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Indian Marketers embrace change and prioritise the customer: Salesforce Research

Salesforce , the global leader in CRM, released the seventh edition of its ‘State of Marketing’ report based on a survey of over 8,200 marketing leaders worldwide. The report is focused on understanding the shifts in marketing strategies, priorities, challenges and the trajectory of marketing’s digital transformation future with the recent economic and social changes. 

Key findings include: 

  • Marketers Embrace Change with Optimism: Emerging from a time of great upheaval, marketers are focused on a future of innovation and real-time engagement. Top three priorities for marketers in India are: Engaging with customers in real time; Creating a cohesive customer journey across channels and devices and Improving marketing ROI/attribution and improving collaboration. 68% of Indian marketers expect revenue growth at their organizations over the next 12 to 18 months.
  • As Customers Go Digital, Marketing Steps Up: After years’ worth of changes in customer behavior occurring over the course of months, marketers are accelerating their digital transformation. In India 91% marketers say their digital engagement strategy has completely changed or somewhat changed since the before pandemic. 
  • Collaboration Drives the Market-from-Anywhere Era: No longer tied to offices, a distributed workforce is reevaluating how they engage not only customers, but each other. 79% of marketing organizations in India have adopted new work collaboration technology due to the pandemic. 
  • Marketing Is Spelled D-A-T-A : Data empowers marketers to deliver the trusted, personalized engagement customers expect, but managing it is only becoming more complex. The average number of data sources used by marketers in India is expected to reach 32 by 2022. 
  • Budgets allocations continue to evolve: Majority of budgets in India go to advertising across B2C (25%) and B2B (20%) businesses. Events and sponsorships are deprioritized getting the least amount of budgets  across B2C (15%) B2B (13%) businesses. 

Challenges are afoot, though, with 73% of Indian marketers agreeing that customer expectations are more difficult to meet than they were a year ago. To adapt, marketers are leaning into the digital transformations they had initiated prior to the pandemic. In fact, 90% of Indian marketers say the pandemic changed their digital engagement strategy, and 88% say it changed their marketing channel mix.

Prioritizing things like technology, content, and skilling people for this digital first era will help marketers stay ahead. In India 61% of marketers rate employee training they receive as excellent, in comparison to the global average of 44%. 51% of these professionals choose to specialise in Data analytics and Content Marketing 

Yashdeep Vaishnav, RVP, Digital Experience, Salesforce India, said, “Over the course of a little more than a year, marketers in India have navigated changes in customer behavior that normally occur over years. The insights in this year’s State of Marketing report provide a good benchmark for what’s changed, what’s consistent, and where the art and science of marketing goes from here.”

The trends revealed in the State of Marketing report were collected from a survey of over 8,200 marketing leaders across 37 countries and six continents, including 300 from India. 

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