According to a Gartner report, marketing analytics influence slightly over half (53%) of marketing decisions. Gartner polled 377 marketing analytics customers in May and June 2022 to investigate the role of marketing analytics in decision making. “CMOs frequently feel that accomplishing marketing data integration goals will lead to greater influence and higher value of marketing analytics,” said Joseph Enever, senior director analyst in the Gartner Marketing group.
Better data alone will not boost marketing analytics’ decision influence. Cognitive biases and the requirement for a data-informed culture are serious problems for CMOs.” According to the survey, the number of marketing decisions influenced by analytics matters: organizations who report marketing analytics influence fewer than 50% of decisions are more likely to agree that they are unable to establish the value of marketing. Once marketing analytics teams cross that 50% milestone, there are likely to be diminishing benefits to trying to influence more decisions.
“By 2023, Gartner forecasts 60% of CMOs will cut their marketing analytics department in half due to failed promised benefits,” Enever stated. The following are the top barriers to the influence of marketing analytics: Problems with Data Quality and Cognitive Biases
Consumers of marketing analytics continue to cite issues with evergreen data maintenance as the primary reason analytics are not used when making decisions. In this year’s poll, the difficulties of “data consistency across sources” and “data accessibility” surged to the top. Marketing organizations frequently respond to these difficulties by integrating additional data or adopting different technology, assuming that this is a one-size-fits-all strategy to marketing data management – but they fail to see tangible results on important outcomes. When chasing a 360-degree view of the consumer, for example, marketers see diminishing marginal returns on data integration.
Barriers to using marketing analytics in decision making are often caused by people and/or process issues rather than data integration challenges particular to marketing. Key cognitive biases, for example, lie at the basis of the marketing analytics influence plateau. One-third of respondents said decision makers cherry-pick evidence to present a tale that supports their prior choice or attitude. Furthermore, almost a quarter of respondents stated that decision makers do not review the material provided by the marketing analytics team (26%), reject their suggestions (24%), or make their final decision (24%).
CMOs must address these challenges by:
Tracking analytics-based decisions to provide a current state of view and places for improvement. Identify examples of marketing analytics work that resulted in actionable marketing campaign or program recommendations. Marketing executives should urge their teams to search for trends in decision-making patterns and to document the types of decisions they influence.
Fighting cherry-picking. Set KPIs and measurements before initiating a new campaign or marketing strategy, not after the data has begun to flow.
Senior leaders are encouraged to provide a good example. Avoid being a HiPPO (Highest Paid Person’s Opinion) by allowing data to inform or amend your decisions.