Pepperjam Research on Marketers’ Innovation Divide and Influencer Misconceptions   

May 02, 2017

Pepperjam, a full service performance marketing company, revealed insights and contradictions around marketers’ challenges and priorities. Conducted at Adobe Summit 2017, Pepperjam polled 400 senior marketers and decision makers to identify what issues are top of mind and affecting budget spend. The results reveal a notable tension among technology investments and expectations, and channel strategy and objectives. 

Technology is one of the best vehicles to enable creativity and innovation. While most marketers agree with this statement, there is a strain around marketers’ relationship with technology.  The No. 1 response from 2017 Pepperjam Adobe Summit Survey focused on the value of innovative technology, however, only 7% of senior marketers prioritize creating a creative culture. 

There is a clear emphasis on technology investments to drive innovation forward, yet little investment into developing a creative culture that encourages employees to put this technology into practice in truly innovative ways. Misunderstood Influencers: marketers place great emphasis on influencer marketing but lack awareness regarding its many forms. 

Influencer marketing takes on many shapes and forms, and an integral part of influencer marketing is affiliate marketing, by which an online retailer compensates a publisher or blogger for traffic and sales generated from its referrals. Affiliate marketing often serves as a stepping-stone to more robust influencer marketing programs, and can contribute up to 15% additional online revenue for brands. While marketers place a high emphasis on influencer marketing, they neglect affiliate marketing as part of this mix. Nearly a third of marketers invest or prioritize influencer marketing (26%) but only 4% invest or prioritize affiliate marketing. 

This discrepancy means affiliate marketing is a under-utilized channel and potentially unknown, warranting a need for greater education around the various strategies supporting influencer marketing. Forrester predicts by 2020, US ecommerce sales will hit $500 billion—and?affiliate marketing will affect?$70 billion?in?sales.

Marketers have more technology and sophisticated solutions than ever before to help them improve messaging, targeting and consumer engagement. However, there remains the challenge of “too much data” or rather, “not optimizing existing data.” More than a third of marketers (36%) want to improve data insights to better understand how and when best to connect with a consumer.

While innovative technology investments are a top priority among marketers, resulting data points remain burdensome. Regardless of the marketing technology stack within an organization, the focus is clear – to remain dedicated to better understanding and engaging with people along their customer journey.