Successful Marketers Display Agility with their Budgets

November 11, 2022

This article is included in these additional categories:

Agency Business | Business of Marketing | Internal Collaboration | Marketing Budgets

Some marketers are staying ahead of the game by virtue of a strong agility with budgets, according to research from Kantar and Google. In fact, almost two-thirds (64%) of so-called “leading marketers” report that their marketing organization is “extremely budget agile,” compared to just one-fifth of “average marketers.”

To arrive at these conclusions Kantar and Google surveyed 575 senior marketers across 8 countries from March to June 2022. “Leading marketers” are defined as “those who not only outperformed peers in their industry, but also outperformed internal expectations, and reported revenue growth of 10% or more in the past year.” These marketers represented 35% of the survey sample. The rest were labeled “average marketers.”

What’s clear from the segmentation is that leading marketers are much more frequently tinkering with their budgets for digital channels. In fact, about one-fifth (21%) make adjustments on a daily basis, 3 times the share (7%) of average marketers. Moreover 3 in 10 do so weekly, compared to 21% of others. As such, half (51%) of leading marketers adjust their digital channel budgets weekly or more frequently, almost double the proportion (28%) of average marketers who do so at that speed.

This has been seen as a factor in Agile marketing in other research: 64% of Agile marketers report that the adoption of Agile has led them to change their budgeting approaches, with the most common change involving the budget being dynamically reallocated on an ongoing basis.

Part of being able to make these quick adjustments is having to deal with less hierarchy. Compared to average marketers, leading marketers are more likely to have junior roles such as Manager or below involved in media budget decisions, while being less likely to need the involvement of a VP or SVP. In fact, 58% are able to secure approval for budget changes of 20% or more within a week, compared to 45% of the rest of the sample.

No wonder, then, that 73% of leading marketers said it’s very easy to increase budgets for channels that outperform goals or expectations, compared to just 28% of average marketers.

Other Survey Highlights:

  • 9 in 10 leading marketers allocate budget to advertising experiments, versus two-thirds (67%) of average marketers.
  • Almost half (47%) say it is “very easy” to scale experiments, way above the 6% of the rest of the sample.
  • Leading marketers are more likely than average marketers to leverage agency partners for overall marketing strategies and less likely than average marketers to turn to them for media planning/buys and campaign management/execution.
  • With collaboration/alignment the key component of agile marketing, leading marketers are primarily fostering collaboration across channels by modifying planning and budget processes for cross-channel collaboration (59%) and by creating more cross-channel team touchpoints (56%).

For more, check out the survey results here.


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