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Targeting has a huge role in how marketers spend their time and money. In an April 2015 study by Millward Brown Digital, nearly 50% of US brand marketers ranked their ability to reach target audiences as a key factor in media budget allocation, as did over 65% of media and agency respondents. Similarly, among business-to-business marketing execs polled worldwide by Regalix in February 2015, target customers were the leading basis on which they chose their marketing channel/mix, tying with marketing objectives/goals at 75% of respondents each.
However, finding the right media mix is a leading challenge for today’s marketers. Just 25% of brand marketers polled by Millward Brown were confident that they had an optimal media mix; about half of media and agency respondents said the same. In May 2015 polling by Strata, 22% of US ad agency professionals cited media mix as the biggest challenge for their agency in 2015—the second-highest response.
When asked about the “best-in-class” media allocation, brand marketers polled by Millward Brown allocated the largest share to website and content development, followed by traditional advertising, with each grabbing just under one-fifth of the total. Digital advertising landed in third, at 14% of time and effort. Social, mobile advertising and apps, and search each grabbed just over 10% share.
Results indicated that preferences had shifted year over year. Brand marketers were most likely to have increased mobile’s share and decrease email’s. Social, search and traditional advertising had each gained small shares at the expense of website and content development, online ads, and events and conferences.
Respondents weren’t overly positive about how far along they were digitally: Only 43% of brand marketers were confident in their integration of digital into their marketing strategy. However, further results showed that this group was certainly making moves toward a more digital media mix. Over two-thirds of brand marketers had created integrated strategies—up from 59% in 2014. Six in 10 media and agency marketers said the same.
Collaboration is key to achieving an optimized media mix and digital integration. Commenting on current and future progress, Millward Brown noted: “The solution rests in marketers’ ability to foster internal alignment. Sharing information, planning, and setting strategies across teams and channels is critical for success.”
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