It is always good to discuss which guidelines will be accelerated in the coming year. Among the dozens of predictions, I would like to share five of them to provide an overview of some of the mega-trends Forrester (go.forrester.com) predicts will affect marketers in Europe:
- Consumers will search for deeper meaning, meaning Marketers will have to rally around customer value.
Today’s customers live in hectic times. Disinformation campaigns, social isolation, wealth inequality, the impact of automation, globalization, climate change and political discontent surround them. As a result, customers want to align their purchases with their values. This is not a new trend, but one that has been slowly rising from the niche to the mainstream. For example, 59% of UK consumers consider company values when making their purchasing decisions. The percentage is even higher among the younger generation. While people on lower incomes cannot buy according to their values, the desire to align with their values is constant at all income levels. This is a double-edged sword: by making only superficial commitments without real visible actions, some brands will risk losing trust and capital.
- To shift from storytelling to storymaking, CMOs will extend their span of control, but only 10% of them will truly elevate the marketing function.
Marketers will have to establish a control that extends beyond marketing, because one simply cannot build, express, sell, communicate, connect or service today’s brands without continuity in budget or authority. That continuity is essential to ensure that the company demonstrates its brand promise consistently. If marketers do not elevate their role in the organizational chart of companies, the marketing function risks being eliminated or dissolved. CMOs will need to have the authority to place consumers at the center of their company’s values, experiences and processes..
- The number of CX executives will grow by 25%.
By 2020, customer experience professionals will have to justify and quantify their impact on the business. In response to market turmoil, CEOs will require CX initiatives to move beyond the pilot phase and demonstrate their contributions to earnings and/or performance growth. Measurement, metrics and analytics will be crucial to the success of their proposals.
- Marketing technology spending will get a strategic calibration.
On average, marketers are spending 22% of their budgets on technology. In Europe, more than two thirds of them plan to further increase technology investment next year and will do so in numbers of plus 10%. However, this is a necessary but not sufficient condition, brands will need to combine their technology with their creative capabilities to attain real differentiation.
B2B marketers will finally embrace customer centricity.
Gradually, B2B buyers have been shifting their commitment to digital channels. In 2020, B2B marketers will reorganize their organizations and reassess their priorities for investment. Thirty percent more organisations will move to audience-based structures rather than operating by channel or industry-specific domain.
See full predictions reports here.