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October 11, 2011

Marketers overwhelmed by customer data in social media: IBM survey

Over 80% of CMOs still rely on traditional market research to build marketing strategies

By CBR Staff Writer

A new IBM study has revealed that marketers feel overwhelmed by the growing volume of customer data on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.

According to a Reuters, the study found that though the marketers belivve that the data is important, they consider themselves ill-equipped to harness it.

The IBM study found that only 26% of chief marketing officers track blogs and just 40% track any online communications. Importantly, the study revealed that 82% of the marketers still rely on traditional market research to build marketing strategies.

While social networking site Facebook has over 800 million users, microblogging site Twitter users send about 200 million tweets per day.

"The perfect solution is to serve each consumer individually. The problem? There are 7 billion of them," said one CMO.

The study found that it is only a few top consumer brands, such as Coca-Cola, Nike and Starbucks that are using high-profile social media campaigns effectively to find out what their customers want and to communicate with them.

"We have entered the age of the smarter consumer," IBM marketing executive Marcel Holsheimer said, according to Reuters.

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"Marketing is going to become much more an automated and software play than it was in the past. This is why IBM is now making the investment in this space."

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