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DialogTech Survey Finds 4 Out of 5 Marketing Executives Expect Measurable Campaigns, Yet Only 29 Percent Can Deliver

CHICAGO, IL – December 5, 2011DialogTech®, the leader in voice-based marketing automation, today announced the findings of its 2011 State of Marketing Measurement Report. The survey data reveals a large gap between executive demands and ability to demonstrate return on marketing investment. While four out of five marketing executives say they are expected to deliver measurable results, only 29% cite they can effectively achieve this across all channels.

The ease of tracking online metrics, coupled with the lagging economy, has driven the expectation that every marketing dollar needs to be accounted for, explained Irv Shapiro, CEO of DialogTech. Yet, 82% of ad spend still resides in offline channels that can be difficult to measure. The industry needs to evolve to help marketers track their investments in these areas.

However, expectations of marketing measurement varied across marketing roles, as well as company size. While the vast majority (87%) of Chief Marketing Officers ‘strongly agree’ or ‘agree’ that every campaign should be measured, more than a quarter of Marketing Assistants reported that they don’t think marketing measurement is important.

It’s concerning to hear that many of the future marketers of tomorrow don’t understand the importance of measuring the success of their campaigns, said Shapiro. We need to determine the root cause behind this sentiment, and whether it’s a lack of education in best practices, or rather a gap in leadership and mentoring. Businesses can only get better at marketing if they are held accountable for improving upon what didn’t work in the past.

Marketing measurement expectations also varied based on company size in a bell curve, with midsized companies most concerned about measurement:

  • Under 100 employees: 79% felt all campaigns should be measured
  • 100-500 employees: 93% felt all campaigns should be measured
  • 500-5,000 employees: 86% felt all campaigns should be measured
  • 5,000+ employees: 79% felt all campaigns should be measured

We suspect the cause of the bell curve is two-fold, Shapiro said. On the low end, smaller companies lack the knowledge and human capital to effectively track all of their initiatives. On the high end, larger companies are more likely to spend dollars on brand campaigns and goodwill efforts they know will be difficult to measure. Both those factors lead to lowered expectations in those organizations.

Offline Marketing Campaigns Prove Most Difficult to Track

When asked to choose the most difficult type of campaign to measure, more than half of marketers chose offline channels. Thirty-three percent cited public relations and 27% print advertisements as the most difficult to track, while only 6% selected email marketing.

Tracking ROI was difficult across the board. Study participants were asked, Can you effectively measure the ROI of the following programs? In each case, the majority of marketers indicated they could not effectively measure the ROI of their programs. Eighty-two percent of marketers could not measure the ROI of public relations, while 53% of the group reported difficulty measuring the ROI of email marketing.

Programs where it’s most difficult to measure ROI:

  • Public Relations (82%)
  • SEO (76%)
  • Social media (74%)
  • Tradeshow Marketing (72%)
  • Print campaigns (66%)
  • Online ads (60%)
  • Direct mail campaigns (59%)
  • Email marketing (53%)

The ability to track ROI could potentially be tied to a lack of widespread use of available marketing tools, according to Shapiro. The survey indicated the most-used tools include web analytics (48%), email marketing software analytics (47%), lead counts from online contact forms (38%), social media monitoring (30%) and call tracking (27%).

Marketers who expect to demonstrate measurable ROI on their campaigns need to leverage the analytical tools available to them, explained Shapiro. It is refreshing to see both social media monitoring and voice-based marketing automation, in the form of call tracking, begin to gain traction. Both are relatively new to the space but in the future will be indispensable. Social media monitoring is an entirely new marketing channel, and voice-based marketing automation is a new way to finally measure traditional offline channels.

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