ROI is King

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According to iMedia Connections, marketers in the U.S. appear to be eyeing strategies that offer more measurable results.

“With the current economic recession, digital marketing professional are holding out hope that some of the budget dollars originally slated for traditional marketing will move into the cheaper, more measurable digital medium – and they just might be in luck,” wrote Rich Cherecwich, associate editor at iMedia.

  • Fifty-nine percent of respondents to iMedia’s survey said they would “Heavy up on measurable, ROI-driven strategies – if we can’t prove it’s working, we’ll slash it.”
  • Meanwhile, 26 percent said they would “Stay the course. We’ve had cutbacks, but our mix is basically the same.”
  • Fifteen percent indicated they would “Revert to what we know best, slash the new and least proven (including digital).”
  • “More than half of the brand marketers believe it will be online video (29 percent) or social media (28 percent),” wrote Cherecwich. “But while these brands expect social media to be a winner this year, they’re still divided on whether or not they should put their money there.”
  • Fifty-two percent of respondents said though they spend personal time on social network sites, they are not planning on shifting marketing dollars in that direction.

In terms of primary reasons why marketers are not spending more on digital marketing efforts:

  • 39 percent cited “Dependence on TV, FSIs and other traditional measures,” according to iMedia.
  • Nineteen percent cited “Corporate culture or political considerations,” while another 19 percent cited “Inertia or fear.”
  • Fourteen percent noted “Lack of metrics,” while 9 percent cited “Lack of creative options.”

The economy’s effect on employment may be against the grain, according to Advertising Age, which Cherecwich refers to in his online post. While 18,700 advertising and media jobs were cut in December, according to Advertising Age, 800 jobs were added in the digital and search realm.

  • Regardless, 60 percent of the marketers surveyed at the iMedia Brand Summit said “they don’t think digital jobs will continue to grow, and they’ve had to trim staff,” according to Cherecwich.
  • He notes that 63 percent of agencies, publishers, ad networks, researchers and others surveyed expect digital jobs to see growth in 2009 and are having difficulty finding people to fill open positions, Cherecwich wrote.



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