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MARKETING R.O.I.

Worsening global economy puts pressure on CMOs to prove their ROI​

By our News Team | 2022

Despite evidence that shows it’s a bad idea, marketing budgets are often the first to be scrutinised and tightened in times of uncertainty.

More than three-quarters (77%) of chief marketing officers are feeling the pressure to prove short-term return on investment (ROI) on their marketing campaigns, according to a recently published study by LinkedIn.

The survey of more than 2,900 C-suite employees around the world finds that corporate leaders are prioritising cutting costs in marketing, advertising, technology and workforce talent as a result of the current economic uncertainty.

Marketing ROI

Photo by Antoni Shkraba from Pexels

And with 40% of businesses saying they are “financially preparing” for tough times, nearly a third of CMOs are concerned that they will have to operate more reactively, while a similar proportion are worried that they will need to limit creative campaigns.

“Despite the evidence of the long-term damage pausing ad spend can have on brands, marketing budgets are often the first to be scrutinised and tightened in times of uncertainty,” said Tom Pepper, Senior Director at LinkedIn Marketing Solutions for Latin America, Europe, Middle East and Africa. 

“Maintaining existing budgets and strengthening future ones is dependent on marketers’ ability to speak the language of the CFO, ask the right questions and pull the right strategic levers that ladder up to business objectives.”

Demonstrate business impact and befriend the CFO

He added: “By turning data into information which demonstrates business impact, and nurturing relationships with important leaders like the CFO, brands will put themselves in a much stronger position now and in the future.”

Meanwhile, a separate study by LinkedIn’s B2B Institute in conjunction with market research and data analytics firm YouGov, found that cutting back on marketing spend can potentially be devastating for brands, with a drop in memorability being far more costly in the long term. 

The researchers found that when advertisers paused advertising for a year or more, sales for brands of all sizes – whether small, medium or large – dropped by nearly 50%.

To stay top of mind, B2B marketers are keen to continue focusing on brand building, with more than a third (39%) planning to maintain or increase spend in this area over the next six months. B2B marketers say that measuring campaign effectiveness and proving ROI of marketing investments is their biggest challenge currently.

According to a media statement from LinkedIn, the social media platform will be launching new tools and ad formats for B2B marketers across the globe in the coming months, including a new Revenue Attribution Report measurement tool. This connects CRM data to LinkedIn marketing campaigns to measure the impact of work on sales metrics.

Marketers will also be able to promote individual employee posts from company pages, and Click to Message Ads is a new service that will allow buyers to click on an ad and start a message with a brand from their LinkedIn feed, meaning that marketers can better guide potential customers through every touchpoint of the purchasing journey.

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