A survey of senior marketers has revealed that the over whelming majority (96%) find improving data analysis processes a significant challenge. This is despite devoting an average of five hours and 36 minutes a week to the cause.
A Data Dilemma study of 151 UK senior marketers in August last year, also found that 80% believe they need to make significant inroads with data analytics and tools within the next two years to avoid falling behind competitors or losing out financially. This study was commissioned by Callcredit Information Group.
Steve McNicholas, Managing Director, Marketing Solutions, Callcredit Information Group, commented: “While marketers are prioritising the management of data, there is an overriding feeling that it should be delivering better business outcomes for them. At the same time, they know there’s a wealth of untapped opportunity to use data to extract more value but a lack of resource, and in some cases, expertise, is preventing them from unleashing it.
“The urgency to improve data analytics processes can be hard to reconcile given the high number of other priorities marketers are required to juggle on a daily basis. As a result, some are turning to off-the-shelf software packages, such as Excel, to keep things ticking along. The danger is that the early-movers, who have already invested in more robust data strategies, will over-take. Marketers must decide whether this is a price they are willing to pay.”
So what is it that gets in the way of improving data analysis? The causes were noted as a lack of budget (35%), time-to-value expectations (32%), a lack of human resources (31%) and underperforming data quality tools (30%). This wasn’t all and there were a number of other circumstances hindering progress such as imperfect data; with only 36% stating that they are extremely satisfied with the data they have access to.
71% meanwhile said that they feel overwhelmed rather than empowered by the data available, with 69% saying that they feel such data has distracted them from core marketing duties. Only a third said that they see themselves as ‘extremely effective’ at using the data available to understand their customers’ needs.
In response to these challenges, marketers are investing in data tools in an attempt to improve the status quo. 73% make use of web analytics and tracking tools and 67% utilise Excel and modelling packages to meet their goals.