In 2020, World Federation of Advertisers surveyed leading marketers from over 30 countries in a bid to uncover what the biggest challenges were for marketers of today; how skill gaps can be bridged; and what CMOs need to be conscious of in order to succeed moving forward. The findings can be grouped in three core categories:

Economic Pressures – Doing more with less

Technological Demands – Staying up to speed via digital transformation

High Consumer Expectation – Keeping up with changing consumer habits and demands

For the survey respondents, these were considered to be the toughest hurdles they currently face. These challenges are exacerbated by the fact that, as a result of extraordinary events of this year, the role of the CMO is in a transformational stage.

As marketing becomes increasingly data-driven and technology focused, the CMO – along with their marketing team – must assume more collaborative and cross-functional capabilities in order to realise the full potential of their brand.

There’s no denying that to achieve bigger impact with less resources is a challenge. But it’s not impossible.

With marketing now increasingly accountable for demonstrating the results in a credible, quantifiable fashion, to achieve success in today’s arena marketing teams must harness the power of hard data.

Here’s how:

Get your analytics in a row

First things first – you need the right tools in place to collect your data.

For many marketers, their analytics live in silos, which makes analysing data and metrics across channels a challenge.

You need all your data connected to your customer relationship management (CRM) system. If it’s not, you’ll miss out on some critical analytics that can report on the ROI of each marketing channel, and your marketing plan as a whole.

Data-driven marketing

When it comes to data, you need to have it all connected to your customer relationship management (CRM) system so it’s organised and easy to access

Set data benchmarks

What are your company’s typical email click-through rates?

How many “likes” do you generally get on an individual social media post?

What is your average conversion rate?

It might seem simple but understanding ‘marketing norms’ can help you quickly track the success of your efforts or tell you whether you need to improve your marketing game.

But how can you determine what’s “good” to begin with?

Try approaching it in one of these ways:

  1. Do some research to see if there are any established industry marketing benchmarks out there to compare yourself to. This can give you a general sense of how others in the industry are faring, and how you stack up in comparison.
  2. Establish benchmarks that are specific to your own business and industry. (This is where your analytics come into play.)
  3. After a few months of tracking, you should start to notice general patterns in the performance of your individual marketing metrics.

Remember, make it a priority to improve your benchmarks over time.

Assign team members specific metrics

Once you have a reliable, integrated, and all-encompassing analytics tool in place, use it for all its worth. Measure everything; there’s no shortage of metrics you can track.

To optimise the measurement work, identify the key metrics you’ll use to measure the success of each channel and prioritise them by importance.

Then assign the tracking and managing of these metrics to individual team members.

This will not only ensure you have all your important metrics covered, but it will also hold your team accountable for regularly keeping track of and reporting them.

With a reliable analytics tool in place, use it for all its worth. Measure everything; there’s no shortage of metrics you can track

Data-driven marketing

Track metric-driven goals

As well as tracking metrics, each team member should be assigned specific goals to achieve. These goals should be based on your overarching business goals.

If your company wants to grow revenue by 10% in revenue in Q2, you’ll need to work out how many leads you need to generate in order to close 10% more customers or revenue. You can then start to assign individual team goals based on those marketing channels’ benchmarks. In other words, if you know that your social media marketing typically contributes 15% of your business’ overall new leads and your blog contributes 5%, you’d assign a larger overall leads goal for your social media marketing team than you would your blogging team.

Use your data

If we think back to the three core challenges facing CMO’s today – economic pressures, technological demands, high consumer expectations – data provides a perfect opportunity to drive your marketing decisions and achieve more with less.

In other words, now you’ve got the data, use it.

Tracking your analytics will give you a clearer indication as to what’s working and what isn’t. Perhaps you’re pumping 80% of your time and money into Instagram marketing when, in fact, the ROI of Facebook is three times lower. Based on this data, you would adjust your marketing focus to Facebook.

Find ways to measure the unmeasurable

Some things are easier to measure than others. Measuring leads from a social media marketing campaign is much easier – and more straightforward – than, say, measuring the success of your company’s new branding.

The trick is to find imaginative ways of attaining data from those seemingly unquantifiable efforts.

For example, if you wanted to measure the success of your new branding, you might look at direct traffic to your website or how many searches there’ve been for branded content.

When it comes to data-driven marketing, nothing is outright unmeasurable.

Shape your content around data

So, you’ve got your data, you’ve using it to improve your marketing strategy and you’re starting to see improvements in your goal conversions. Success!

But don’t stop there.

Maximise your data by using it across your company’s content output. Blog posts are considered more credible, authoritative and trustworthy when they include relevant data, and high-level stats presented in an eye-catching infographic is more likely to be downloaded, shared and opened multiple times.

But remember to keep your stats up to date – there’s nothing worse than stumbling across a point-proving but five-year out-of-date statistic!

The must-have mindset for 2021

With data-driven marketing the must-have mindset for 2021, now is the time to power your data and get the most from your marketing efforts. Technological advances and budget cuts mean CMO’s are under pressure to achieve more with less while meeting the increasing demands and expectations of the modern-day consumer. By getting to grips with your data, and extracting the most value out of it, you can take your digital marketing efforts to the next level – just in time for the new year.

It's time to strengthen your data-driven marketing team


With these top tips, you can maximise your data and enhance your digital marketing strategy quickly, efficiently and with very little cost. But there’s plenty more you could do to engage your prospects and generate pipeline. If you’re looking to enhance your network and unlock new business opportunities, our digital marketing team is ready to help. Contact our friendly team today for more information.