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Managing customer journeys is CMO’s “top challenge”

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19th Jul 2015
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Aberdeen Group’s latest research into the psyche of the modern-day CMO reveals a growing concern from leading marketers  about how to effectively manage customer journeys.

The report, ‘The CMO Dilemma: Bridging the Gap between Love and Money’ surveyed over 200 senior marketers to find that 96% of CMOs were unsatisfied with their data quality when designing marketing programmes to orchestrate buyer journeys.  

55% of leading marketers believe improving customer journeys is their biggest challenge, not only as a result of poor data, but due to rapidly changing consumer habits and their channel preferences – two aspects proving difficult to stay on top of.

Respondents also cited the “wealth of information” customers have about them and their customers as changing the dynamic of buyer journeys, and making it harder to know what knowledge new customers, in particular, have on their brand at first point of communication.

The upshot is that 84% of global and 88% of UK marketers plan to increase or maintain their marketing budgets for 2015, according to a Salesforce State of Marketing report earlier in the year, to account for more spend on customer journeys and journey mapping.

The benefits of improved understanding of both customer data and their buying journeys is, according to Aberdeen Group’s research, a 54% greater annual improvement in the return on marketing investment (ROMI) metric. These marketers also increase revenue from customer referrals by more than 300%.

"Overcoming this challenge and understand where, when, and how the current customer conversations evolve should be a key focus for marketing leaders," the CMO report author and research director for Aberdeen Group, Omer Minkara, states.

"Indeed, those who mitigate this challenge by better utilising historical data and real-time data are well positioned to guide marketing programs to identify and address evolving buyer needs. This helps them satisfy the customers as well as drive positive financial results through happy customers, hence meet the expectations of the shareholders.”

The other key concern highlighted in the research was the increasing pressure CMOs were experiencing from their executive boards to deliver return on investment (ROI), which a large proportion of marketers felt was at odds with their increasing need to focus on customer retention and loyalty.    

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