SINGAPORE: APAC is a region in which digital transformation is reaching maturity levels in most countries, but marketers need to lead organisational change to deliver great customer experience, a new study has said.

According to the fourth annual APAC Digital Marketing Performance Dashboard from Adobe and the CMO Council, just 9% of marketers are satisfied that they work in an organisational culture that is "dedicated to a unified, dynamic customer experience powered by creative content and digital experiences".

For the first time this year, the report also examined the creativity and content strategy of marketers in the region and found only 4% feel they have "a highly evolved creative engine fuelled by an organisation-wide, unified vision".

With creativity and content playing an increasingly important role in delivering personalised customer experience, the report urged marketers to collaborate more effectively and break down silos in their organisations.

"While marketers rightly see digital marketing as a channel to engage audiences, they need to begin looking at incorporating unified digital customer experiences across all touchpoints," said Stephen Hamill, managing director of Adobe South East Asia.

"The lack of a unified creative vision, and an unaligned organisational culture, are both huge obstacles which marketers need to overcome.

"Hence, the role of marketers moving forward is to lead a paradigm shift in their organisations to enable the delivery of a unified customer experience. In essence, we're saying that marketers need to helm business transformation to digital."

The effective use of data also emerged as another area of concern with the report highlighting signs that regional marketers might be reverting to using data just as a reporting metric rather than as a tool to improve campaign performance.

For example, 17% of marketers in Singapore acknowledged that they archive data but then do nothing with it.

The report also revealed a degree of scepticism concerning the ROI of digital. Across the region, 17% of marketers reported that their leadership teams have doubts about it, rising to 21% in Singapore and Australia.

However, at least in the case of Australia, this could be explained by leadership teams taking a step back to check on how their investments have performed, according to Liz Miller, vice-president of marketing at the CMO Council.

"They're not pulling support from digital investment, they're merely questioning the things they just invested in and making sure they're on track," she said.

Data sourced from Adobe, CMO Council; additional content by Warc staff