Survey Reveals Tech Marketers Focus on Lead Generation, Return on Investment and ‘Doing More with Less’

July 27, 2017 Tanya Lord

Illinois Technology Association partners with One North to analyze marketing practices for Chicago technology companies 

CHICAGO – July 27, 2017 – The Illinois Technology Association, a business organization dedicated to scaling technology companies, partnered with B2B digital agency One North to launch an inaugural benchmark survey designed to help fast-growing technology companies identify marketing best practices and gauge where their strategies fit among others.

The 2017 ITA Marketing Benchmark Survey provides benchmarking data on marketing budgets, communications channels, tools and performance goals of Chicago’s growth-stage, business-to-business technology companies. The survey also uncovers how tech marketers prioritize, and yet continue to struggle with, measuring return on investment, justifying marketing spend and making the most of limited bandwidth and resources.

“The benchmark data helps marketers critically analyze decisions and amend practices for the benefit of their organizations’ future,” said Julia Kanouse, CEO of the Illinois Technology Association. “Marketers can also use our findings to demonstrate strategies worthy of investment, or unveil areas where they may lag behind, and make a case for additional resources.”

According to the survey, 87 percent of respondents identified measuring and/or justifying long-term ROI as one of the greatest challenges they currently face. For example, nearly half of respondents in the survey reported that they do not have the right tools or time to effectively measure conversion metrics – from initial leads at the top of the sales funnel to closed deals.

In addition, 58 percent of those surveyed do not feel their budget is large enough to achieve their marketing objectives. These issues may stem from failing to measure against the right key performance indicators, such as the percentage of marketing leads that result in closed sales, or not determining an accurate measure of ROI with company leaders.

Further, the survey also pointed to some areas of disconnect, particularly as marketing leaders consider the best ways to invest their limited resources to achieve business goals. For example, although nearly 90 percent of respondents use social media for promotion, they also identified this channel as the least effective method for lead generation.

“Reflecting on the broader implications of the survey’s findings will enable marketing leaders to uncover and defend areas worthy of continued investment,” said John Simpson, CEO at One North Interactive. “Our hope is to help marketing leaders engage in the right initiatives, at the right time, to effectively support their fast-growing companies.”

One area of investment that marketers remain confident in is marketing technology. Salesforce, Hubspot, Marketo, and Slack rank among the must-have tools marketers reported they cannot live without. When it comes to new solutions on their radar, Gainsight, Bizible, and Engagio round out popular additions to the martech ecosystem.

A complimentary report on the 2017 ITA Marketing Benchmark Survey is available to all survey participants. The full report is also available for purchase at

About Illinois Technology Association
The Illinois Technology Association (ITA) scales Illinois tech companies. With innovative resources that connect members to the local tech ecosystem, build their talent networks and create visibility for their brands, ITA is growing the local tech community. Founded in 2005 and supporting 500+ growth and late stage tech companies, ITA has a rich history of driving business forward. For more information, visit, follow @ITAbuzz on Twitter or find us on LinkedIn.

About One North Interactive
One North is a B2B digital agency that partners with professional services organizations to create powerful digital experiences aimed at achieving marketing and business development goals. The firm specializes in brand, digital strategy, experience design, technology and managed hosting. It holds deep expertise within the legal, consulting, finance, accounting, engineering and construction industries. More than 90 multidisciplinary One North professionals collaborate to produce award-winning work and build strategic partnerships, including with Sitecore as a Platinum Solution and Hosting Partner. For more information, visit or connect on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.




The One North Ideas Update delivers each month’s latest posts on digital for PSOs—including industry trends, news and our latest research—directly to your inbox. Although it’s our goal to always include thought-provoking and compelling content, you can unsubscribe at any time. 

See our Privacy Policy to learn more about how we protect and manage your submitted data.

Tanya Lord Head of Marketing Communications

As Head of Marketing Communications for One North, Tanya connects professional services organizations with the most innovative digital strategies, industry trends and thought leaders.  Responsible for leading One North’s marketing communications, she ensures the successful delivery of One North’s message by reinforcing the agency’s deep industry knowledge and vertical expertise. She can also keep you current on the latest celebrity gossip.

  • If I were a vegetable: I'd definitely be Zucchini – but only if it were fried.
  • Superpower I wish I had: I've always wanted to be a mind reader. I'm naturally curious ... and an eavesdropper!

One North Interactive 
222 North LaSalle St, #1500
Chicago, IL 60601

+1 312.469.1740