Key Marketing and Analytics Trends for 2021

Last updated: 04-17-2021

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Key Marketing and Analytics Trends for 2021

We’ve talked a lot on this show about how today’s marketers are consumed by data. After all, it’s how you get a better picture of who your customer is and how you get a clearer understanding of what’s working and what isn’t across your channels. But the real question is how are you turning all of that data and all of those insights into action that has a measurable effect? 

“Data isn’t this thing that you look at every now and then, it’s just something that becomes part of your everyday workflow.”

Those are the words of Jay Wilder, Vice President of Product Marketing for Marketing Cloud at Salesforce, and on this episode of Marketing Trends, Jay dives into some of the ways that he has seen marketers optimizing data recently. He also gives an insider’s look at the latest Salesforce State of Marketing report, which analyzes the trends that are driving performance in 2021. Jay touches on everything from how the rapid shift to digital impacted customers’ expectations of companies and their behaviors, to how this digital-first world has led to an increasingly more complex marketing analytics landscape and he explains why the data we have now is not coming in fast enough.

“There’s always that next opportunity to make analytics and data more accessible, faster, easier, and something that becomes part of everyone’s day-to-day workday. The goal was just to make that data-driven culture something that you can rely on and evolve over time.”

“Starting with the customer first, 88% of customers today are expecting companies to accelerate their digital initiatives coming out of COVID-19.”

“There’s been a big trend toward prioritizing a single source of truth for customers. 60% of marketers today are saying that is a No.1 imperative for them, because if you don’t know who your customer is, it’s very difficult to build a personalized relationship. As marketers, the data leads us to understand what our customers are asking for.”

“There’s a lot of discussion around the connected experience or the connected moments that build a relationship, and marketers are moving away from thinking about independent channels across different devices. It’s really thinking about how do we orchestrate a cohesive, personalized, customer experience that may start online in a browser, may shift over into a mobile app, may then pick up from an inbox. You may be checking out online through an ecommerce and then you’re interacting with a chat bot for service. This is the holy grail, connecting that entire digital journey together.”

“If you’re truly thinking customer centric, you have to think about things from the customer’s point of view. And they don’t think about customer sales, commerce service as separate experiences. It’s just all one experience.”

“The marketing analytics landscape is a really challenging one. It’s like very rocky terrain and you do not want to drive through it with any old vehicle.”

“On average, marketers are using eight different channels today, with search, social, programmatic, mobile, video, et cetera. That actually breaks out into 21 different marketing platforms to implement and operationalize their strategies. If I want to understand performance I need to tab through 21 different platforms and try to figure out what’s working and what’s not. How do I compare and contrast different performances and so forth? So there’s a lot of data that’s in a lot of different places that describes what you’re spending, what your engagement looks like, and how that is all coming together into conversion and your business goals.”

“Data and analytics is just too slow. We’re getting monthly reports, and we’re getting quarterly assessments. And we’re getting things that are still in the rear view mirror that are telling us at a surface level, what happened versus seeing what’s happening out in the market with my marketing and my customer and my messaging and my strategy and my tactics and my investments, and actually seeing how they’re playing out in flight.”

“One of the really interesting areas that’s opening up today is first-party data and first-party relationships. There’s a lot more opportunity now to have a logged-in experience with our customers where we’re in sync through logged-in web, through email mobile communications. That logged-in experience as marketers and marketing analysts gives us the opportunity to start thinking about how we measure in ways that are not just engagement, clicks, conversions, onsite traffic and so forth. We can really get into what are the actual behaviors that we want to see from our customers.”

“Only 25% of marketers out there today actually have a fully-automatic approach to their data prep, their data integration, how they manage the data and they wind up spending every month, or weeks collecting, cleansing, harmonizing data. And you fall into that monthly cadence where you don’t have data flowing every single day and it’s not in one system of record where it’s all organized.”

“Data isn’t this thing that you look at every now and then, it’s just something that becomes part of your everyday workflow.”

Jay Wilder is the Vice President of Product Marketing for Salesforce Marketing Cloud. Jay leads product messaging and positioning strategy and is passionate about the role of data in growing relationships and business impact. Jay brings a diverse marketing perspective, leading Datorama through acquisition in 2018 by Salesforce, and previously leading go-to-market strategies in consumer mobile app, enterprise enablement, and consumer package good spaces

Marketing Trends podcast is brought to you by Salesforce. Discover marketing built on the world’s number one CRM: Salesforce. Put your customer at the center of every interaction. Automate engagement with each customer. And build your marketing strategy around the entire customer journey. Salesforce. We bring marketing and engagement together. Learn more at salesforce.com/marketing.

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