Online Advertising Purchasers: CMOs Focus on Customer Journeys

57% of CMOs expect marketing budgets to increase during the next 2–3 years. Chief marketing officers and top marketing executives are shifting budgets toward customer retention and advocacy, according to research from The CMO Club. Conducted in collaboration with IBM, the study also shows that CMOs are increasing their budgets and allocating a greater portion of these investments across the entire customer journey rather than individual channels.

The study titled, "Marketing is a (Buyer) Journey, Not a Destination," features feedback from 100 leading CMO Club members which includes CMOs and heads of marketing, all with budgets of $1 million and above.

The study also features the perspectives on the findings of eight marketing executives from companies including Wells Fargo, Bally, Ticketmaster, Valspar, CNO Financial, medCPU and Goddard School.

According to a study from Foundation Capital, technology spend by CMOs will increase 10x in 10 years, growing from $12 billion to $120 billion. With this latest study, marketers are showing that with budgets on the rise, how they plan to allocate this money is changing.

This shift comes at a time when consumers have begun engaging businesses from multiple channels; they are researching products on their mobile device, purchasing from their tablet and then picking up in the store.

As this customer journey becomes more common, CMOs can no longer afford to dedicate a majority of their budget to customer acquisition and allocate market spend by channel. According to this survey, marketers have recognized the need and are beginning to shift priorities toward retention and loyalty and driving customer advocacy across each interaction point, beginning with discovery.

Key findings from CMOs Shift Investments Toward the Customer Journey, According to The CMO Club and IBM Study include:

  • 57% of CMOs expect their marketing budgets to increase during the next 2–3 years
  • Marketers are aligning spending across every stage of the buyer journey with social and digital channels emerging as top areas of investment
  • 53% of respondents stated that the main reason for spreading their budgets across the entire customer journey is the need to generate higher revenue

"The brand/​customer dynamic is no longer built on insolated interactions. It's an ongoing relationship that must span all touch points in the customer's journey," said Deepak Advani, General Manager, IBM Commerce.

The shifting dynamic and the changing role of the CMO also illuminates a tremendous opportunity for CMOs to further expand their influence, cut through organizational silos, and make an impact beyond just marketing by owning the overall customer experience.

Additional study findings include:

  • Marketers stated that content generation is their biggest expenditure, accounting for 13% of their budgets. This focus demonstrates the vital role content plays in engaging today's consumer in an ongoing dialogue.
  • While there is strong momentum toward digital marketing capabilities, traditional marketing channels still play a role in the marketing mix.

According to the study, traditional marketing still accounts for 52% of their budgets. Chris Campbell, CMO of CNO Financial, notes that, "It is a migration; not all (of your tactics) should be digital. TV, radio, (and) print all still matter, but digital is rising at a rapid rate."

"We're excited about what this study reveals. Marketing dollars are in a seismic shift from channel to journey with feedback metrics that allow for rapid experimentation across campaigns and tactics," said Pete Krainik, CEO and Founder of The CMO Club. "The domino effect of this change ripples through marketing campaigns, customer service, agency offerings, marketing approaches, marketing investments and metrics. It is one of the first and most compelling data points that showcase the change in marketing behavior mapping to the changing role and power of the consumer."

Keep these comments in mind when you're asking decision makers for part of their budgets. According to AudienceSCAN, 6.5% of adults intend to purchase or approve online advertising in the next 12 months for their companies. 47% of them are using Android devices. Online Advertising Purchasers are 96% more likely than average consumers to read blogs every day, so try getting to them there. You might catch 'em on LinkedIn too: 48.5% have been active there in the past month. They listen to experts, so start acting like one! 35% took action based on a reference by an industry expert.

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the Audience Intelligence Reports inåÊAdMall.

Courtney Huckabay
Courtney is the Editor for SalesFuel Today. She analyzes secondary customer research and our primary AudienceSCAN research. Courtney is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.