Blog Post:At a roundtable discussion earlier this week, hosted by Kristin Brewe from the IAB and attended by industry experts, we explored new research* into what’s keeping 500 senior UK marketers awake at night. It revealed marketers are suffering from a “digital disconnect” with less than 10 percent of senior UK marketers having full confidence in their own digital marketing skills [8%] or those of their teams [9%]. In addition, over 50 percent of marketers in the UK are not testing campaigns or content, relying instead on instinct. This echoes research recently carried out in the US where just 9 percent of marketers are fully confident that their digital marketing is working, while 61 percent believe that for most companies, digital marketing approaches are a constant cycle of trial and error. The problems in the UK are heightened by the fact that two thirds of marketing departments do not have a developed data analysis and insight strategy and so there is a lack of information as well as experience. The consensus at the roundtable was that the first step for marketers has to be to make digital a more central focus in their marketing strategy. They need to concentrate on the channels that will help them achieve their business goals. I believe that at the moment many marketers don’t quite know what is working and don’t feel they have the necessary skills or experiences to succeed in the digital environment. They are finding it tough to stay up to date in such a rapidly changing industry and aren’t getting support or training. Our research showed that less than 3 percent of respondents received formal training. This is worrying, as despite not having full confidence in their teams, 51 percent of marketers rely on colleagues to keep up with the pace of digital marketing trends. The lack of confidence is leading to key channels being overlooked and undervalued. Surprisingly, almost half of marketers admit to not having a mobile strategy in place, despite smartphone ownership reaching over two-thirds (68%)** of the UK population in June 2013 and mobile now accounting for 14** percent of all digital advertising spend. And only 27** percent of marketers are marketing at all through mobile channels. Although marketers may not have full confidence in their skills or knowledge, most recognise just how big an opportunity there is in digital. For me, it is those who have the knowledge and insight and who are training their teams to be more 'digital-ready' who will be in the strongest position to capitalise on digital’s full promise. On the topic of such low confidence amongst marketers in their digital skills, check out the short video below. Do you agree? It would be great to hear what you think #MarketingTherapy. * Vision Critical conducted the research on behalf of Adobe via an online survey which among a total of 501 UK marketers between 11-14 October 2013, of which 90% of respondents are senior level or sole decision makers.  The remaining 10% were in more junior roles.  80% of the respondents were male, 20% female. **Source: Internet Advertising Bureau UK (IAB) Digital Adspend report, conducted by PwC, with UKOM-approved comScore consumer data   Author: Date Created:24 October 2013 Date Published: Headline:UK Marketers in Need of #MarketingTherapy Social Counts: Keywords: Publisher:Adobe Image:http://blogs.adobe.com/digitaleurope/files/2013/10/40.png

At a round­table dis­cus­sion ear­lier this week, hosted by Kristin Brewe from the IAB and attended by indus­try experts, we explored new research* into what’s keep­ing 500 senior UK mar­keters awake at night.

It revealed mar­keters are suf­fer­ing from a “dig­i­tal dis­con­nect” with less than 10 per­cent of senior UK mar­keters hav­ing full con­fi­dence in their own dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing skills [8%] or those of their teams [9%]. In addi­tion, over 50 per­cent of mar­keters in the UK are not test­ing cam­paigns or con­tent, rely­ing instead on instinct.

This echoes research recently car­ried out in the US where just 9 per­cent of mar­keters are fully con­fi­dent that their dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing is work­ing, while 61 per­cent believe that for most com­pa­nies, dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing approaches are a con­stant cycle of trial and error.

The prob­lems in the UK are height­ened by the fact that two thirds of mar­ket­ing depart­ments do not have a devel­oped data analy­sis and insight strat­egy and so there is a lack of infor­ma­tion as well as expe­ri­ence. The con­sen­sus at the round­table was that the first step for mar­keters has to be to make dig­i­tal a more cen­tral focus in their mar­ket­ing strat­egy. They need to con­cen­trate on the chan­nels that will help them achieve their busi­ness goals.

I believe that at the moment many mar­keters don’t quite know what is work­ing and don’t feel they have the nec­es­sary skills or expe­ri­ences to suc­ceed in the dig­i­tal envi­ron­ment. They are find­ing it tough to stay up to date in such a rapidly chang­ing indus­try and aren’t get­ting sup­port or train­ing. Our research showed that less than 3 per­cent of respon­dents received for­mal train­ing. This is wor­ry­ing, as despite not hav­ing full con­fi­dence in their teams, 51 per­cent of mar­keters rely on col­leagues to keep up with the pace of dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing trends.

The lack of con­fi­dence is lead­ing to key chan­nels being over­looked and under­val­ued. Sur­pris­ingly, almost half of mar­keters admit to not hav­ing a mobile strat­egy in place, despite smart­phone own­er­ship reach­ing over two-thirds (68%)** of the UK pop­u­la­tion in June 2013 and mobile now account­ing for 14** per­cent of all dig­i­tal adver­tis­ing spend. And only 27** per­cent of mar­keters are mar­ket­ing at all through mobile channels.

Although mar­keters may not have full con­fi­dence in their skills or knowl­edge, most recog­nise just how big an oppor­tu­nity there is in dig­i­tal. For me, it is those who have the knowl­edge and insight and who are train­ing their teams to be more ‘digital-ready’ who will be in the strongest posi­tion to cap­i­talise on digital’s full promise.

On the topic of such low con­fi­dence amongst mar­keters in their dig­i­tal skills, check out the short video below. Do you agree? It would be great to hear what you think #MarketingTherapy.

* Vision Crit­i­cal con­ducted the research on behalf of Adobe via an online sur­vey which among a total of 501 UK mar­keters between 11–14 Octo­ber 2013, of which 90% of respon­dents are senior level or sole deci­sion mak­ers.  The remain­ing 10% were in more junior roles.  80% of the respon­dents were male, 20% female.

**Source: Inter­net Adver­tis­ing Bureau UK (IAB) Dig­i­tal Adspend report, con­ducted by PwC, with UKOM-approved com­Score con­sumer data