The Fifth Annual Senior Marketers Monitor conducted by Australian Marketing Institute and Colmar Brunton forecasts healthy budget growth, stabilisation in digital spending and a rise in content marketing.
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Marketing budgets continue to grow
Budgets are expected to record another overall increase in 2014, at around an average of 3.4% against the 1% recorded in the previous survey, and the 4% growth of 2011. 41% of marketers are anticipating their 2014 budgets to increase, against 38% expecting expenditures to remain largely unchanged.
“This year confirms a trend where we are seeing large budget variances across all sectors, but organisations with a turnover of under $150 million are more likely to be expecting budget increases, and among those expecting increases the average lift is a very healthy 18%,” says Mark Crowe, Australian Marketing Institute CEO.
Content marketing on the rise
Included for the first time, expenditure on content marketing is expected to increase for almost half of the organisations. Rounding out the top five channels by expenditure are:
>> Content marketing
>> Social networking and Web 2.0 applications
>> Online advertising
>> Public relations
>> Mobile advertising
“We have seen a sharp increase in content marketing – while not surprising it’s still quite extraordinary”, says Crowe. “Meanwhile, the use of social networking and Web 2.0 as a communication channel continues to grow, but spending has stabilised.”
Traditional Media Growing Again
“The movement away from investment in traditional marketing has been arrested with an intent to increase the use of channels such as radio and Pay TV growing for the first time in a number of years,” Crowe reveals.
Marketers continue to feel positive about their profession and its role
Most senior marketers (77%) feel ‘positive’ or ‘very positive’ about the role and influence of marketing in Australia today, on par with previous surveys.
Crowe states, “We have now seen a continuing confidence in marketing’s role and influence in Australian business over the five years of this research. This also gives the lie to the often expressed view that marketing is marginalised and that marketers feel the same.”
No major changes are evident compared to the results forecast for 2013
>> Measures to increase sales
>> Customer acquisition
>> Maximising efficiency of marketing expenditure
>> Maintaining, building brand/s
>> More profitable market segments
“Top marketing priorities continue to be measures to increase sales, customer acquisition and focusing on more profitable market segments, with a decreased focus on efficiency and brand building than in previous years,” Crowe elaborates.
Top challenges faced by marketers include
>> Effectively getting messages to market
>> Acquiring new customers
>> Maintaining current customer base
>> Demonstrating the contribution of marketing to senior management
>> Maintaining pricing/margins
The Australian Marketing Institute and Colmar Brunton’s Fifth Annual Senior Marketers Monitor reveals a range of insights about current market sentiment and practice, providing pointers to changing levels of marketing activity. The survey was conducted during December 2013.