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Data literacy is a gaping hole in marketing teams says new report report

Change Makers

Data literacy is a gaping hole in marketing teams says new report report


A local study by Arktic Fox and Michael Page Australia has identified data and analytics as the number one skill gap in marketing teams. The majority of marketing leaders say data literacy was not strong in their departments.

The Marketing State of Play, An Australian Study’ explores core challenges that marketing teams are tackling, including how the sector is evolving in the wake of the myriad of challenges they face.

The second biggest skill gap identified is measuring performance and outcomes. A lack of data literacy suggests that many marketing departments are struggling to make sense of the data at their disposal and utilise it to demonstrate ROI. 

“The study found 38 percent of marketers are struggling to secure additional investment in marketing budget and resources – which is not surprising when you consider the lack of capability in data and analytics to demonstrate the value of marketing,” says Arktic Fox founder and director Teresa Sperti.

“Although hiring an analyst or team of specialists may be on the agenda for many – we believe it is important to address the issue more broadly. We need to make data concepts more accessible and build confidence in marketing professionals more broadly to utilise data as part of what they do on a daily basis.”

In the wake of COVID-19, it is no surprise that a key priority for marketing teams is digital transformation. In fact, 31 percent of marketing leaders cited it as one of their key priorities. Despite an accelerated focus on digital in the past 12 months, Sperti says that digital transformation could be hampered by skill gaps and dwindling marketing budgets.

Other key findings from the report included:

  • 38 percent of marketing teams had their budget reduced over the past 12 months;
  • 29 percent of marketing leaders feel finding implementation partners that we can trust / can support our needs is one of the key challenges they face when it comes to MarTech;
  • Balancing short and longer-term priorities is the biggest single challenge marketing leaders face in a rapidly changing environment; and
  • 54 percent of marketing leaders stated that COVID forced their marketing department to think differently and innovate.

According to the report, 40 percent of marketers cited that they have or are planning to in-house skills and capabilities as one of the key ways to improve performance and drive efficiency.

Leela Lewis, director of marketing and digital at Michael Page Australia says,  “In recent months we have seen growth in demand for digital communications specialists client side which could be influenced by the desire for marketers to bring these skills and capabilities increasingly in-house in areas like content, social and creative.”


Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash.

Jasmine Giuliani

Jasmine Giuliani was the Editor of Marketing Mag from March 2020 to September 2021.

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