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Cross-Channel Marketing: Hot, but Not Happening

Just 10% say their messaging, execution and delivery are aligned across touchpoints

September 4, 2014 | Advertising & Marketing

As consumers bounce from device to device throughout the day, marketers are trying to figure out how to track them across platforms. As a result, cross-channel marketing was a top priority for the majority of client-side marketers worldwide queried in a May 2014 study by Econsultancy in association with Oracle Marketing Cloud. More than two-thirds of respondents agreed that integrating all marketing activities across channels was a main goal.

Cross-Channel Marketing Capabilities of Client-Side Marketers Worldwide, May 2014 (% of respondents)

However, a look at the other cross-channel capabilities cited by respondents showed that just because cross-channel was a priority didn’t mean they were actually doing it. For example, 43% said that they could understand their consumers’ journeys and change their marketing mix as a result, while 30% had implemented teams to work on integrated marketing. Less than one-fifth of respondents could measure the financial impact of cross-channel efforts—a problem, considering that marketing results matter—and the ability to determine customer retention as a result of integrated marketing trailed even further behind.

Marketers Worldwide Who Agree that Messaging, Execution and Delivery Strategies Are Not Integrated Across Touchpoints, May 2014 (% of respondents)

Just 7% of respondents said their organizations were prepared to execute cross-channel marketing, while 35% said they were “not really” ready. And fully 62% of respondents agreed that their messaging, execution and delivery strategies weren’t aligned across touchpoints, compared with just 10% who disagreed with this statement.

Of course, mobile plays a huge role in cross-channel marketing, and this year, more marketers were focused on integrating this channel into their strategy: 76%, vs. 60% in 2013. However, respondents still had a long way to go here as well. Just 23% had integrated mobile messaging, and only 16% said the same about push notifications.

Ascend2 polling in June 2014 found that a large proportion of marketing professionals worldwide didn’t view integration as a barrier to mobile success. Among respondents, 26% said cross-channel integration was a leading challenge to mobile marketing success, compared with 38% who cited first-place in-house expertise and 36% who called out No. 2 budget limitations.

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