Marketing and technology is a monumental muddle says new Wunderman Thompson survey

Surveys always seem to tell you what you think you know already, which is why we ignore most of them. Here’s another from Wunderman Thompson summarising what a tangle companies get into as they try to combine marketing with IT/technology, no surprise but the extent of the carnage seems worth noting.

WT’s Building Better Experiences report says:

Four out of 10 (41%) of brands report that they still lack the data they need to effectively drive personalised content to their customers

There is friction between IT and marketing decision-makers when it comes to the management of content, with 84% of marketing decision-makers wishing IT understood their needs better and 81% of IT decision-makers feeling the same about their marketing counterparts (ie nearly all of them.)

McKinsey

39% of all decision-makers point to the diverse and siloed nature of asset management systems as the top pain point in building customer experiences and 35% are most concerned about having multiple copies of the same content in different locations.

Furthermore, 71% of marketing decision-makers and 60% of IT decision makers agree that their department can be a bottleneck when it comes to delivering an optimal customer experience.

Makes you wonder why they bother. But help is at hand – technology according to WT (thought that was the problem.) It says: “digital asset management systems have the potential to deliver new capabilities via artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning that help to relieve the pressure of manual tasks and approval processes.

“56% of businesses are currently using AI or machine learning to manage content and assets, with regulatory compliance, content recommendations and asset renditions being the top use cases. However, the research reveals that marketing teams are struggling to make the most of the technology at hand.”

And, of course, WT, with its 4,000 technologists, is there to help.

Steve Stathis Tzikaki, CEO of software specialist Sitecore, says: “Consumer expectations skyrocketed over the past year, questioning brands’ digital experience capabilities. In response, many are finding that they need to make changes to streamline creativity, content, and collaboration. Strategic investments in agencies and headless technology can help organisations rise to the challenge with content-led personalisation at scale.

“Brands that get these fundamentals right will be well-positioned in a cookieless, privacy-first future where content takes on increased importance – particularly as fuel for expanding first-party customer data relationships.”

Doubtless they will. Although after years of trying they don’t seem to be getting very far.

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About Stephen Foster

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Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.