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11 Must-Have Marketing Competencies (part 2)

Posted By The Marketing Institute, Wednesday 13 November 2019
Updated: Monday 11 November 2019

The Marketer Pathways framework was developed by the Marketing Institute following consultation with over 50 senior marketing practitioners from across a range of sectors. It dives into the business, marketing and people competencies that are required at various marketing career stages so marketers can identify where they are on their career journey, assess what they need to do next, develop a plan of action.

This section focuses on Marketing specific competencies and indicative behaviours. At each level we describe the core areas of marketing specialisation from brand, channel, digital marketing and new product development.

At the early career stages, you can use this to explore areas of specialisation, at the later career stages it will aid you in facilitating the development of your marketing team. 

This week we are looking at the remaining 5 out of the 11 marketing competencies.

 

7. Marketing Campaigns

Ability to develop successful marketing campaigns and lead and guide implementation. Uses strong market and customer insights to inform strategy and to deliver high impact campaigns. Works well with external agencies to develop highly creative campaigns. Strong expertise in the key campaign elements, including: analytics, research, brand development, advertising, digital marketing, sponsorship, promotional activities, direct marketing and consumer PR. A strong marketing communications capability and an ability to develop the best approach to effectively communicate to customers and other key audiences. 

Assess your level

 

8. New Product Development

Ability to develop an effective new product development (NPD) strategy for the business. Capacity to create an effective NPD process to generate a range of products, services and value propositions, consistent with overall business and marketing strategies. Ensures that the organisation’s overall product and service offerings, delivers on the brand promise and an excellent customer experience. The capacity to make the organisation’s product and service range, a key point differentiation and competitive advantage. 

Assess your level

 

9.Marketing Strategy

Has a clear understanding of the organisation’s vision, strategy and the key strategic drivers of growth. Can use these insights to realise organization objectives and to achieve business results. Takes a broad view of the organisation and its business and has a deep understanding of its internal and external operating environments. Brings clear strategic thinking to such issues such as; industry trends, the competitive environment, market and customer opportunities, emerging technology and effective stakeholder management. Can link the organisation strategy to day to day outputs and key operational deliverables. 

Assess your level

 

10. Research

Ability to use high quality customer, market information and analytics, to develop key customer and market insights. The use of such insights, to inform and guide overall business and marketing strategies. Capability to use relevant customer metrics such as, satisfaction, engagement and consumer behaviors, to evaluate the overall success of the marketing strategy and to guide new product development efforts. 

Assess your level

 

11. Customer Centricity

Has a clear focus on meeting the evolving needs of customers. Develops a customer experience which is consistent with the brand positioning, promise and values. Drives customer loyalty and satisfaction. Seeks to develop long-term and sustainable (profitable) customer relationships, using customer data and insights to better understand customer priorities and needs and deliver the best possible customer experience. 

Assess your level

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The Consumer Market Monitor - Q3 2019

Posted By The Marketing Institute & UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, Tuesday 12 November 2019
Updated: Tuesday 12 November 2019

consumer market monitor Q3 2019Irish Online Shopping To Reach New High Of €16 Billion


- Online spending is forecast to reach €16 billion this year, up 16% on 2018;
- 40% of this goes on online retailing, while the balance is spent on services such as flights and mobile top-ups;
- Online retail spending will account for €6.5 billion, equating to 13% out of total €48 billion retail spend;
- €250 million expected to be spent on Black Friday sales, with €100 million spent online and €150 million spent with traditional retailers. 

 

 

read report

 

Dublin, November 12th, 2019: The latest Consumer Market Monitor (CMM), published today by the Marketing Institute of Ireland and UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School shows that Irish consumers are continuing to spend despite some weakening in confidence and the relentless move towards online retailing is continuing unabated. This trend will be underlined on Black Friday, when €250 million is forecast to be spent by Irish shoppers, split almost equally between online and bricks and mortar retailers, according to Marketing Professor Mary Lambkin of UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, author of the report.  

“Whilst higher wages and improving household finances are welcome developments, Irish retailers must urgently lift their game in order to win greater shares of online spend” said Tom Trainor, Chief Executive of the Marketing Institute of Ireland.

 

General Summary

The Irish economy is continuing to grow strongly, with consumer spending providing the main stimulus together with property investment. Personal spending grew by 3.4% in 2018 to €105 billion and is up by 3% in the first half of this year which is a strong performance. 

A recent weakening in consumer confidence, however, as well as a slowdown in car sales point to some loss of momentum so latest forecasts point to a slightly reduced growth rate of 2.6% for 2019 as a whole, with a further slowing to 2.4% in 2020.

This is a relatively good performance against a backdrop of uncertainty concerning the outcome of Brexit. It seems likely that this uncertainty will continue to weigh on consumers up to the end of this year, although the risk of a “no deal” Brexit seems to be receding giving reason for renewed optimism. The strong fundamentals in the Irish economy are also a counterbalance to any negative sentiment associated with Brexit.  

The key fundamentals are the continuing growth in employment and incomes leading to significant improvements in household finances. There are now 2.3 million people at work, up 45,000 (2%) year-on-year, and up by 439,000 or 20% from the low point in mid-2012. Employment is expected to continue growing but at a moderating rate as the economy approaches full employment. Projected growth of 2.4% for 2019 and 1.7% in 2020 will add another 100,000 people to the workforce. 

Earnings growth has also played a significant part in recent years as wages have begun to rise.  Wages increased by 2.5% per annum from 2015 to 2017, by 3.5% in 2018 and are trending up by a further 3.6% this year as the labour market approaches capacity.

The combination of more people at work and higher wages has led to substantial increases in the amount of disposable income circulating in the economy. Aggregate disposable income increased by 5% a year from 2015 to 2017. This rose to 6% in 2018 for a total of €110 billion and was up again in H1 of this year by 6.6%, suggesting a final figure of about €117 billion. 

Consumer spending has also been supported by improving household finances, mainly as a result of the increasing value of peoples’ homes. Household wealth stood at €772 billion in 2018, equivalent to €444,000 per household or €159,000 per person. This is up by 70% from the trough of €430 billion in Q2 2012. Perceptions of increasing wealth breed confidence and encourage consumers to release some of that wealth for spending.

Irish consumers are also beginning to supplement their own resources by taking on some debt, mainly to support the purchase and furnishing of homes. Following a decade of deleveraging with repayments consistently exceeding new borrowing, borrowing is beginning to increase again at a modest rate. New lending of €1.4 billion was advanced in 2018, an increase of 2%. 

€1.1 billion of this was for the purchase of residential property with the balance for other personal consumption. Much of this is going on purchases of household goods, the strongest retail category currently. 2019 is showing a similar growth rate of 2%, equivalent to €2 billion in new loans.

It is important to note, however, that credit and borrowing are not major contributory factors in recent spending, unlike in the last boom. The ratio of debt/disposable income of Irish households has continued to fall, down from 215% at the peak in 2012 to 120% this year, a reduction of 40%. Also, savings deposits grew by €4.5 billion, or 4.7%, in the past year. 

55,000 homes were sold in 2018 and sales are up again this year, but only by 2%, suggesting a total of 56,000 for 2019. In contrast, the number of mortgages approved was up 10% in the first half of the year indicating that demand is still strong. 65% of those mortgages are going to first time buyers showing that this is still the predominant need. 

The market for cars is the most troubled sector right now; sales of new cars were down by -7% in the year to the end of September, for a total of 107,686. This suggests a total of about 112,000 new cars for the full year. This continues the negative trend of the previous two years, with sales down -10.5%, in 2017 and by a further -4.6% in 2018.

In contrast, there has been a substantial increase in the number of imported second-hand cars, totalling 99,456 in 2018. This trend is continuing in 2019 with sales up 6.2% to the end of September, to 80,085, suggesting about 105,000 for the full year. 

In sum, car registrations were flat in 2017 and 2018 at about 220,000. This looks like dropping to 217,000 for 2019 with sales divided more or less equally between new and imported second-hand cars. This compares to a total of 240,000 in 2007 of which 180,745 were new cars.

A final point to note is the broad-based deterioration in the UK consumer economy on foot of Brexit. There has been a weakening in virtually every metric tracked in this monitor, from property to cars to retail and services over the past two years. Recent data show that this negative trend is accelerating in tandem with the decline in the value of Sterling.  



Consumer Confidence 

Consumer confidence in Ireland began to recover in 2013 and increased steadily through 2014 and 2015, at which point it was well ahead of the previous peak in 2007 and, also, significantly higher than our European neighbours. Confidence faltered slightly in 2016 following the Brexit vote but picked up again in 2017 in response to strong employment data. 

Confidence dropped through 2018 reflecting ongoing worries about a “hard Brexit” and negative implications for the Irish economy. This downward trend continued in Q1 of 2019, going into negative territory for the first time since 2014. Confidence picked up modestly in Q2 but dipped significantly in Q3 as the Brexit debate intensified. However, confidence here is still significantly higher than in the UK and the wider EU.

Consumer confidence in the UK has been negative since Q2 2016, reaching a low of -10 in June and remaining at that level through the third quarter of this year.  Consumer confidence in the EU has also been relatively weak for several years although slightly stronger than the UK.


 
Consumer Incomes and Spending

The disposable income of Irish households rose by 6% in 2018 to a total of €110 billion, significantly overtaking the last peak of €101 million in 2007. Increasing numbers in employment together with pay increases drove this growth. 

Disposable income grew by 6.6% in the first half of this year and indications are that the year is remaining strong. On this trend, it looks likely that aggregate disposable income will reach €117 billion for the year as a whole.

There are now 2.3 million people at work, up 45,000 (2%) year-on-year, and up by 439,000 or 20% from the low in mid-2012. Employment is expected to continue growing but at a moderating rate as the economy approaches full employment. Forecast growth of 2.4% in 2019 and 1.7% in 2020 will add another 100,000 people to the workforce. 

Earnings growth has also played a significant role in recent years; wages increased by about 2.5% per annum from 2015 to 2017, by 3.5% in 2018 and by a similar rate in 2019. Average weekly earnings stand at €771 this year, equivalent to annual pay of €40,000 and this is forecast to grow further next year as the labour market tightens.

Household wealth has also recovered well from the recession, standing at €772 billion in 2018, €444,000 per household or €159,000 per person. This is up by 70% from the trough of €430 billion in Q2 2012.



Consumer Borrowing

Borrowing by Irish households grew at a record level from 2000 onwards and peaked in March 2008 at €150 billion. It then declined steadily -- down 40% by December 2016 to €88 billion. This downward trend reversed in 2017, after almost a decade, the first sign of a return to normal conditions. Household debt increased by 2% per annum in the last two years and stood at €88 billion in June 2019. 

Loans for house purchase, which account for 84% of household loans, peaked in Q1 2008 at €125 billion but reduced to a low of €73 Billion by Q4 2016, a cumulative decline of 40%. Mortgage lending has resumed growth since then, increasing by over €1 billion in 2018 (+1.4%), to a total of €74 billion by June 2019.

Lending for other consumption accounts for 18% of total borrowing. This category peaked in Q1 2008 at €30 billion but declined to €13 billion by December 2016, a reduction of 60%. It resumed growth in mid-2016, amounting to €14 billion by June 2019. 

It is important to note, however, that credit and borrowing are not major contributory factors in recent spending unlike in the last boom. The ratio of debt/disposable income of Irish households has fallen from 215% at the peak in 2012 to 120% this year, a reduction of 40%. Furthermore, household deposits have continued to grow, increasing by €4.5 billion or 4.7% in the year to June 2019. 



Residential Property

There were 55,000 homes sold to private households in 2018, an increase of 6% on the 52,000 sold in 2017. There were 30,630 mortgages drawn down which was 9% higher than the previous year. This suggests that 45% of homes were purchased with cash.

There were 34,125 residential properties sold to private households in the first three quarters of 2019, an increase of just 2% on last year, suggesting a year end figure of around 56,000. 

In contrast, the number of mortgages approved was up 13% to 26,200, indicating that demand is still strong. 65% of those mortgages are going to first time buyers demonstrating that this is still the predominant need.

New homes are playing an increasing part in fulfilling that need -- 10,300 were sold in 2018 compared to 8,800 in 2017. 18,000 new homes were completed in 2018 and this is increasing to 20,000+ this year. 

There were 1.24 million residential properties sold in the UK in 2016 but the market slowed to 1.2 million in 2017 and 2018. 2019 is weaker again, down -2% in the year to September, year-on-year.
 


Services

The services sector recovered more quickly from the recession than the retail sector, showing modest growth from 2011 onwards, and recovered more rapidly in recent years. The index overtook the 2007 peak in 2014, and made further gains in 2015, 2016, and 2017, up by 4+% per annum.

Services growth accelerated in 2018, up 8%, and this strength is continuing, with the first half of 2019 up by 9%. This is closely matched by Vat returns which were up 7% in 2018, to €14 billion, and by a further 6.4% in the first nine months of 2019.

However, the fortunes of individual service sectors have varied widely. Information/communication services did best, up 17.5% in 2018 and by 32% in the first half of 2019. Accommodation and food service were also strong, up 9% in 2018 and by 5% in 2019 to date. Professional and technical services fared worst, down 5% in 2018 and by the same again in 2019.



Car Sales

Following the recession, sales of new cars began to recover in 2014, and grew substantially in 2015 and 2016, reaching 143,000 units. This positive trend was short lived, however, reversing steadily since then. 

New car sales fell by -10.5% in 2017, for a total of 127,045, and weakened further in 2018, down -4.6% for a total of 121,157. This trend has continued in 2019, with sales for the first three quarters down by -7% for a total of 107,686, suggesting a total of 112,000 new cars for 2019.

In contrast, there has been a substantial increase in the number of imported second-hand cars, totalling 99,456 in 2018. This trend is continuing in 2019 with sales up 6.2% in the first three quarters of the year, to 80,085, suggesting a total of around 105,000 for the year. 

Taking new and imported cars together, sales were flat in 2017 and 2018 at about 220,000 and look to be down slightly to about 217,500 this year. Sales of other second-hand cars are also down this year by about 4% suggesting a general weakness in the motor trade. 



Retail Spending

Retail sales (excluding the motor trade) were solid in 2018, up by 3.8% in volume and 2.7% in value, but lower than 2017 (+5.8% in volume and +3.5% in value). 2018 sales equated to €45 billion which was back to the levels last seen in 2007.  

2019 got off to a strong start in Q1 with sales up by 5.8% in volume and 4.2% in value year-on-year. Momentum slowed a bit in Q2, with volume up by 3.6% and value up 2.2% year-on-year.  The third quarter has been relatively strong, up 4.2% in volume and by 1.8% in value year-on-year. This amounts to an average of 4.5% growth in volume and 2.7% growth in value for the year to the end of September which is consistent with 2018. 

Household equipment continued to be the fastest growing category this year, up by 13.2% in volume and 5.9% in value in Q3, year-on-year. Sub-categories within that -- electrical goods and furnishings -- did exceptionally well, up by 18.0% and 6.6% respectively.

Supermarkets and other food stores also performed very well, as did pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. Department stores and the motor trade were the weakest categories in Q3, down by -6.5% and -4.5% in volume respectively.

  • Food sales up 5.2% in volume and up 4.5% in value;
  • Non-specialised stores (supermarkets) up 5.6% in volume and 4.5% in value; 
  • Household equipment up 13.2% in volume and 5.9% in value;
  • Pharmaceuticals and cosmetics up 5.6% in volume and 3.0% in value;
  • Clothing, footwear & textiles up 1.4% in volume but down -0.7% in value; 
  • Fuel up 0.8% in volume but down by -0.5% in value; 
  • Bar sales up 0.6% in volume and down -0.7% in value. 
  • Books, newspapers and stationery down -3.1% in volume and -1.3% in value. 
  • Motor trades down -4.5% in volume and down -3.5% in value.
  • Department stores down -6.5% in volume but down -9.5% in value;
 
 

infographic consumer market monitor q1 2019

 

About the Author

Mary Lambkin

Mary Lambkin is Professor of Marketing in the UCD School of Business where she teaches courses to undergraduate and postgraduate students and is involved in a range of research projects under the general heading of marketing strategy.  She has written extensively on this subject in academic journals, and also writes commentaries on marketing topics of contemporary interest for professional publications. She has served as Head of the Marketing Group, as Dean of the UCD Business School and as a member of the Governing Authority of the university at various times, and also holds a number of positions in companies and professional organisations outside the university.


About UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School


The UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School is Ireland’s leading business school and research centre offering world-class business programmes that equip students to become future industry leaders. It is the only business school in Ireland, and one of an elite group of schools worldwide, to hold the ‘triple crown’ of accreditation from three centres of business and academic excellence—EQUIS, AACSB and AMBA. 

 
Academic programmes at UCD Smurfit School consistently rank among the world’s best and are accredited by the most internationally respected organisations. The Masters in International Business Management is ranked 7th in the world by the Financial Times and the school is ranked 24th among leading European business schools.
 
Engagement efforts have resulted in one of the world's top, business school, alumni communities with over 75,000 professionals around the globe in over 35 international chapters. Along with academic administration, leadership derives from two advisory boards, the Irish Advisory Board and the North American Advisory Board.
 
The UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School is one of four constituent parts of The UCD College of Business and offers postgraduate courses, including the MBA and a wide range of MScs in business, to approximately 1,300 students per year. The Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School opened a campus solely dedicated to graduate business education in 1991 and grew most recently with a new centre for PhD research in 2017. 

 

About The Marketing Institute of Ireland

The Marketing Institute is the professional body for Ireland's marketing people. It exists “to enable marketers to build great brands and great careers”. It does this by sharing best practice, insights and expert content, building the community of marketers, and aiding marketers in career progression. The three themes of content, community and career underpin all Institute activities. The Marketing Institute also owns and operates the All Ireland Marketing Awards, the CMO Summit, and DMX Dublin, Ireland's largest marketing conference.

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11 Must-Have Marketing Competencies (part 1)

Posted By The Marketing Institute, Wednesday 6 November 2019
Updated: Tuesday 22 October 2019

marketing competencies

The Marketer Pathways framework was developed by the Marketing Institute following consultation with over 50 senior marketing practitioners from across a range of sectors. It dives into the business, marketing and people competencies that are required at various marketing career stage so marketers can identify where they are on their career journey, assess what you need to do next, develop a plan of action.

This section focuses on Marketing specific competencies and indicative behaviours. At each level we describe the core areas of marketing specialisation from brand, channel, digital marketing and new product development.

At the early career stages, you can use this to explore areas of specialisation, at the later career stages it will aid you in facilitating the development of your marketing team. 

This week we are looking at 6 of the 11 marketing competencies.

 

1. Integrated Analytics 

A capacity to draw together information from both qualitative sources, such as behavioural, attitudinal, psychological, cultural; and to merge with quantitative sources, such as big data, analytics and other numerical information. Using high quality customer and market information to inform and guide business and marketing strategies. Using data analysis to evaluate the success of key marketing initiatives and overall business performance.

Assess your level

 

2. Brand

Capacity to develop an effective brand strategy which defines what the brand stands for and sets out the brand’s personality and competitive positioning. The ability to implement the agreed brand strategy, deliver on the brand promise, create brand guidelines, manage the brand’s development, assess brand performance and adapt the chosen strategy as required, to drive business success.

Assess your level

 

3. Marketing Capability

Takes responsibilities for own personal and professional development and seeks to proactively manage and direct own career. Has the ability to coach, motivate and performance manage marketing teams to deliver strong business performance. Seeks to grow the organisation’s marketing capability and puts clear plans in place to manage marketing talent and to ensure strong succession planning and continuity.

Assess your level

 

4. Channel Management

Capacity to develop an effective channel management strategy, aligning the organisation’s overall business, marketing and sales strategies. Ensures that there is a clear channel to market for their products and services. Ability to select the most effective channels to promote, sell and distribute the organisation’s products, services and value propositions. 

Assess your level

 

5. Corporate Communications

Ability to develop an effective corporate communications strategy, which ensures that there is clear two-way communication between the business and its key internal and external stakeholders. Ensures that the strategy delivers clear and consistent messaging which is credible, authentic and consistent with the organisation’s values and brand personality. Ability to identify the most appropriate communications mix for each specific audience and to adjust the approach, based on a regular review of the strategy and audience feedback. 

 Assess your level

 

6. Digital Marketing

Ability to develop, lead and implement a highly effective digital marketing strategy. Uses strong market and customer insights to guide the strategy and deliver high impact digital campaigns. Works with external digital agencies. Strong expertise in the component elements of digital marketing overall and ensures that the approach is consistent and fully integrated into the business and marketing strategies. 

 Assess your level

 

Learn more about the Marketer Pathways framework.

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CXi Ireland Customer Experience Report 2019

Posted By The CX Company, Wednesday 23 October 2019
Updated: Tuesday 22 October 2019

cxi report customer experienceThis is the fifth CXi Ireland Customer Experience (CX) Report and over the last five years we have seen a lot of change but in many ways a lot has stayed the same with the challenges in delivering CX excellence remaining constant.

The decline in CX scores, which started in 2017, has continued this year with a further drop of -4%. Only 15 brands saw their scores improve in 2019. And of these, only three saw improvements in their scores in 2018. A true indication that giving customers a consistent and meaningful experience is not easy and needs continued focus.

The Credit Union have been the number one brand in the survey for the last five years which is a fantastic achievement; they are only one of three brands to maintain top 10 status. Whilst these top 10 brands maintain the gap between themselves and the rest, the bottom brands are drifting further away. Many are struggling to get traction with their CX initiatives or are just not focused on customers. Action is key if they aren’t to fall further behind. The compacting of brands into “CX mediocrity” is still evident. If brands want to escape this mediocrity and differentiate themselves from their competitors through CX it needs to move from a project to core business strategy with the relevant sponsorship, investment and resources put behind it.

We measure CX Excellence using our Six Emotional Drivers. The one that has seen the biggest decline in the last year is “You Deliver on Your Promise”.

Rising customer expectations continue to cause major headaches for many brands. Having a clear customer promise that is understood by everyone in the organisation and aligned with delivery through each channel is critical. We talked in last year’s report about the marrying of technology with the human touch and this is still a balance that must be got right. Human beings thrive on making connections with each other. Whilst digital plays a key role in delivering an easy, stress-free experience it is the human interactions that create the memorable experiences we remember and share.

The standout insight for us this year is how important the staff experience is becoming. It may sound clichéd but it really is a case of “happy staff” = “happy customers”. Companies with a strong CX performance are recruiting for emotional intelligence and attitude, investing in training and empowering staff to deliver the right experience for the right customer at the right time. And we’re not just talking about frontline staff who interact directly with the customer. We’re talking about every member of staff. The brands who harness their people power will be the ones who reap the rewards.

The CX Company

Authors: Cathy Summers, Michael Killeen, Siobhán Mallen, Laura Killeen and Isabelle Fitzgerald

 

read the report

 

About the CX Company

The CX Company help leading Irish CX companies accelerate their delivery of
CX Excellence to their customers and staff.

Our CX best practice is designed from robust Irish customer insights and benchmarks along with global best practice.

We have a proud track record of helping companies differentiate their business to dominate competitors, lock in your customers for longer, motivate customers to become inspired advocates and empower your staff to deliver CX Excellence consistently across all touchpoints.

www.thecxcompany.com

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The New 2019 Alternatives & Marketing Institute Salary, Market Insights And Sentiment Survey

Posted By The Marketing Institute & Alternatives, Thursday 17 October 2019

Salary Survey 2019

Brexit Impact Hits & Senior Gender Pay Gap Widens to €17,500

Double digit percentage salary increases / Multi-nationals pay better

Flexible working even more popular with Flex Generation

“The reality of Brexit and its possible impact, the emergence of a hyper competitive market for talent, the dominance of digital spend, fluctuating consumer sentiment, widening disparity between what men and women are paid for doing the same job and the enduring popularity of flexible working are some of the key factors influencing the marketing industry in Ireland”. That’s according to Sandra Lawler, Founder Director of Alternatives (www.alternatives.ie), Ireland’s No1 Marketing and Customer Talent solutions specialists commenting on the new Alternatives & Marketing Institute of Ireland 2019 Salary, Market Insights & Sentiment Survey, which provides a unique insight into Ireland’s Marketing industry. 

Now in its sixth year and with over 1,000 respondents from the marketing, digital and customer community(see Editor’s Note), it takes an in-depth look at preparedness for Brexit, differences by company sector, size, career level and gender in areas including market sentiment, salaries and benefits in addition to the role and focus of the marketing function.

KEY SURVEY FINDINGS:

Brexit, Salaries, Talent Trends, Flexible Working + Benefits Gap, Marketing Spend + Investment and Sentiment

Brexit

  • Overall, sentiment is 53% negative with 14% uncertain.
  • The sectors most negative about Brexit impact are Motor 94%, Retail 82% and FMCG 81%. The sectors with a more positive or benign viewpoint are Ecommerce 25%, IT/Tech 29% and Gaming 29%.
  • The most prepared sectors for Brexit are Government, Retail and Gaming while the least prepared include Agency, Hotel / Leisure and Manufacturing.

 

Salaries

  • Despite a commitment to pay equality, the gender pay differential in Irish firms remains significant. It increases the more senior the career level, including on a like for like role basis, with male directors for example getting paid on average €17,500 more than their female counterparts for, on average, the same role and/or level.
  • Also, the gap in salaries, rather than narrowing, has instead increased in the last year, particularly at head of level (gap is +11% this year, vs +8% last year) and manager level (gap is +7% this year, vs +3% last year).
  • On the Benefits front, there’s also a gender gap with males accruing more benefits (car, bonuses, healthcare, share options etc) than their female counterparts in permanent, flexible and remote working. The only benefits exception is in part time working where females out-pace males.       
  • Overall though, the picture that emerges is that females should seek - and get – benefits parity. 
  • Overall, marketing is a well remunerated industry. Salaries range from support level at an average of €34,000 base salary (+13% vs LY) to Directors at an average of €132,000 (+8% vs LY).
  • On an average basis, the most lucrative roles by level are Marketing Director €141,000, Head of Online €109,000 and Head of Marketing €95,000               
  • In a hyper competitive market for talent which puts upward pressure on salaries, 2 in 3 got a salary increase last year.                           
  • Again, on average, multi-nationals pay better than Irish companies and larger companies pay better than smaller companies.

 

Talent Trends

  • Issues with engagement continue, although somewhat improved vs last year.
  •  53% plan to stay with their company for two years or less and only 59% would recommend their employer to a friend.

 

Flexible Working

  • The drive to embrace flexibility, both to compete in the market using flexible talent and as means to engage employees by offering flexible working options, will build in the coming years.
  •  With this “Flex Generation”, both females and males rate flexible working as one of their lead factors of engagement. 75% of respondents get offered some flexible working option, and contrary to popular opinion, male respondents get offered more options to work remotely or with flexible hours than their female counterparts. 61% of males and 52% of females can work remotely, 49% of males and 46% of females can avail of flexible hours. 15% of female respondents can work part time (i.e. a 4-day week for example) vs 8% of males. 

Bernie Keogh, MD of Alternatives said: “As the business that pioneered flexible working in the marketing industry in Ireland in 2000, providing an “alternative way of accessing great talent”, the era of flexibility has truly arrived.

In the battle for talent, 70% of respondent companies use Interim Managers and contractors and one in three respondents have themselves contracted or freelanced before. In addition, the desire to work flexibility has never been greater amongst the flex generation of men and women. An organisation that can respond to this will win the battle for talent and have a more engaged workforce.” 

 

Marketing Spend + Investment

  • Respondents report working with tight resources, with most Marketing departments having teams of under 10 and budgets of under €1m.
  • The dominance of Digital continues in terms of budget allocations with Digital (including Content and Social) at 58%, Events at 40% and Digital PPC/SEO at 38% of spend. Meanwhile Press / Radio and Outdoor advertising has just 32%.
  • With digital priorities, there is now an-over focus on short term tactical spend to the detriment of long-term brand building.            
  • In addition, 61% of respondents said marketing was perceived as a strategic, revenue generating partner. However, 19% felt it was perceived as a support function.

 

Sentiment

  • Customer sentiment in the last year was strong but less robust than previous years. 
  •  The future trading outlook is still positive overall, but declining.                                                                                                                                  

Tom Trainor, Chief Executive, the Marketing Institute of Ireland said: “The challenges facing the marketing profession in 2020 and beyond are well flagged in this new survey. The period ahead will provide marketers with the opportunity to demonstrate the real value of our profession to business. The strategic importance of Marketing has never been more central to economic health, as our members seek to consolidate existing local markets and to look outwards globally to explore new international opportunities. Learning and development needs to be a constant feature of life for all marketing practitioners if we are to realise the potential of our profession.

Bernie Keogh, Managing Director, Alternatives concluded: “Once again, the diverse range of survey results all point to how essential it is for companies to successfully compete in an increasingly complex and fast paced talent market.  A good company to work in, is one with a strong vision and purpose, a positive culture, good career opportunities, flexible working, investment in training and coaching, as well as good salary and benefits.”

 

KEY FINDINGS - ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

1.     Customer sentiment in the last year was strong but less robust than previous years.

83% thought customer sentiment in the last year was positive (35% considered it the same and 48% better).

This declined vs last year’s survey, when 93% found sentiment positive. In addition, 15% found sentiment a little worse (vs just 6% the year prior). 

This marks the first halt in a long run of positivity, which has lasted several years and indeed since we began carrying out this survey in 2014.

2.     Future trading outlook still positive overall, but Brexit is a major threat.

The future trading outlook for the next 12 months remains positive overall (75% feel it will be the same or will improve) but 1 in 4 feel trading conditions in their market will deteriorate vs just 7% at the same time last year.

Those most positive in outlook include the construction, telco, NFP, tech, logistics, healthcare and professional services sectors.  Those with the most negative outlook include the motor, agri, government, manufacturing and pharma sectors.                                                                                             

3.     This is due in a large part to Brexit, which is seen as a negative force where the level of preparedness not as high as needed.

53% feel it will have a negative or very negative impact vs 36% LY. 27% are neutral and just 5% feel it will have a positive impact. Those sectors that feel most impacted by Brexit specifically are those in the motor sector (92% negative), retail (82%), FMCG, drinks, government orgs, travel and manufacturing. Those least negative include e-commerce, tech, gaming, media and education.

However, at this late stage, only 30% feel their organisations are well or very well prepared for Brexit and in particular those in government, retail, gaming, financial services and professional services. Most (45%) feel they are somewhat prepared and those in smaller companies and those in the agency, hotel/leisure, manufacturing, not for profit and healthcare sectors feel least prepared.

 

4.     There’s a competitive market for talent, putting upward pressure on salaries. 2 in 3 got a salary increase last year.

It’s a very competitive market for talent and this saw increased pressure on salaries. Average salaries by level increased from 3% to 13% in the last year. 64% of all respondents got a salary increase, of which 1 in 5 got an increase of 6% or more. In Alternatives’ experience this was particularly evident at the early to mid-career level, where demand is being driven by the well-funded tech giants.

 

5.     The gender pay differential remains significant while the gap in salaries has increased in the last year particularly at mid to senior level - despite public commitment to pay equality. The gap increases the more senior the career level, including on a like for like role basis.

Although at career entry stage female respondents are 4% higher paid, this soon changes, and the pay differential increases the more senior the career stage. For instance, a male director will get an average of €17,500 more than a female director (+14% and vs. €15,000 LY). A male at head of level gets paid 11% more than his female counterpart, a manager 7% more and a practitioner level +4% more.

 

6.     All of these are greater gaps than those recorded last year. (Head of level +11% TY vs +8% LY and Manager level +8% TY vs 4% LY).

In addition, and perhaps as a result of better pay and benefits, male respondents are more engaged, feel more secure and are more likely to recommend their employer to a friend.

Sandra Lawler, survey author and founder director of Alternatives said: “Again this year, despite public commitments by companies, the 2019 survey finds that male respondents are paid more on average and for the same roles than their female counterparts at almost all levels from practitioner level upwards. The salary gap increases the higher the more senior the career level, with male directors for example getting paid on average €17,500 more than their female counterpart, for on average the same role and/or level.                                                                                                                                                                                                  

 “The gap also increased last year, rather than decreased, despite public and company awareness of the gender gap issue and the need to address it and is particularly dispiriting”.

7.     Benefits are much as LY and male respondents continue to get more benefits across the board than their female counterparts.

Benefits are much as last year. The top benefits enjoyed are mobile phone, bonuses, contributory pension, remote and flexible working and healthcare. Those working in large companies, in particular non-Irish owned multinationals, get more benefits, in particular in relation to healthcare, pensions, bonuses and share options.

Males get more benefits across all benefit categories than females, in particular relating to car allowances, cars, bonuses and remote working and also this year, flexible hours. The only area that females benefit more from is part time working (e.g. 3-4-day week, mornings etc).

8.     Marketing is a well remunerated industry. Salaries ranges from support level at an average of €34,000 base salary (+13% vs LY) to Directors at an average of €132,000 (+8% vs LY).This remains a well remunerated industry. See average and increase vs average LY:

 

Career Level

Survey Range

Average TY

% Change

Support

€25-50K

€34K

+13%

 

 

 

 

 

Practitioner

€40-80K

€51K

+3%

Manager

€50-90K

€70K

+4%

Head of

€70-140k

€100K

+5%

Director

€80-180K

€132K

+8%

 

9.     Issues with engagement continue, although somewhat improved vs last year.

Engagement has improved somewhat on last year when it was at an all-time low. 59% now rate their engagement at 7 out of 10 or more, up on just 55% last year. Male respondents are also more engaged than females (65% vs 55%).  Despite salary increases, good benefits and security in their roles, there is still a high level of disengagement (21% of respondents).                                                                                                                                                

10.  We are in the era of the flex generation. The drive to embrace flexibility both to compete in the market using flexible talent and as means to engage employees by offering flexible working options has never been more pronounced.

 

11.  The industry works with tight resources, with majority in teams of under 10 and budgets of under €1m.

Resources remain relatively tight with 60% having marketing teams of 10 or less and 53% budgets of €1m or less. Larger companies, multinationals and consumer facing businesses such as drinks, gaming, e-commerce, telco, retail and financial services have greater resources.

12.  With the era of digital there is now an over focus on short term tactical spend to the detriment of long-term brand building.

Peter Field and Les Binet's now-famous 60/40 ratio rule of thumb was that marketers should spend approximately 60% of their budget on long term brand building and 40% on short term sales activation. In our survey only 7% claimed to be dedicating 60% of their budget to long term growth. One third of the respondents were dedicating 20% or less, a worrying finding.                                                                                                                                                                                                    

13.  61% of respondents said marketing was perceived as a strategic, revenue generating partner. But 19% feel it is seen as a support function (vs 22% LY).

39% said it was perceived as strategic and is also represented on the board. Those that are considered most strategic are those more deeply embedded across the organisation in customer, commercial and product/service and strategy development. Hence there is a need to engage and influence across the organisation across these areas and to demonstrate effectiveness.

  

EDITORS NOTE

Survey Participation:

  • Survey carried out from the end of June to the end of August 2019
  • 1,015 respondents from the marketing, digital, data and customer community
  • 64% female, 36% male respondents
  • 83% offices located in Dublin region
  • Small, medium & large businesses
  • 42% multinationals, 58% Irish owned
  • 25+ Sectors covered                                                                                                                                                                                                           

About Alternatives 

The Alternatives Group is an award-winning, dynamic talent consultancy specialising in all things marketing, digital & customer.  Operating for 20 years, Alternatives are deep specialists in the key disciplines which unlock growth for business and careers.

Alternatives for growth include the Alternatives Flexible Panel, Executive Search & Recruitment Solutions and Consultancy, Training & Coaching solutions.

Alternatives also works with the best marketing, digital and customer professionals, helping them build unparalleled careers.

Alternatives has a proven track record with clients across all sectors, from tech, financial services, professional services, FMCG, agri, amongst others.

 www.alternatives.ie

 

About The Marketing Institute

The Marketing Institute is the professional body for Ireland's marketing people. It exists “to enable marketers to build great brands and great careers”. It does this by sharing best practice, insights and expert content, building the community of marketers, and aiding marketers in career progression. The three themes of content, community and career underpin all Institute activities. The Marketing Institute also owns and operates the All Ireland Marketing Awards, the CMO Summit, and DMX Dublin, Ireland's largest marketing conference.

 

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