Enterprise marketers use more than 12 distinct toolsets to support data-driven marketing efforts on average, according to findings laid out in a new report by Winterberry Group and IAB.

The study found that there is an increasing demand for ‘interoperable’ tools among marketers that will help them achieve seamless customer experience across channels. A minority (9%) of those surveyed reported regularly working with upwards of 31 separate toolsets.

Regardless of how companies build their technology ‘stacks’, they are hindered by the difficulty of joining the data, according to cross-channel marketing company Signal’s CEO, Mike Sands.

“Marketers are on a journey to unlock the power of their data by unifying it across desktop, mobile, CRM, email, point-of-sale and more.  Their vision is to create a seamless experience for customers, but many brands are stuck in first gear because of the complex and difficult task of connecting massive amounts of fragmented data.”

An unrealized goal

Other findings from the report, which is based on the responses of over 50 advertisers, marketers, publishers and technology developers in North America, show that cross-channel marketing is an ‘unrealized goal’. The researchers found that less than half of marketers apply data and technology to key cross-channel initiatives such as user targeting, engagement and measurement.

A lack of integration has also been blamed on organizational siloes within companies utilizing different tools.

The report confirms that marketers are in the very early stages of their cross-channel evolution, according to Signal founder Marc Kiven.

“They’ve invested significantly in an expanding array of sophisticated toolsets, but there’s a maturity gap,” he commented.

“Regardless of whether marketers choose suite, cloud or independent solutions in their stacks, fueling these technologies with cross-channel data requires an integrated data layer as the foundation.”