Acxiom Provides Insights to Brands Looking to In-House Media

Proprietary research with independent research firm confirms in-housing as a priority for nearly 50% of marketing decision-makers

Acxiom®, the customer intelligence company whose data-driven solutions create business growth by enabling better customer experiences, today announced the findings of a commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Acxiom, evaluating the shift toward bringing more media tasks in-house and the drivers, challenges, and benefits of doing so. The study, titled Gaining Digital Media Control and Transparency, highlights a strong desire by marketing decision-makers to bring more media capabilities in-house. Nearly 50% of those surveyed said it is currently a top marketing objective, and 40% expect it will remain a top priority in the coming years. The study also identifies the most common barriers to success, and details five critical components for assessing in-housing readiness.

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“Responsible marketers want to deliver more meaningful marketing and better brand experiences, but the task is becoming more difficult”

The study finds that the biggest barriers to in-housing media are predominantly internal. The cultural and operational shifts that are foundational for success were noted by respondents as both a current and future challenge.

The study also highlights data ownership as the most realized benefit thus far by nearly half of those surveyed. While 38% of respondents expected data ownership to be a benefit to in-housing, 48% said data ownership delivered more benefit than anticipated.

“Responsible marketers want to deliver more meaningful marketing and better brand experiences, but the task is becoming more difficult,” said Chad Engelgau, CEO at Acxiom. “Customer preferences change, technology capabilities rapidly advance, and privacy regulations mean marketers are held more accountable for the data that fuels their marketing and media operations. While many marketers are opting to bring media capabilities in-house for more control and visibility, doing so is best viewed as a journey over time. Every successful journey requires a roadmap, and this research can help marketers take a strategic and cost-effective approach to their in-housing journey.”

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While most brands are eager to gain control and transparency of their digital media, understanding where to start and what skills, technology and processes are needed to do this are less clear. The research outlines the key pillars that impact a company’s readiness to bring media in-house – strategy, process, people, data, and technology – and emphasizes that bringing media in-house doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing proposition.

Three quarters of marketers surveyed reported plans to include two or more partners in their media in-housing transition to help create the needed foundation of data, skills, and technology. Nearly half of those surveyed would like agencies to share a significant responsibility for key media tasks, and less than one third want to completely manage media channels on their own.

“The in-housing journey requires substantial effort, and partner support both accelerates the path to in-housing readiness and provides key support throughout the journey,” said Engelgau. “You don’t have to do everything yourself to gain greater control and transparency into your media efforts. With a strategic approach – and strategic partnerships – you can create the media in-housing plan that works for your business.”

Acxiom’s customer intelligence drives success for many of the world’s most respected brands, who every year renew 95% of their contracts with Acxiom.

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