindset, the score that tallies marketing’s belief that digital is a more effective engagement channel driven by customer desire and its ability to deliver a competitive advantage. Marketers are questioning digital’s ability to reach and engage customers just as a crisis in measuring value to the business heightens. Even in regions like Australia, only 32 per cent believe that their ability to report on digital’s value to the business and actual engagement with customers is excellent. In lagging markets like China, only nine per cent give themselves top marks in making a business case.