Columbia, MD, September 12, 2023

Merkle Customer Engagement Report (CER) Finds 93% of Marketing Teams are Misaligned on Technology Use, Offers Guidance for Better Collaboration & Efficiency

Report urges marketing and IT to work together as technology tools permeate customer experience marketing and loyalty practices


Merkle, dentsu's leading technology-enabled, data-driven customer experience management (CXM) company, has released the 2023 Customer Engagement Report (CER) focused on insights and sentiment from marketers on key topics in the industry. The report explores the impact of technology on marketing – how new tools are helping workflows, where misalignment between people and tech is happening, and how teams can work together to increase efficiency.

As the customer experience (CX) landscape continues to evolve, consumers expect marketers to do more to earn their loyalty – and marketers continue to implement new solutions to keep up. However, Merkle’s CER found that 93 percent of marketing teams feel misaligned in using at least one of their technology or software tools – proving teams are amping up investments in tech without aligning on their intended use and goals. The report outlines how brands can improve alignment through greater collaboration between IT and marketing teams when evaluating and purchasing new solutions, onboarding the technology, and training new users. 

“Mass-produced messaging no longer resonates with consumers; they expect personalization and one-to-one relationship building. As a result, it is crucial to deliver curated, personally relevant experiences across touchpoints, and this is not possible without technology and streamlined workflows,” said Courtney Trudeau, SVP, technology strategy lead at Merkle. “As marketing teams increase their investment in experience platforms, they need to be aligned on these new tools from the start. Efficiency and utilization from the get-go will create better results over time as the solution is implemented.”

Additionally, the CER underscores the need for earlier collaboration between IT and marketing, as IT professionals have more insight into security, safety, and usability. Delays in decision-making account for 48 percent of all misalignment on marketing teams, according to the report, and increased collaboration with IT can help bridge this gap for brands and marketers alike.

“Delays are usually caused by a lack of buy-in from both the CMO and CIO. Kicking off these conversations with everyone at the table from the start can help ensure teams are as efficient as possible,” said Trudeau. “Evolving the decision-making model from a siloed process to a more collaborative, integrated approach is critical to unlocking maximum value from technology investments.”

The 2023 CER highlights how marketing teams can do their best work by not only investing in new solutions, but also building relationships with internal IT teams to ensure all technology is used effectively and responsibly.

    2023 CER

    What happens when the CMO and CIO aren’t aligned?

    In this issue of the Customer Engagement Report, we surveyed 400 marketing and IT professionals to identify critical barriers to alignment.

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    About Merkle

    Merkle, a dentsu company, is a leading data-driven customer experience management (CXM) company that specializes in the delivery of unique, personalized customer experiences across platforms and devices. For more than 30 years, Fortune 1000 companies and leading nonprofit organizations have partnered with Merkle to maximize the value of their customer portfolios. The company's heritage in data, technology, and analytics forms the foundation for its unmatched skills in understanding consumer insights that drive hyper-personalized marketing strategies. Its combined strengths in consulting, creative, media, analytics, data, identity, CX/commerce, technology, and loyalty & promotions drive improved marketing results and competitive advantage. Merkle has more than 16,000 employees in 30+ countries throughout the Americas, EMEA, and APAC. For more information, contact Merkle at 1-877-9-Merkle or visit