What is always-on marketing? | Smart Insights

Are you practicing always-on marketing, and if not, why not?

The opportunity to dynamically update and test digital media and experiences to improve effectiveness has always been claimed as a key benefit compared to traditional media but does this happen in practice? So in our new research report on managing digital marketing we were interested to see to what extent companies have processes in place to manage optimization continuously.

Dynamic personalization and structured testing and improvement of digital experiences is a key feature of Always-on marketing, a term that has emerged to show a change in emphasis from burst marketing campaigns to generate awareness and response to investment in marketing activities that continuously drive and meet changing demand. This is what Google has called the Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT).

For Always-on marketing to be effective, efforts should be made to increase the effectiveness of different digital channels through testing, review, and optimization. In the research, we explored the use of digital marketing optimization through a question which reviews the use of testing across channels.

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The responses showed a core group of leaders have moved beyond intermittent to more regular structured testing and optimization programmes across different digital media and experiences (sites and mobile).


A relatively small proportion (around a fifth) have fully embraced optimization with these leaders running a continuous, structured program. The percentage of leaders who optimized individual channels using continuous optimization or structured tests were:

  • Digital media 19%
  • Digital experiences 14%
  • Content 22%
  • Outbound messaging 16%

Do you find it surprising that digital experiences are not optimized by more frequently? I don’t since we asked a similar question on site update / design refresh frequency:


It would be good to see more people move to what Chris Goward calls evolutionary site design. The question is what is stopping businesses investing in optimization? What are your experiences?

Optimisation interval

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