Recent studies conducted by Digiday for Vizu as reported by eMarketer show that marketers are looking to increase spend. In fact 64% of respondents said they will increase paid social media ad spends. This research demonstrates modest growing importance of social media ad spend with the full spectrum of marketing budgets but it’s instructive to view this latest research with an eye on the future.
IBM’s 2012 Global CEO Study, ‘Leading Through Connections,’ projects a 256% increase in social media spend with a 61% decline in traditional media spend. In fact, social media spend comes in 2nd on the list of customer interaction tools projected over the next 3-5 years. In fact, it’s a mistake to view any one piece of the marketing spend in isolation but rather observe the changing mix that reflects shifts in consumer and technology.
Ultimately I believe the consumer purchasing journey is a forever shape-shifting dynamic and that what matters most is not where brands spending their advertising budgets but rather their ability to remain nimble enough to keep up with their customers.
This capacity necessitates a painful shift away from dependence on pre-existing business models, profits centers and media plans towards investments in social listening tools, emerging technologies and al the internal restructuring this implies. What is clear, however, is that the new dialogue between brands and consumers, hopefully moderated by ad agencies, will become increasingly fractured across media channels, specific topics and niches audiences. While this makes the marketer’s job more difficult, it also provides the opportunity to speak more directly to a growing number of specific audiences who, sufficiently motivated, will happily share the responsibility for promoting your brand.