It really is no joke. Holding onto key talent is tough, and this is especially true of the digital marketing and marketing technology space. In May 2019, the UK unemployment rate was just 4%, lower than the 5% that economists deem as ‘full employment’ and no where is that shortage felt more acutely than in the world of Marketing Automation.

In fact, 40% of organisations say their biggest challenge in delivering a successful Marketing Automation strategy is a lack of skills and expertise*.

This growing demand for a shortage of skills is creating an unprecedented war for Marketing Automation talent and, as a result, marketing projects and programs are suffering.

It means that head-hunters will continue to poach key employees and salary hyper-inflation is a guarantee, even for the most junior of staff or those barely in the platform. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that whole teams dedicated to delivering Marketing Automation can suddenly leave an organisation—in fact we’ve seen it numerous times with various customers we’ve worked with.

So, what does this situation mean for digital marketers, and especially Marketing Automation certified marketers that operate in a growth market in a large city (such as London)?

As a marketing leader you have a few choices when it comes to retaining talent:

  • Be a fabulous employer and create an environment where employees truly love to work whatever the demands or focus.
  • Pay over the odds for key skills.
  • Be constantly at risk of losing key employees.


  • Choice 1 is saturated as many organisations strive to have a fabulous environment for work, so perhaps that is no longer the key differentiator that it once was.
  • Choice 2 means salary inflation out of kilter with the rest of the organisation and is often unsustainable in enterprise environments.
  • Choice 3 leads to business disruption and a lack of continuity.

None of these choices offer a viable solution, so what is the answer?

Option 1: Level Up more of your current marketing staff that show the characteristics or traits to be able to deliver Marketing Automation successfully in-house.

Option 2: Outsource your Marketing Automation delivery to an expert partner that guarantees resource and execution, but you continue to maintain creative control and own the marketing strategy.

Option 3: Adopt simplification tools, like CleverTouch Momentum.

We’ve written a handy guide to provide a balanced assessment on the key challenges senior marketers are facing with the War for Talent and the three options available to them to support their Marketing Automation ambitions.

War for Marketing Automation Talent - How to Win Through Inhouse Outsourced or a Hybrid Approach to Marketing Automation

* Source: Walker Sands State of Marketing Technology (2018)