Analysis of the world’s largest companies reveals growing link between digital marketing and profitability

LEWIS, the global marketing consultancy, today launched its Global Marketing Engagement IndexÔ 2019. The study revealed a clear link between better marketing engagement and bottom-line performance. The agency analyzed the top 300 companies from the Forbes Global 2000 list using a proprietary methodology (LEWIS MET).

The study found a significant gap between the margins and profitability of low scoring companies and higher performing MET brands. An average improvement of five margin points separated the high performers. Across the whole sample, the average margin was 12.7%. This translates into profits of $6.9 billion across the global 300. The top ten brands in the study, however, showed an average margin of 17.4% / profits of $14.3 billion. The bottom ten brands in the ranking showed average margins of 8.8% / profits of $4.4 billion.

The best performing businesses (based on Forbes) were stronger at digital marketing, earned and social media. Older companies outscored younger ones overall, but the latter had better digital marketing and website optimization scores.

“The rate of change provides growth opportunities for brands. Simply put, companies that are willing to innovate in marketing perform better at the bottom-line,” said Giles Peddy, Senior Vice President, LEWIS.

Key findings:

  • #1 company in the LEWIS Global Marketing Engagement Index: IBM
  • Firms in the Americas and EMEA outperformed brands from APAC
  • The bigger the company, the slower it is to respond to enquiries, especially across email and social; however, older companies had better response rates to enquiries across phone, social and email
  • The use and adoption of autonomous tools (e.g. chatbots) was low, despite poor response times across multiple channels
  • 57% of the top 300 brands are not using paid ads to serve specific marketing campaign information to drive traffic
  • One third of firms did not either use website video or custom conversions on their website
  • Half of the 300 brands appear to not be using marketing automation