Hydra, a provider of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) marketing technology surveyed over 300 UK-based digital marketers in April 2011 and focused on how digital marketing teams currently operate, based on collaboration, use of technologies and competitor analysis.


The aim of the survey was to address three key areas:

  1. Assess the level of integration between Natural Search, Paid Search and Social Media teams through keyword sharing across disciplines
  2. Measure the number of tools currently used by in-house and agency teams and the percentage of needs met by these toolsets
  3. Gauge the appetite for benchmarking against competitors and the level of ease for accessing competitor information.

As Asian e-Marketing believes that the key findings of Hydra’s report could be of interest to digital marketers in the region as well, they are listed here:

  • There are benefits to sharing keywords and phrases across digital channels
  • Technology is a necessity for managing, reporting and implementing digital campaigns
  • There is a need to simplify benchmarking against and understanding of competitor data

Advantages of collaboration

Measuring performance for terms at a granular level and discovering new high value keywords is challenging for most marketers. Nevertheless, Hydra's survey shows that teams sharing terms between disciplines display greater confidence in dealing with them when compared to their peers working in isolation. Thus, it seems that those that do are more confident:

  • The keywords and phrases in their campaigns reach their target audience (73% vs. 64% of the general sample and 54% of those that do not share keywords);
  • Their team is 'on trend' when handling new keyword trends (47% vs. 42% of the general sample and 28% of those that do not share terms).

Although most respondents (55%) answered 'no' when asked about knowing which new words or expressions are worth spending money on, there was a palpable difference between these subgroups: of those that share terms, over half replied 'yes' (54%); whereas a great majority of those that do not share terms answered 'no' (80%).

Consolidated technology

The use of technology in online marketing has become ubiquitous.  Marketers, however, are in need of a more consolidated technology landscape where single-task tools can be replaced by more comprehensive multi-functional systems.

29% of respondents to Hydra’s survey indicated less than 50% of their needs are met by their current toolset.  Unsurprisingly, however, those with a greater number of tools (10 or more) had the highest percentage (39%) of replies within the '75+% of needs met' band.

In contrast, a resounding majority (90%) saw an advantage in having digital teams use a common reporting and campaign implementation platform.

Desire for competitive intelligence

Benchmarking performance against competitors is crucial for most online marketers. Yet, there is a palpable need for facilitating access to competitor information.

The majority of respondents (77%) regularly benchmark their site against competitors. This was relatively consistent regardless of the number of keywords they managed.

However, 56% admitted accessing competitor data was either 'moderately difficult' or 'difficult'; the most prevalent answer across the whole sample was 'moderately difficult' at 45%. Those with tens of thousands of keywords displayed the highest percentage of respondents finding access to competitor data 'moderately difficult'.

“Hydra's survey shows teams that share terms and work collaboratively have greater confidence in their success than those who don't, because they can consider the whole picture”, says Ruth Zohrer, Solutions Consultant at Hydra. “Across the board, however, there is an obvious desire to gain greater insight into competitor data easily and efficiently. These two challenges justify their request for better, more comprehensive technology that meets most of their needs: an all-encompassing solution that can replace a set of multiple tools.”

In response Hydra has launched the One Platform this year. It enables enterprise marketers to strategically and proactively monitor, report and participate in the conversation existing and potential customers are having about their brand online. One from Hydra is focused on driving revenue and return on investment (ROI) through integrated, efficient and optimised management and implementation of phrase marketing campaigns across online disciplines.

Source: Hydra