In February, the top reason for burnout across all professions was “unmanageable workload.” During the pandemic, that was the second most voiced concern. The lack of separation between “work” and “life” was the most pressing concern during the crisis, which makes sense because more marketers are working from their homes. Job security was the third biggest source of burnout during COVID. That concern was not on the list in February.
However, that’s not an unfounded concern, according to a recent survey of 274 marketing leaders. According to The CMO Survey from Deloitte and Duke Fuqua, 9% of marketing jobs have been axed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Nearly a quarter (24%) don’t expect those jobs to ever come back, while 19.2% say the jobs will return in 6-12 months. Another 19.9% think the jobs will come back in 1-2 years.
Against this backdrop, marketer optimism has plummeted to Great Recession levels. The optimism rating has fallen from 68.9% in February 2018 to 50.9% in June 2020, according to the survey. That compares to the 47.7% seen in February 2009.
As marketers face their own internal challenges and stress, they’re also dealing with changing consumer behavior. Consumers are more open to new digital offerings introduced during the crisis, according to 85% of marketers surveyed. According to marketing leaders, other notable changes in consumer behavior include:
- Placing greater value on digital experiences (84%)
- Greater acknowledgement when companies attempt to ‘do good’ (79%)
- A lower likelihood to buy (67.2%)
- An unwillingness to pay full price (43.3%)
- An increased priority on trusted relationships (29.3%)
The largest number of marketers expect consumer behavior to return to normal in the next 6-12 months, while a significant number expect it to take a bit longer: 1-2 years.