More than half of Australian CMOs not equipped to deal with big data onslaught

New research of senior marketers in Australia finds most see the value in improving relationships between marketing and IT as they strive to bring data analytics and insights into their organisations

A new report on Australian chief marketing officers (CMOs) has found most see a closer relationship between marketing and IT to be vital as they grapple with building better big data strategies.

The new The big and small of big data report produced by consultancy Torque Data and Sweeney Research, together with ADMA, found just 10 per cent of senior marketers are using data well and 9 per cent are driving significant results from big data marketing programs.

However, 27 per cent are doing nothing at all with data, and nearly one in 10 marketers dismiss big data as ‘the next big fad’.

Of the 78 per cent of marketers who do believe big data is critical and the 72 per cent who claim to be using big data, the vast majority are focused on reporting, rather than forward-looking insights driving genuine value. According to the report, 42 per cent are using big data initiatives for customer acquisition, 34 per cent for retention. Only one-quarter were looking at the benefits for cross-selling and upselling.

The report also found that there is little correlation between the size of company, marketing or IT budget and the success of big data initiatives. In fact, smaller companies are performing just as well as their larger and better equipped counterparts.

For example, 38 per cent of companies with less than 500 staff are using big data either ‘a lot’ or a ‘fair amount’, compared with 30 per cent of those with more than 500 employees.

Not surprisingly, skills gap emerged as a major barrier, and just over half of all respondents claimed a lack of internal expertise is hindering their data efforts. Sixty-nine per cent of senior marketers cited a real skills shortage, and 72 per cent said big data and marketing analytics experts will be one of the hottest talent areas over the next 12 months.

In addition, 54 per cent of marketing departments admitted they were not equipped to implement programs effectively.

What was encouraging was the realisation that IT departments play a role in improving this situation. Ninety-two per cent of respondents agreed marketing and IT should work more closely when it comes to big data.

Related: CMO-CIO relationship is improving; technology union has a way to go
CIO should be the CMO's best friend: Sephora marketing chief
Why you should bother with the CIO

“Many may be surprised that we have some world-leading, data-based marketing in Australia, but those businesses that are unlocking the secrets are treating it like fight club and not telling anyone,” Torque Data CEO, Oliver Rees, commented.

“Too many Australian marketers are verging on complacency, feeling that since no one really knows what to do they can sit back and wait. The first these marketers will know of their competitors’ capability is when it negatively impacts their own business performance, and by then they’ll be well behind.”

Rees also pointed out many marketers are confusing analytics with a comprehensive data strategy, or are being stymied by poor relationships between marketing and IT.

But Sweeney’s managing director, Erik Heller, was encouraged by those organisations jumping in and having a go. The report also found 82 per cent of Australian marketers expect big data marketing budgets will increase in the next two years.

“While resource constraints certainly shone through, many marketers are not allowing this to hold them back and are adopting quite an experimental approach,” he said. “They are happy to start small, test and learn and not worry too much about this like ROI at this stage. In true Australian spirit, they are simply ‘giving big data a go’.”

The research was based on surveys and interviews with more than 70 senior marketers in Australia, 60 per cent of which worked in organisations with more than 500 employees.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Signup to CMO’s new email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

More Videos

Modernization on marketing to promote products and business is really a big leap especially the age of social media. Thanks for sharing s...

Brayden Manchee

How National Tiles used digital personalisation to deliver 15 per cent of revenue online

Read more

Great write-up. I wrote an article about ASMR as well and the top ASMRtists:https://medium.com/illumina...

Dexx Mason

ASMR: Flash in the marketing pan, or something more?

Read more

Nice to be visiting your blog once more, it has been months for me. best mp3 converter

Yolanda R. Skillman

Melbourne Fashion Week: Using digital and insight to drive engagement and attendance

Read more

Typically I visit your web journals and get refreshed through the data you incorporate yet the present blog would be the most obvious bes...

Yolanda R. Skillman

What automated design is going to do to 3D printing and product customisation

Read more

I am overpowered by your post with such a decent theme. best mp3 converter

Yolanda R. Skillman

Report: Accountability key to marketing's influence in business

Read more

Blog Posts

Why direct response advertising is winning this year

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, brands around the globe are going into hibernation and waiting out the ongoing storm. CMOs have dramatically slashed their budgets across every single form of media, digital included.

Sabri Suby

Founder, King Kong

Taking back control of your tech

To win in customer experience, brands need to take back control of their technology.

Michael Titshall

VP, managing director, R/GA Australia

Brands with internal customer insights capability will survive and even thrive

According to The Australian Bureau of Statistics, two-thirds of Australian businesses across all sectors have reported taking a hit to revenue or cash flow due to COVID-19. About one in 10 said they have paused trading altogether. In 70 per cent of cases, this was due to COVID-19.

Pip Stocks

CEO of BrandHook and founder of Hearsay

Sign in