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digital marketers

76% of marketers say marketing has changed more in the past two years than the past 50 years prior.

They say they’re confused, lost, unsure, ineffective or some variation there of.

When reading the research, from Adobe—which is colored by a large chunks of editorial—one might gather marketers don’t know what they’re doing. If that’s not fair, you could conclude marketers know what they’re doing, but don’t know if they should be doing it.

Seriously. That’s what I got. Read it and share your take.

Whatever your take, numbers are numbers. Here are the first few:

  • 48% of digital marketers feel highly proficient.
  • Just 40% think their marketing is effective.
  • How many strongly state their digital marketing is working? 9%.

Care to hand over your budget to these people?

Marketers can’t count sheep.

Proceed with caution. Here are more bone-chilling stats.

  • 76% percent of all marketers believe their companies will fail without digital marketing. (Makes me wonder about the other 24%.)
  • 76% percent believe measurement is important.
adobe digital distress
This marketing man is clearly sleep deprived and quite unsure his digital marketing tactics are working. It also appears he attends events that draw poorly.

Adobe called their report “Digital Distress: What Keeps Marketers Up at Night?” They cite the leading causes of insomnia are:

  • Concerns about reaching their customers
  • Understanding if their efforts work
  • Inability to prove effectiveness
  • The struggle to demonstrate ROI

It’s interesting the study calls these factors out separately. They seem like one and the same to me.

But anyway, I’ve been doing okay in the sleep department. Tonight might be different. I’m concerned about all my boneheaded brethren.

Marketers don’t matter much.

Adobe says:
Marketers do not think they significantly influence business strategy.

Thank you, Adobe, for extracting any sliver of confidence us marketers may have been clinging to. You’ve done wonders for our self worth. Next you’ll tell us our significant others are faking their orgasms.

Wait. Adobe’s not done.

Marketers have low confidence in their companies’ marketing performance.

And… marketers dress poorly, eat a lot of junk, sweat too much and care too little. (Okay, I made this last part up.)

Marketers can’t see straight.

Why stop a company on a roll? According to Adobe, marketers know not where to focus. Social media marketing ranked highest on the focus question (below). Seems reasonable to me. Maybe marketers aren’t so blind after all.

lack of focus

Marketers are vicious.

Get a whiff of this smack.

  • The majority of marketers think their colleagues are not highly proficient in digital marketing.
  • Only 34% say their company has their digital ducks in line (or is it online)?

Marketer are trying.

Adobe presents a pile of bar charts to help make simple conclusions look fancier than they are, but at least they get a bit rosier here.

  • Investments in digital programs, technology and staff will be going up. Way up.

This would be spectacular news if anybody actually knew what they were doing.

trial and error

Well, uh, honesty is the best policy. Most marketers try stuff. And err. Notice the gal in the photo won’t show her face. She’s trying not to err.

Marketers are feeling the heat.

Adobe tells us their findings indicate:

  • Marketers feel pressure to show return on investment in marketing spend.
  • A majority of the survey participants say it will become more important next year.
  • Marketers (still) rate “brand building: as the #1 most important topic.
  • Marketing measurement is the second most important topic, but represents the largest gap between importance and performance (whatever that means).

Some digital marketers are high performers.

Adobe allowed the participants to rate themselves and slapped the label “high performers” on companies that believe they are. Simple enough. The low-down on the high performers:

  • They feel more prepared doing digital.
  • They invest more in digital.

Was all this shady news a set-up for a product plug? I hope not. Most of us digital marketers try so hard not to turn every piece of content into an ad. But hey, someone has to pay for all this insightful research. And so now a word from our sponsors.

Clicks are off the charts.

Do you know what you’re marketing is doing? Apparently Adobe Cloud is helpful for this.