Marketing & Sales

All Expertise

Digital Marketing

We help clients make core transformations in marketing strategy and operations to power growth through digital advantage.

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Digital marketing is no longer about merely adding online channels to the media mix; it is about integrating digital into all facets of marketing. Our global expertise—we have more than 50 dedicated digital marketing experts in more than 30 locations—across digital analytics, market research, technology, business design, and online strategy helps clients bring the full potential of digital marketing to bear on their business.

What we do

Digital marketing engagements are typically multifaceted, solving for specific digital marketing challenges while building ongoing client capabilities. In addition to defining new roles and responsibilities and helping develop employees’ skills, we address technology infrastructure issues and identify potential partners. We work with clients primarily in three core areas:

  • Harnessing digital marketing to transform business effectiveness
    We help clients drive higher sales productivity and other performance gains through digital marketing. This shift involves mastering multichannel to generate distinctive and practical insights from digital sources as a starting point for clients to develop new contact strategies, streamline planning and execution processes, and upgrade internal capabilities.
  • Optimizing the customer experience across channels
    We work with clients to integrate the flow of the customer experience across channels (e.g., face-to-face, telephone), opening up new lead sources, supporting sales for smaller-value transactions, and creating new models for service. We continuously provide new and practical perspectives on the evolving Customer Decision Journey, and work with clients to make the deep, transformational changes needed to support new strategies and capability demands.
  • Developing and helping implement new growth models
    We design appropriate business models and map development pathways for new opportunities by combining insights from digital with an integrated customer experience approach. These new sources of growth can be new products and services or new forms of media that better engage and convert existing online visitors. We also design radically new customer experiences that drive more demand for our clients’ existing offerings.

Examples of our work

  • Analyzed and restructured a client’s mix of channels to have a more prominent low-cost digital offering that could reach and serve new market segments
  • Helped clients build new capabilities, such as redesigning their content-creation processes
  • By addressing inefficiencies in online processes, we have helped clients triple productivity in customer acquisition and cross-selling
  • Worked with a client in the food business to increase sales by quickly establishing a digital marketing capability

Proprietary tools and solutions

Our team uses proprietary tools and exclusive partner data to develop fact-based insights for building digital strategies. These include:

  • Proprietary panels (Consumer Decision Journey and the 500-member Global SMB Panel)
  • Social @ McKinsey, which helps clients find real business value from social media.
  • Partnerships, such as OMEX (a collaboration with Google to measure online responses across the Consumer Decision Journey)

McKinsey's Consumer Marketing Analytics Center (CMAC) accelerates your ability to capture the potential of big data by driving insights from advanced analytics into action across your marketing and consumer-facing organization. CMAC's global team of 130 advanced analytics practitioners have deep expertise in data, approaches, proprietary tools, client industries, and best practices for organizational transformation. In addition to digital marketing, CMAC delivers impact in pricing, promotions, customer life-cycle management, and assortment-optimization programs across retail, consumer goods, banking, insurance, telecom, media, and health-care organizations. To support our advanced analytic work we can host client data in our ISO-certified data center in Atlanta. CMAC has high-quality, cost-efficient advanced analytics-offshoring capabilities through our India and Poland-based Centers of Competence.

Featured insights


Three ways companies can make co-creation pay off

January 2015—Involving outsiders in the creative process of developing products and services is harder than it sounds. Here’s how leading companies do it.


Busting mobile-shopping myths

December 2014—What do mobile shoppers really want? Less than many retailers think.

Private brands

Private brands: Five steps to keep fickle mobile shoppers loyal

November 2014—A compelling private brand proposition can lock in retail consumers who are tempted to shop somewhere else.

Big Data eBook

Big data, analytics, and the future of marketing & sales

July 2013—Companies that turn big data into above-market growth will identify valuable business opportunities, turn insights into well-designed products/offers, and deliver these effectively.more

article | McKinsey Quarterly

The coming era of ‘on-demand’ marketing

April 2013—Emerging technologies are poised to personalize the consumer experience radically—in real time and almost everywhere. It’s not too early to prepare.more

Stores need to create incentives for shoppers to go mobile
article | Harvard Business Review

Mobile shopping's data goldmine

June 2013—Retailers need to figure out how to best use the treasure trove of insights into customers’ in-store behavior.

article | McKinsey Quarterly

Demystifying social media

April 2012—As the marketing power of social media grows, it no longer makes sense to treat it as an experiment. Here’s how senior leaders can harness social media to shape consumer decision making in predictable ways.more

  • includes:
Beyond social media buzz
article | Forbes

How to get beyond the social buzz

July 2012—It’s hard to say that social media doesn’t significantly impact sales. Calculating a social GRP—figuring out what your earned media is worth—will help CMOs make informed spending choices between social and traditional channels.

Meet our people

Adam Bird

Adam Bird

Dave Edelman

David Edelman


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