CMOs Challenged By Consumers’ Personalized Engagement Demands


San Jose, CA — Nearly three-quarters, 72 percent, of CMOs say it takes them too long to act on insights from data, resulting in hurdles when it comes to meeting shoppers’ personalized engagement expectations, according to a study by the CMO Council in partnership with Catalina Marketing Corp.

Just 3 percent of CMOs feel they are exceptionally effective at turning data and intelligence into marketing action, the CMO Council reports, while only 10 percent say they are able to immediately move from intelligence gathering to action.

In order to close the gap, marketers report a major need for critical data sources and capabilities such as multi-touch attribution, digital engagement insights, real-time shopper behavior data and automated response abilities.

“Understanding intent — the ‘why’ behind the buy — lies at the heart of personalizing engagement and reaching the consumer in their moment of need,” says Marta Cyhan, CMO of Catalina, which specializes in shopper intelligence and personalized digital media for CPG brands and retailers. “Many of our most successful brand partners are tapping into insights tied to motivations like all-natural, organic and social good to engage shoppers at a more personal level, rather than buying media based purely on demographics.”

This engagement can include factoring in whether a consumer seeks protein, prefers plant-based products or avoids GMOs and tracking their response to a campaign in near real-time, she gives as an example, noting this method gives marketers new insights as well as better campaign results.

While CMOs show interest in these types of practices, 72 percent report personalization capabilities are evolving too slowly because of a failure to effectively measure results, lack of the right talent and budget and an inability to access the right data, according to the CMO Council.

Nic Umana, global digital insights lead at Mars Wrigley Confectionery U.S., LLC, says: “The consumer journey is no longer predictable or linear, rather we have to find those moments of discovery where we can deliver a smile and, hopefully, a chocolate.”

She adds the candymaker has already identified more than 20 “moments” that offer opportunities for conversion.