Profile: Sir Charlie Mayfield

John Lewis Partnership Chairman

CIM: 'Marketers' confidence at 12-month high'

Marketers’ confidence in the performance and prospects for their business is five times higher than 12 months ago as improvements in the wider economy fuel optimism but doubts remain over their ability to influence colleagues, according to a report by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM).  

Salary survey

The professional body made the claims in its latest Confidence Monitor quarterly data, revealing that marketers’ overall confidence increased by almost 12 points since April – representing an increase by a factor of five since this time last year. 

The CIM, which represents over 40,000 marketers, also claimed the study reveals a more upbeat mood among the surveyed marketers over their career prospects compared to 12 months ago. 

The CIM study comes amid better news about the UK economy. Business lobbying group the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has revised up its forecast for the UK economy, predicting growth between 1-2 per cent in 2013, and 2.2 per cent in 2014. Elsewhere, GfK NOP’s respected consumer sentiment index reached its highest level since 2009 in August. 

However, despite the improving outlook, the CIM survey, which quizzed over 1,000 CIM members, also revealed that over a third (40 per cent) of marketers working in larger companies saw a “high risk to their job security” over the next 12 months. 

This gloomier outlook was further accompanied by the finding that 55 per cent of respondents felt that their insights into consumer behaviour were not proactively used by their colleagues in the early stages of business planning. 

This is despite over 70 per cent of marketers reporting senior executive buy-in and support for the discipline. CIM says businesses are “missing a trick” when it comes to leveraging their marketing department’s customer insights teams.

Anne Godfrey, CEO of the CIM, says: “Marketers have weathered the storm and the green shoots are beginning to flower. However for this to be translated into tangible and sustainable growth, businesses must embrace marketing and customer insight as a valuable contribution to their planning and strategy. 

“It is the job of marketing to translate what matters to consumers to companies so they can respond to consumer demand while increasing their bottom line.”

The latest Bellwether study from the Institue of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA), taken from insights shared by over 300 senior marketers from top brands, also revealed decision makers were more confident about the prospects of their company. A sign of this was that 22 per cent of those surveyed said they had increased their media spend in the three months to 30 June, compared to 15 per cent cutting spend.

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