IBM and Aviva top study that finds link between digital marketing and profitability

IBM and Aviva top study that finds link between digital marketing and profitability

According to recent research, there is a clear link between digital marketing and profitability, and US firms outperform the rest of the world.

The LEWIS Global Marketing Engagement Index for 2019 analysed the top 300 companies in the Forbes Global 2000 list. Using a proprietary methodology, known as the Marketing Engagement Tracker (MET), the study analysed the success of the marketing mix on overall profitability and the report concluded there is a clear link between the two.

Globally, IBM has topped the chart, knocking Microsoft off the top spot for marketing sophistication in last year’s study.

The best performing businesses, based on Forbes, were stronger at digital marketing, earned and social media and while the older companies scored higher than the younger firms overall, the latter had better digital marketing and website optimization scores.

There was a significant gap between the margins and profitability of low-scoring companies and higher-performing brands. An average improvement of five margin points separated the high performers.

The study found that across the whole sample, the average margin was 12.7%, which translated into profits of $6.9 billion across the global 300.

Key findings

Americas and Europe Middle East and Africa vs Asia-Pacific

The LEWIS Global Marketing Index found brands in the Americas and the Europe, Middle East, Africa region outperformed brands from Asia-Pacific. The use and adoption of autonomous tools, such as chatbots, was low despite poor response times across multiple channels. And half of the 300 brands appear not to be using marketing automation.

The study also discovered that the bigger the company the slower it is to respond to enquiries, especially across email and social; yet the older companies achieved better response rates to enquiries across phone, social and email.

Of the top 300 brands, 57% are not using paid ads to serve specific marketing campaign information to drive traffic.

The methodology

The LEWIS MET methodology analyzes marketing across fifty categories, including earned media, personalization, social media, responsiveness, user experience and website security.