Most Executives Unable to Measure ROI, Study Finds

Nearly three quarters of the marketing executives in the United States and the United Kingdom say that their companies are unable to measure a marketing campaign's return on investment, according to a study released today by Accenture, a management and technology consulting organization.

In addition, 70 percent of those executives say they continue to have trouble capturing the attention of customers, and 65 percent are struggling to integrate and share customer data across the organization to develop a single view of the customer.

The results are based on interviews conducted with 175 marketing heads in the two countries earlier this year.

Other challenges frequently encountered by a large percentage of marketers include measuring the return on their marketing investments because of shortcomings in a company's ability to integrate its sales, marketing and customer service tools.

The study also found that 58 percent of marketing executives frequently struggle to shorten the time it takes to create and launch a marketing campaign. Nearly 20 percent of companies participating in the survey take more than four months to develop and launch a campaign, and 33 percent take two to four months. The average company's campaign cycle time is about 2.5 months.

The study also uncovers what marketing executives consider their most pressing needs. These include access to more accurate and fresher data (68 percent); integration among the numerous customer touch points (67 percent); better overall customer strategy (67 percent); and more collaboration, both within the function and with the sales and customer service departments (59 percent).

While input from interviewees was largely consistent between those in the United States and those in the United Kingdom, the study also found some differences. For example, establishing a single view of the customer and measuring campaign ROI were viewed as much more of a problem in the United Kingdom than in the United States.

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