Marketers who have spent the last year navigating the pandemic say they have been working to meet consumers where they are, which is increasingly online. This has fueled a push to alter digital strategies and work around a complicated data landscape, according to a Salesforce survey of more than 8,000 marketing leaders worldwide.
According to the survey, 84% of respondents say customer expectations are changing their digital initiatives, with 34% struggling to innovate marketing technology, tactics and strategies. Social media and digital ads have been the most used tool to reach these audiences, with 91% of respondents leaning on these channels, as well as video, which 90% of respondents say they use. In comparison, 76% are tapping email, and 69% are turning to mobile channels. Artificial intelligence is also gaining momentum, with 60% of marketers saying they have a full-fledged AI strategy.
While there’s been a surge in people adopting streaming TV services, just 53% of respondents say they are using over-the-top video or traditional TV as part of their marketing strategies.
As brands experiment with new marketing strategies, how they measure results is also shifting, with 78% of respondents saying they have changed or reprioritized their key performance indicators. The three highest-growing KPIs include customer referral rates, customer acquisition costs, and content engagement.
Customer data is driving marketing efforts, with 78% of respondents saying data fuels their customer engagement. But the data landscape has certainly become more heated amid privacy lockdowns from Apple and Google. Updates to Apple’s iOS smartphone operating system restrict third-party cookies and other identifiers, and will eventually block email tracking and other “fingerprinting” techniques, while Google has committed to deprecating the third-party cookie, which helps track consumers around the internet.