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Even the most "marketing is an art" creative types love a good data point. Here, some of the most interesting recent stats.

Admit it. No matter how much magic there is to marketing, we're all hooked on data. We use it to confirm a suspicion, make our case, benchmark ourselves. It helps guide strategic marketing decisions and influences creative.

So, in the spirit of data sharing, we've gone through our recent archives* to present you with a selection of compelling, odd, or surprising data points.

Only 23% of executives surveyed rate their inbound marketing efforts as “very successful,” according to Ascend2's “Inbound Marketing Research Summary Report.” Not surprising, considering that 46% cite lack of an effective strategy as their top challenge in successful inbound marketing.

Do consumers prefer relevant emails? Well, according to Silverpop, 71% of consumers surveyed would be more likely to purchase from a brand if its emails were tailored to their likes and preferences, and 58% of consumers won't open emails if they seem unrelated to their needs. Oh, and 40% won't open emails if the subject lines seem irrelevant. Yeah, we're sensing a trend here.

Mobile is still on the move. Spurred by smartphone proliferation and the expansion of low-cost cellular data plans, dollars spent on mobile ads increased by 122% to $8.1 billion in North America last year, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau's "Global Mobile Advertising Revenue" study. And consumers are responding. So far this year m-commerce has generated $12.2 billion in sales, according the “Custora E-commerce Pulse Mobile Report."

Marketing dedicates 25% of its budget to technology, says CEB research. We say: For now. 

The check is definitely in the mail. A 1% increase in Standard Mail volume translated into a 5% revenue gain in Q3 2014 for the U.S. Postal Service; that's $327 million thanks in large part to the exigency rate hike.

According to “The Local Mobile Advantage of Retailing” report by G/O Digital, 5.1% of consumers surveyed prefer to use laptops while shopping in-store. Did they misunderstand the question or do these shoppers really schlep their laptops to the mall?

More than half of consumers (59%) say they're likely to watch branded video on a company website, and 71% of marketers agree that brands should be video content producers, says research from Levels Beyond. But 75% of marketers say that producing video is not a priority for their company, and 40% rarely uses video for their brand. This brings to mind such clichés as "missed opportunity," "leaving money on the table," and "a major disconnect."

There's hope for marketing and sales collaboration, after all. Nearly half of marketing and sales decision makers (44%) cite increased sales revenue as a top marketing automation objective, according to Ascend2's “Marketing Automation Benchmark Summary Report.”

Despite wooing from e-retailers aiming to capture a slice of the back-to-school pie, 89% of parents of school-age children will be scouring stores to touch merchandise and save on shipping fees, says a study from Accenture. And parents looking to sweeten the in-store deals will be webrooming to check inventory and, of course, price match.

Under the category of "room for improvement," just 12% of CFOs consider their CMO “excellent” at linking marketing activities to ROI, according to Active International. No surprise that only 13% of CMOs always agree with their CFO.

The tough love doesn't end there. According to Accenture, 43% of CMOs claim that their company's tech development process is too slow for digital marketing's transient nature, and 43% of IT executives say marketing's requirements and priorities change too often. What's more, 25% of CIOs feel that CMOs lack the vision to anticipate digital trends. Ouch.

*Elements of this post were excerpted. Thank you to the DMN edit team for their original reporting on these studies.


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