*This guest post was provided by the good folks at SEMAdvisory.
The old tried-and-true forms of traditional advertising are being shifted to the backburner. Print media such as magazines and newspapers, and broadcast media like radio and television, are seeing fewer and fewer budget dollars from businesses who are finding online marketing more effective, and more cost-effective.
According to a marketing research report co-sponsored by ExactTarget.com and Econsultancy, more money is being allocated to digital forms of advertising by more businesses. The report is based on poll to over 1,000 marketers regarding their 2010 marketing and branding strategies.
Despite economic decline over the last few years, 46% of marketers polled said they are increasing their overall advertising budgets in 2010. And 66% of those polled said they are increasing their digital advertising budgets. Overall, the report says it expects a 17% surge in the total amount of digital advertising spending.
Metrics is the New Rule
For advertising dollars to be worth the expense, it needs to be effective. And though there are ways to trace and measure the conversions of some traditional forms of advertising like sales letters, knowing the exact ROI an advertising campaign reaches per person is nearly impossible.
But not with digital marketing. Marketing via the internet allows an entirely new “scientific” aspect to measuring and tracking advertising efforts. That is one reason many marketers are adjusting their marketing efforts toward digital advertising. The majority of online marketers can effectively measure the advertising results of strategies such as SEO, email, and pay per click. That is why 64% of marketers are plan to increase marketing dollars toward these strategies in 2010.
And while digital marketing is still a growing trend, not everyone is getting on board. However, 28% of marketers polled said they are shifting at least a small portion of their marketing budget to digital channels. And 34% of said that “more science than art” is the reason for shifting some budgetary monies.
Social media is also seeing a spike in allocated funds. 70% of respondents said they will be increasing budgets for off-site social media such as Twitter and Facebook. Additionally, the growing popularity of mobile advertising is spurring on 56% of respondents to increase spending toward mobile searches.
Digital Advertising Challenges
Though more marketers are spending more money than ever on digital advertising, there are still some limitations and barriers that a few have not yet overcome. 48% of respondents said that the biggest barrier to digital advertising growth was the lack of understanding about the media. Additionally, 35% said they have a lack of staff who can implement and track digital advertising.
So while digital advertising is still growing, and many more marketers are increasing digital marketing budgets, it seems there is still much to learn about the opportunities of online marketing. The digital channels of marketing present a vast frontier for marketers to spend quality advertising dollars in the future when it is better understood and the staff is available to conduct digital advertising in earnest.