By Rebecca Jackson.
Digital marketing has been with us for well over 30 years so it came as something of a surprise to me to see some of the results of a recent poll** we conducted among more than 170 senior marketers in Australia about how they use (or don’t use!) digital marketing.
In particular, the poll identified an apparent and widespread lack of ability among companies to integrate data sources (online, offline and social media) and use them to get insights about customers, insights which in turn can drive effective decision making around brand marketing.
In other words, companies have had relatively easy access to this type of customer data for many years, but are still not taking advantage of it.
It’s disconcerting to think that 15 years ago I was sitting in a lecture room discussing Nicholas Negroponte’s thoughts on the “radically new culture” emerging at the intersection of “computer graphics, human communications, and interactive multimedia”. I recall being very bright eyed and bushy tailed about this – excited by the thought that our whole relationship to information, customers and the media was undergoing a dramatic change.
While Mark Zuckerberg was starting out at high school, Negroponte was already challenging us to think that the value of the internet is less about information and more about community “Many of the values of a nation-state will give way to those of both larger and smaller electronic communities. We will socialise in digital neighbourhoods in which physical space will be irrelevant and time will play a different role,” Negroponte wrote in Being Digital.
My point is that digital data is not new, and yet in this era of electronic communities, it’s still not being exploited to anywhere near its full potential.
For some of us we have only known change, change driven by technology and data. From my first marketing role to today, my landscape has never remained stagnant. I have never experienced a time where technology and the internet were not key drivers in the delivery of integrated marketing strategies and activities that drive customer engagement.
As a result I was surprised that Acxiom’s Marketing Technology Adoption report also found that approximately 40 per cent of Australian organisation’s surveyed were not using email marketing or websites and an even larger proportion (59 – 76 per cent) were not utilising the ‘Big Three’ social media properties of Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to connect with customers.
Given that the majority of respondents were from medium to large size organisations, the report suggests that marketers are yet to fully comprehend just what digital marketing can do for their business.
Interested to hear your thoughts?
Posted by Rebecca Jackson, Acxiom
**Connecting the Dots is Acxiom’s report on marketing technology adoption in Australia