Marketing Week is one the UK’s top two marketing business magazines. Like many, they do an annual Career & Salary Survey. Over the past week, they’ve been revealing interesting results from their 2024 survey:

  • The most overrated marketing skill: social media [1]
  • The most undervalued marketing skill: marketing strategy [2]
  • The greatest current marketing skill gap: data & analytics [3]

Individually, these three findings may not be a big deal. Collectively, they are.

MW Sniff Test on the Research

This is an annual survey of 3,000 UK marketing executives at all levels. The primary purpose of the survey is to gauge current salary levels for all major marketing functions and levels. The findings presented here are from ancillary questions in the survey.
Looking at MW’s Three Rules for Reviewing Research [4]:

  1. No obvious bias. In our opinion, the UK marketing industry is still more professional and business-results driven than North America’s.
  2. Methodology seems sound.
  3. No causal relationship is proposed here. These are marketing executives’ opinions on how business are valuing and/or paying them and their cohorts for their marketing skills and roles.

So Meg gives this one an enthusiastic, ‘YES!’. Understanding the previous sentence may require you to check Note #4 below.

How We’re Misvaluing Marketing Skills

Businesses are still overrating social media skills and undervaluing the marketing strategy skills that should brought to bear first. Executional skills are still wagging the strategic dog.

And just as generative AI is at a stage where it can cost-effectively process massive volumes of consumer data, marketers lack the skill to properly prompt AI, and to draw actionable marketing and business conclusions.

At least in the opinion of marketers.

Notes and references:

  1. Josh Stephenson, ‘Overrated: Social media viewed as overly important by businesses, marketers say’,, March 6, 2024.
  2. Josh Stephenson, ‘Undervalued: The importance of marketing strategy is being missed by businesses, marketers say’,, March 5, 2024.
  3. Josh Stephenson, ‘Marketers point to data analysis as biggest skills gap in teams, survey says’,, March 4, 2024.
  4. Previously posted on Marketing Wilderness: SHOPPING BETTER THAN SEX? RESEARCH PROVES IT.