Earlier this year, Adobe published the results of its 2014 Digital Marketing Optimization Survey. The 2014 survey received over 1,000 responses from around the globe. Sixty percent (60%) of the respondents were from North America, 27% were from Europe, and 13% were from Asia.
A primary focus of the 2014 Adobe survey was to identify what “best in class” enterprises are doing differently to drive revenue growth and improved business results. For this survey, Adobe defined “best in class” as the top 20% of companies based on conversion rate, and it segmented survey results based on this definition. The Adobe survey revealed that the average conversion rate for all surveyed companies was 2.7%, while the best in class organizations had a conversion rate of 4.5% or higher. So, best in class enterprises are converting prospects to customers at 1.7 times the average rate.
The authors of the survey report contend that best in class organizations exhibit five characteristics that separate them from average companies and explain the performance gap.
- They test to make decisions—Seventy percent (70%) of best in class enterprises use testing in various ways to support marketing decision-making. Only 46% of other firms in the survey use testing in their decision-making processes. The Adobe survey results also show that enterprises that use testing to optimize their decision-making increase conversion rates by 100%.
- The spend more on optimization activities—Best in class enterprises are 54% more likely than other firms to be devoting more than 5% of their budgets to optimization activities such as testing and the implementation of new technologies.
- They believe in (and use) targeted content—Best in class enterprises are 43% more likely than other firms to be using targeted content in some form. High-performing firms recognize that using targeted content enhances content relevance and enables them to deliver more engaging customer experiences.
- The democratize their efforts—Best in class firms are 38% more likely than other firms to involve other departments or business functions in their marketing optimization efforts.
- They recognize that mobile is essential—Eighty-three percent (83%) of best in class enterprises say that mobile is important to their 2014 marketing efforts, compared to only 67% of other firms.
In some ways, the results of the Adobe survey aren’t all that surprising. For example, most enterprise marketers recognize that it’s important to use data, analytics, and testing to make marketing decisions, and most understand the value of targeted content. However, these results do indicate that many firms still have work to do to maximize the effectiveness of their marketing efforts.