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Marketing dollars are continuing an inexorable march toward digital. eMarketer estimates that US online ad spending will hit $39.5 billion in 2012 before climbing to $62 billion by 2016. However, online ad spending growth is set to decline over the same time period, dropping from 23.3% in 2012 to 7.8% in 2016.
Data from a May 2012 survey of senior-level marketers and agency principals by business development company RSW/US corresponded with those projections. The survey found that 57% of respondents said that 30% or more of their budget had shifted from traditional media to digital over the past three years. Back in 2009, 67% said that at least 30% of their budget had shifted, indicating a slowdown in the move to digital over the past few years.
Overall, digital is commanding an ever-growing piece of the marketing pie—44% of respondents spent at least half of their total marketing budget on digital and social media in 2012. That was an increase from 31% in 2009.
In terms of the types of digital capabilities being employed by marketers, web development saw a huge jump in importance. In 2009, 54% said they were using development. Three years later, in May 2012, 87% said they were using it. Online advertising also saw a significant bump, from 37% in 2009 to 74% in 2012. And while the use of social and digital media planning or buying had not been recorded in 2009, in the recent survey, 55% of marketers said they used it.
Interestingly, more marketers said that measuring the impact of social media was easier in 2012 than it was three years ago. However, RSW/US theorized that most marketers may be relying on simpler metrics, such as Facebook “likes,” without fundamentally understanding how these measurements impact their business.
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Check out today’s other articles, “The Ripple Effect of Following a Brand on Social Media” and “Major Gains and Losses in Smartphone OS War in Germany.”
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