Creating A Marketing Analytics Strategy? 17 Challenges To Overcome

Developing a successful marketing analytics strategy is a challenging, but often crucial, task for many businesses. While collecting vast amounts of marketing data can be a hurdle in itself, plenty of obstacles can prevent a company from fully leveraging that data in a way that meaningfully aligns with its strategic goals and utilizes the right tools and metrics.

Below, 17 Forbes Technology Council members explore some of the most common challenges businesses face in creating an effective marketing analytics strategy. By identifying and addressing these challenges head-on, businesses can leverage their marketing analytics to drive more strategic, data-based decisions and achieve healthy, sustainable growth.

Lack Of Data-Savvy Marketing Leaders

The hunt for marketing leaders who can transform a complex and ever-expanding data landscape into actionable insights is an ongoing challenge. These unicorns, though scarce, are the key to unlocking sustainable business growth. As marketing’s influence expands, its impact will be felt across all aspects of a company, from sales pipelines to employee morale and talent acquisition. – Neil LamptonTIAG

Siloed Reporting

Organizations often split their focus, with marketing reviewing top-of-funnel performance while sales teams focus on the bottom of the funnel. Purposeful analytics strategies bring the two together, aligning marketing and sales with analytics that cover the full funnel and empowering both teams to better collaborate on meeting their most important metric—revenue. – Eron KellyInovalon

Data Overload

One common challenge is data overload. To overcome it, focus on relevant metrics aligned with business goals, invest in data quality, utilize advanced analytics tools for meaningful insights, and foster collaboration between marketing and analytics teams. – Rudy ShoushanyDxTalks

The Assumption That Things Are Not Measurable

I think the biggest challenge now is the assumption that things are not measurable. With today’s identity and cookie challenges, many vendors are preying on the confusion to make it sound as if there isn’t a way to solve the data gaps. This couldn’t be further from the truth, but it does require thinking differently. – Bill BrunoCelebrus

Data Fragmentation

Businesses face the challenge of adapting fragmented data sources across different platforms and devices. Investing in specific, yet robust, data aggregation and integration tools such as generative artificial intelligence enables marketers to extract insights across sources. Additionally, prioritizing mobile-specific key performance indicators, such as app engagement metrics and conversion rates, can help guide strategic decision-making and resource allocation. – Katie MaddingAdjust

Unclear Attribution

Attribution systems are imperative for today’s businesses, with immense martech stacks muddying the waters of measurement and attribution. To ensure that business leaders are making sound decisions with analytics and that the effectiveness of tools such as GenAI is measurable, marketers should educate leadership (including their CFO) on attribution systems and their impacts on the bottom line. – Assaf BaciuPersado

Limited Actionable Insights

Marketing ROI suffers without actionable data insights. Siloed data and limited data expertise hinder effective analytics strategies. Marketing teams should be empowered to translate data into actionable insights through upskilling and collaboration. – Miles WardSADA

Insufficient Data And Limited Tools

To address challenges such as insufficient data, unawareness of key metrics and limited analytics tools, businesses should invest in advanced tracking tools, boost data literacy among teams and utilize platforms for comprehensive data collection. Leveraging AI and machine learning can automate data analysis, offering insights into evolving customer behaviors and empowering businesses to adapt swiftly to market changes. – Shobha PatilSankey Business Solutions Pvt. Ltd.

A Lack Of Focus

A lack of focus in identifying key metrics can hinder your ability to meet your specific business needs over time. Instead of focusing on generic metrics, you need to know the top three metrics for your business and ensure that all your marketing efforts revolve around them. – Nitesh SinhaSacumen

AI Silos

Brand relevancy and intimacy increasingly require responsible personalization of experiences across owned, operated and paid channels. As AI solutions drive the scale of these experiences, it can also result in rapidly scaling poor experiences. AI silos across organizations often result in disjointed and inconsistent experiences, which can leave customers feeling as if you don’t really know them. – Neerav VyasTredence

Tracing Sales Back To Marketing Efforts

One common challenge in creating a purposeful marketing analytics strategy is accurately attributing marketing efforts to sales outcomes. To overcome this, businesses should use multi-touch attribution models that consider various customer interactions throughout the sales cycle. – Stoyan MitovDreamix

Choosing Confirmation Bias Over Clean Data

This is most often a “people and process” problem. People are guilty of confirmation bias instead of using data that only supports the marketing objectives. Before starting any such project, perform a thorough data cleaning and validation process, understand the strategy’s parameters and goals and ensure you are not contaminating good data with unfounded thoughts. – Will ConawayNTT Data

Uncertain End Goals

Often, the water gets muddied by uncertainty about the main end goal. Do we want this marketing campaign to drive brand awareness? New leads? Clicks or engagement? Depending on the goal, teams can adjust their marketing analytics to focus on tracking the success of the main objective rather than looking at every individual metric available. – Dustin VerdinZipline Logistics

Undefined Attribution Signals

The biggest pitfall companies run into is the misclassification of marketing attribution. Without high-quality attribution signals, often stemming from deep-funnel user interaction, determining an effective marketing strategy is challenging. A proper definition of attribution signals will provide higher-quality performance insights. – Anton UmnovHelika

Unacknowledged Blind Spots

Frequently, businesses run into trouble by not acknowledging the limitations of marketing data collection. At the strategic level, leaders must operate with an awareness of what challenges in consumer behavior, data collection or potential for fraud will create blind spots in analytics. Accounting for those limits in decision-making avoids creating frustrations or false conclusions. – Dave RosenWimo Games, Inc.

‘Perfection Paralysis’

Don’t let “perfection paralysis” stall marketing analytics. Overanalyzing and delaying decisions due to a lack of absolute certainty leads to missed opportunities. Embrace a growth mindset—view analytics as an ongoing experiment. Test, track, adapt and learn from failures. Focus on action and continuous improvement, not unattainable perfection. – Ankit VirmaniGoogle Inc.

Changing Consumer Behavior

One challenge is the variance in marketing channels and consumer behavior over time. Companies must track their marketplace and periodically reflect on and adapt their analytics strategies to market changes. This can be done by staying updated on emerging trends, investing in agile analytics tools and methodologies and fostering a culture of experimentation and learning within the marketing team. – Parul Batraneuro42

Previously published on Forbes.