The Marketing Executives Networking Group, an almost 1700 member organization of leading marketers who are at a VP-level or above in their organizations, has issued the results of its first annual survey of Top Marketing Trends for 2008. The survey of MENG members, conducted by Anderson Analytics, focused on top marketing concepts, buzz words, global areas of opportunity, targeted customer demographics, as well as the books that marketers look to for inspiration and growth opportunity.
While the marketers weighed in on many marketing concepts a few key areas emerged.
Marketing basics (60 percent “Very Important”) which include specific concepts such as customer satisfaction, customer retention, segmentation, brand loyalty and ROI were of greatest interest. Interestingly, Search Engine Optimization (42 percent) had relatively wide appeal, and cut across marketers in all fields. “Green Marketing” (32 percent) was another important emerging concept and it was identified as the trendiest marketing buzzword.
In regard to Global Issues, China is viewed as the region with the best future opportunity (52 percent); India is a distant second (20 percent). Few marketers saw other regions such as Eastern Europe, Western Europe, Latin America, Brazil, Russia, and Mexico, as comparable opportunities. In terms of another important global issue, Out-Sourcing/Off-Shoring, the majority of marketers (77 percent) reported that their companies do not off-shore any part of the marketing function. Half of senior marketers are not in favor of off-shoring any part of the marketing function, while just under a quarter view it favorably.
When asked about the most important customer demographics senior marketing executives rank Baby Boomers highest with 88 percent ranking them as either very important or somewhat important. What may be surprising is the fact that Gen X (86 percent), Hispanics (86 percent), Women (85 percent) and Gen Y (84 percent) are catching up to Boomers as customer targets.
Senior-level Marketing Executives read avidly to stay abreast of information and gain insights for their business. The most popular books are not necessarily the most recently published given that Good to Great, The World is Flat, and Blink were the top three most recently read books. In terms of all time favorite business book ever read, three in five executives were eager to make a recommendation to their fellow marketers. Topping the list were: Good to Great, Positioning, and 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
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