Digital marketing is becoming key for brands to engage, acquire and retain customers, so its not shocking that the amount of revenue being spent on digital marketing is increasing. What might be surprising, though, is what types of marketing seem to work the best, with marketers choosing corporate websites over social media as the key to a successful campaign/
Digital marketing spending averages 2.5% of company revenue and that will increase by another 9% this year, according to the U.S. Digital Marketing Spending Survey, put out by Gartner Wednesday.
The survey, which took place in November and December of 2012, polled 253 marketers from U.S.-based companies that had more than $500 million in annual revenue. Respondents were chosen from across six industries: financial services and insurance, high-tech, manufacturing, media, retail and healthcare.
Digital marketing is defined by Gartner as "the ability to interactively communicate with customers through electronic channels, such as the Web, email, smart devices such as phones and tablets, and mobile applications."
Among the findings in the survey, perhaps the most interesting is that nearly half of all respondents cited the design, development and maintenance of a corporate website as the biggest key to a successful marketing campaign, beating out both social network marketing and digital advertising.
A total of 45% of those surveyed said corporate websites contributed to marketing success, with 18% giving it first place preference. 18% also cited digital advertising as the most important.
While, a total of 43% still cited both social media and digital advertising as contributing factors to success, only 6% said marketing on social networks was their first place choice.
Mobile marketing came out even worse, with only 24% of respondents saying that it was key to a successful campaign.
So does this mean that brands should not focus their advertising on social media and mobile? Of course they should. Social media should be a tool to engage users, but brands need to remember to invest in their own websites at the same time.
"The survey results suggest that the corporate website will not be displaced anytime soon by a brand's social media presence," Bill Gassman, research director at Gartner, said in a statement. "That's all the more reason for marketing leaders to continuously invest in measuring and optimizing their websites through Web analytics and testing, paying attention to all aspects — from customized landing pages to compelling content that encourages visitors to be engaged with your brand."
Other findings in the report
Of the six industries surveyed, media companies spent the larger percentage on marketing, a total of 12.7%, and they also plan the biggest increase in spending this year, 9.9%. The lowest percentage put into digital marketing was by high-tech, with 9.1%.
Only 10% of those surveyed said that their digital marketing budgets are expected to decrease, while 47% will stay the same and 43% will be going up.
When broken down, nearly 50% of digital marketing budgets are spent in four areas: advertising, with 12.5%; content creation, with 11.6%; search marketing, with 10.7%; and maintaining a corporate website, also with 10.7%.
Once again, marketers seem to have little confidence in mobile, spending only 7.4% of their budgets on it.
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