The news: A new Insider Intelligence study finds senior marketing leaders are somewhat optimistic about their fortunes in 2023—while simultaneously realizing they will need to shift priorities and embrace agility.
Economic outlook: In terms of their personal outlook for the US economy in 2023, a plurality (43.5%) of the 177 leaders surveyed expect GDP to start to rise; 27.0% expect it to stay the same; and 22.6% expect it to slow but avoid a recession. Only 7% expect a mild or deep recession.
A hazy economic outlook and increased uncertainty have forced marketers to become more nimble than ever and adjust their strategic plans.
Adapt or die: Given signs of economic slowness in the US, marketers are looking to implement a number of changes in the next six months:
Nearly half (48.6%) are planning to reduce the amount they spend with outside agencies, with 35% saying they’ve already done so.
Marketing priorities: The most oft-cited priority functional areas for the leaders’ marketing departments next year (with a maximum of five selectable and 14 options presented) are marketing systems/technology (38.4%), digital transformation (36.2%), advertising and customer insights/data (33.9% apiece), and customer loyalty (33.3%).
Channel investments: The five customer touchpoints that will be most critical for marketing departments in 2023 are the same as this year: Social media advertising (61.6%), Display and online video advertising (52.5%), Mobile app (43.5%), Website (40.7%), and Email (33.3%).
Our take: Uncertainty has forced marketers to become increasingly agile and pivot on the fly—but they’re also leaning into what works.