Mark Phibbs, Senior Direc­tor Mar­ket­ing and Global Chan­nel Mar­ket­ing, Adobe APAC – LinkedIn@MarkPhibbs

Won­der­ing if your dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing efforts are match­ing up to that of the region? Spec­u­lat­ing how you bench­mark against your com­peti­tors?  The APAC Dig­i­tal Mar­ket­ing Per­for­mance Dash­board 2012 was launched today by the CMO Coun­cil in part­ner­ship with Adobe, mea­sur­ing the state of dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing per­for­mance and matu­rity across APAC. A six-month in-field pro­gram com­pris­ing quan­ti­ta­tive and qual­i­ta­tive sur­veys, this inau­gural study bench­marked the lev­els of adop­tion, trac­tion and suc­cess of dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing in Aus­tralia, China, Korea, Sin­ga­pore, Hong Kong and India. 295 senior mar­keters from a range of indus­tries took part. Now you can gauge your per­for­mance against the rest and get a bet­ter under­stand­ing of dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing in the region!

Sev­eral keys points from the report stood out:

  • Dig­i­tal mar­keters in APAC have high lev­els of opti­mism and con­fi­dence in the ben­e­fits that dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing can bring to their business.

–         93% of respon­dents believed that dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing could cre­ate com­pet­i­tive advan­tage for their company

–         52% felt that dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing was cru­cial in help­ing them form a customer-centric, respon­sive organization

–         51% felt that dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing helped boosts the effec­tive­ness and effi­ciency of their over­all mar­ket­ing programme

–         63% claimed that cus­tomer pref­er­ences were dri­ving the move to dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing activities

  • The great­est obsta­cle fac­ing APAC mar­keters is the low invest­ment lev­els ded­i­cated to dig­i­tal marketing.

–         53% of respon­dents cited bud­get lim­i­ta­tions as a sig­nif­i­cant fac­tor pre­vent­ing them from under­tak­ing crit­i­cal activ­i­ties such as test­ing and analysis

–         72% are spend­ing less than 25% of their total mar­ket­ing bud­get on dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing initiative

–         Of that group, 37% are spend­ing even less than 10%

  • In spite of the cur­rent low spend, APAC mar­keters expect to increase invest­ment in 2013.

–         47% of respon­dents said they would increase allo­ca­tion to dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing to between 10–24% of their total mar­ket­ing budget

–         22% said they would increase spend to 25–49%


Skill short­age appears to be a sig­nif­i­cant issue across APAC.
– About 49% of respon­dents said their cur­rent mar­ket­ing teams didn’t have the right skills, expe­ri­ence or tal­ent needed to take on dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing strategy

– 38% said they had insuf­fi­cient bud­get to bring on the right level of senior talent

– 27% admit­ted that they were unable to find the right staff with the right skills

– 32% acknowl­edge that out­sourc­ing is not the solu­tion by say­ing their agen­cies’ capa­bil­i­ties were lim­it­ing their abil­ity to exe­cute effectively

Although a major­ity of organ­i­sa­tions in APAC are using ana­lyt­ics and report­ing tech­nolo­gies, they are still find­ing chal­lenges in mea­sur­ing return on invest­ment.
– 72% of respon­dents are using ana­lyt­ics and report­ing tech­nolo­gies. How­ever, of those, only 3% feel they are excelling in their abil­ity to mea­sure value and return.

What does all this mean for dig­i­tal mar­keters in APAC? It stems down to two main mean­ings. Firstly, mar­keters are using report­ing and ana­lytic tech­nolo­gies but strug­gling to move beyond basic KPIs. This can be seen in the data where although 72% of respon­dents are using report­ing and ana­lytic tech­nolo­gies, only 19% of those rate their abil­ity to mea­sure ROI as excel­lent or very good. Sec­ondly, the lack of ded­i­cated resources will con­tinue to make it dif­fi­cult to demon­strate ROI and develop a strate­gic approach. The report shows that 74% of respon­dents rate their cur­rent pro­fi­ciency in deliv­er­ing a go-to-market dig­i­tal model as mod­er­ate or need­ing improve­ment. A stag­ger­ing 49% say lack of in-house dig­i­tal exper­tise is their great­est chal­lenge while 72% are using mul­ti­ple dig­i­tal agen­cies. Both the chal­lenge to move beyond basic KPIs and the lack of ded­i­cated resources affect the abil­ity to mea­sure ROI effec­tively which in turn leads to the inabil­ity to increase bud­get with the lack of proof.

So then, what are the next steps? There are sev­eral rec­om­men­da­tions that you can start work­ing on to get improve your dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing efforts:

1) Appoint senior dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing lead­ers to own the mar­ket­ing strat­egy align­ment to key busi­ness drivers.

2) Make sure your orga­ni­za­tion is mea­sur­ing the right ele­ments in order to demon­strate ROI

3) Boost in-house ded­i­cated, skilled ana­lyt­ics resources to drive the shift from tac­ti­cal KPI mea­sure­ment to prove ROI and lever­age data for ana­lytic insights

4) Con­tinue invest­ment in mea­sure­ment and opti­miza­tion tech­nolo­gies as well as ongo­ing staff train­ing – up skill your in-house staff today!

To down­load and read the full report click here

To view the APAC Dig­i­tal Mar­ket­ing Per­for­mance Dash­board Info­graphic click here

To view the APAC Dig­i­tal Mar­ket­ing Per­for­mance Dash­board ROI Mea­sures Info­graphic click here