The debut issue of Marketer’s Pulse, the ACA’s new research initiative probing what marketers are thinking, planning and experiencing in their workplaces, and with their suppliers, partners and consumers, has been released.
Overall, the study (based on a survey conducted among senior Canadian marketers in March 2012) found the Canadian marketing environment appears to be stable. Against a backdrop of moderately improving business conditions and consumer confidence, the perspectives of Canadian marketers are perceived to be modestly optimistic.
Here are the report’s top-line results:
Business conditions are reported to be stable to improving for 85% of respondents.
Three-quarters of respondents perceived the confidence of their consumers will remain stable for the coming year.
There was a three-way split among respondents on the question of marketing communications budgets increasing, decreasing or staying the same this year over last.
Marketing communications budgets are shifting to focus more on the digital/social media, according to just over half of respondents.
Head count in marketing organizations is remaining unchanged or growing for almost 80% of respondents; however, one-third indicated a change in marketing organization structure.
Marketing planning cycles are reported to skew short term versus long term, and toward a business-building/price promotion focus versus brand-building.
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) appears to be on every marketer’s radar screen, with respondents indicating their CSR efforts will remain as planned or will be expanding.
Based on a list of CMO challenges, respondents reported a strong focus on ‘understanding the changes in the consumer decision journey due to their increased access to information and transactional touch points.’