5 key issues marketers need to address as digital marketing matures

November 20, 2014

5 key issues marketers need to address as digital marketing matures

Has your organisation come of age digitally? That’s the question we set out to ask marketers when we launched our Digital Marketing Maturity Assessment on LinkedIn. We know from talking to our customers that the speed at which digital capabilities are evolving leaves plenty of marketers wondering how well they are really doing. Adobe’s Digital Marketing Maturity Assessment was designed to help answer just this question, and in the process, it’s given us a fascinating snapshot of how far marketing has come in its digital journey, as well as the key issues that digital marketers face on the horizon.

The way we structured the assessment reflects what Adobe believes to be the three fundamental elements in digital marketing success: you have to have the right people, the right processes and the right tools or technology. In the assessment, we ask marketers to consider how well these assets serve them in seven key areas of digital activity. We then prompt them to think about the digital channels through which they interact with consumers, how their audiences are defined and targeted, their understanding of customer context, their ability to create appropriate content, the quality of the assets they publish, the campaigns they run and the data they collect.

For our customers, this benchmarking exercise has helped pinpoint how far their digital marketing has transformed compared to their peers (they can compare themselves to ‘laggards’, industry average companies and best-in-class performers). And test results thus far have pointed to five key issues marketers need to address as digital marketing matures:

1. Growing up fast

Most marketing organisations now have a strong grasp of the fundamentals of digital marketing: managing both campaigns and customer data. Many have also made significant strides when it comes to automation and the co-ordination of campaigns across a broad range of online and offline channels. But the most ambitious teams are not yet satisfied with their level of digital maturity—they want to do more.

2. The future of digital marketing is individual

Marketers understand that the closer they get to a 360-degree view of each individual customer, the more opportunities will emerge for them. They know that when they create individual experiences for customers and prospects, their effectiveness leaps forward. A key focus is finding ways to do this more efficiently.

3. Digital experiences should be seamless

Marketers’ audiences increasingly expect experiences that start on one device and move to another as seamlessly as they do. Managing such individualised digital experiences is a key agenda item.

4. Can media optimisation keep up?

It’s no longer a question of how digital budgets compare to offline campaign elements; the challenge for marketers is identifying the impact of different digital media, and the optimum level of spend that should be directed to each.

5. Measuring social is a must

Fewer than half of marketers have tangible evidence that social media is working for them. They are hungry for more, and they need an accessible approach to testing and targeting as well. That’s why Adobe now supports one-click testing of digital campaigns.

I would love to hear from marketers who have taken the assessment—what are your thoughts on how digital marketing is maturing?