Digital marketing isn’t slowing down any time soon, with a reputation for both stability and constant change. In the last quarter alone, Facebook generated an ad revenue of $6.24 million dollars, signifying yet another huge opportunity in digital marketing. It’s stats like this that have led to many who work in the industry being an optimistic bunch – our '41 Hour' Report discovered 84% of digital marketers feel positive about their current role, and are inspired and passionate about digital marketing.

However, the 41 Hour Report also discovered there are some down sides to working in the digital marketing industry, with many feeling underpaid and struggling to prove their ROI. It seems that pay, long hours and lack of budget are key factors that need to be addressed to harmonise practices.

Similarly to other industries, such as finance and IT, the gender pay gap still exists. The research discovered that men are still earning almost a tenth (9.5%) more than their female counterparts, taking home £48,025 versus £43,864 for women. This is an issue the C-suite will have to solve, as all marketers need to feel that they can prosper in the industry for it to keep moving forward.

The struggle to secure budget is a frustration for most professions – 56% of marketers say they struggle to secure budgets on an ongoing basis, whilst almost a third struggle to prove ROI to their bosses. Many feel because of this they can’t perform to the best of their ability. Of course, it’s not always easy to get the big budget, but to ensure they use the budget they do have effectively, digital marketers must work closely with the C-Suite to provide them with clear and measureable KPIs for the campaigns they are executing.

The famous This Girl Can campaign by Sport England and FCB England had a significant budget of £10 million, and with clear, measureable goals it resulted in its video being viewed 36 million times on Facebook and YouTube. The engagement turned into action, with over 1.2 million women being influenced by the campaign to start exercising. Of course, not all companies will have a budget like this to play with, but if the C-suite takes the time to calculate the budget required and digital marketers map out what they can achieve for that budget, marketers will be in a better place to execute their campaigns to successfully meet expectations.

There are many issues that can be difficult to resolve immediately. From tackling the latest technologies and platforms, to learning new skills and terminology, digital marketers face fresh challenges every day.

While many thrive off this rapidly changing and innovative environment, our research suggests that digital marketers would like more recognition for the contribution they make.

Marketers must command the attention of C-level executives and consistently justify and measure investment in tools and talent, particularly when experimenting with new or unproven technologies and platforms.


By Bea Patman, head of SEO at Greenlight Digital

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