Tech Marketers Want To See ROI For Their Media Spend

A new global research initiative by IDG Research Services to gain insight into tech marketers' marketing/media spending plans and priorities for 2011 finds that 63% of marketing decision makers report a modest increase in media spending from 2010 to 2011. 6% expect a significant increase and only 10% report any contraction in spending in 2011. Global decision makers are significantly more likely to forecast an increase in spending than those with regional or local responsibilities.

39% of the respondents noted that their scope of decision making is global, covering multiple countries in more than one region, 31% have regional responsibilities, with involvement in multiple countries within a single region, and 30% have a local, single country focus. Annual media spending averages $6M (USD) among tech vendors surveyed and $10M (USD) among participating agencies.

According to the report, spending increases will be seen primarily in digital channels, with average allocations of 49% in 2010 and 52% in 2011. Print spending drops slightly as a share of overall dollars invested in 2011 (from an average of 18% to 16% in 2011) while spending on events and broadcast is expected to be flat.

Media Mix (% of Expenditures)

Media

2010

2011

Digital

49%

52%

Events

18

18

Print

18

16

Broadcast

7

7

Other

8

8

Source: IDG Research Services, February 2011

The majority of digital spending is concentrated on branded content sites (42% in 2010; 41% in 2011). Paid search currently ranks second. However, spending on ad networks continues to rise and is approaching spending on paid search in 2011. Spending on ad exchanges is highest among those with regional or global responsibilities and among those with annual media budgets of $1 million or more.

Marketers most often look to ROI, audience composition, data targeting capabilities, and audience reach when evaluating media channels, programs or partners for investment. On a scale of 1 to 5, where 5= critical, these attributes earned average scores of 4.3 or higher, with nine out of ten marketing decision makers rating them critical or very important factors in the decision making process.

Factors Important for Digital Spend (% of Respondents)

Factor

Critical

Very Important

Somewhat or Not

ROI

61%

32%

7

Audience Composition

52

37

11

Audience Reach

45

45

10

Data Targeting

42

51

7

High quality environment ads

32

48

20

Ad run control

31

44

25

Customized program ops

28

50

22

Ease of buying process

25

35

40

Ad sales customer service

16

37

47

Source: IDG Research Services, February 2011

Lead generation, custom content, and data targeting rank as the three most important marketing and promotional opportunities for tech marketers at both vendor companies and agencies. In fact, more than 50% note that lead generation is a critically important opportunity for engaging with customers, while one-third rate custom content and data targeting as critical in importance. Vendors more often place a very high level of importance on lead generation than agencies although it ranks as the top marketing and promotional opportunity among both targets.

Roughly three-quarters of marketing decision-makers expect spending to increase in each of these three areas in 2011, highlighting their continued importance to tech marketers.

Importance of Marketing Promotional Opportunities (% of respondents)

Factor

Critical

Very Important

Lead generation

54

33

Data targeting

36

40

Custom content

34

44

Social Media

24

32

Events

17

37

Video

15

33

Mobile

15

19

Source: IDG Research Services, February 2011

Custom content ranked second in importance behind lead generation as a key marketing/promotional opportunity and marketers are investing in a wide variety of custom programs. Among the top five opportunities:

  • Collateral (66% investing)
  • Webcasts/virtual events (64% investing)
  • Videos (55% investing)
  • Research  (46% investing)
  • Creation/launch of new websites (43% investing)

Social media is the one area where marketing decision makers most often expect to see an increase in spending over the next 12 months, says the report. Eight out of ten  note spending will increase. Notably no one expects spending on social media marketing initiatives to contract in 2011.

Inability to prove ROI in social media marketing, and lack of experience with social programs are the most common barriers to investment among both vendors and agencies.

Vendors also frequently note lack of clear internal ownership and a reluctance to move funds from tried and true practices of the past, while agencies cite a reluctance to move funds as well as a loss of brand control as key concerns prohibiting investment in social media.

Barriers to Social Media Campaign Investments (% of Respondents)

Barrier

% of Respondents

Inability to prove ROI

59%

Lack of experience w/social programs

42

Lack of clear internal ownership

32

Reluctance to change from tried and true

29

Lack of budget

24

Lack of senior mgt support

20

Source: IDG Research Services, February 2011

Despite these concerns, interest in social media marketing opportunities is widespread with nine out of ten marketing decision makers reporting they are engaging in social media marketing. Early indications are that initial efforts are meeting expectations for nearly half of all marketers, and falling short of expectations for 1/3rd.

Finally, the top targeting methods for digital marketing reported by those surveyed include the following strategies:

Top Targeting Methods for Digital Marketing (% of Respondents)

Targeting

Tech Vendors

Mktg/Ad Agencies

Demographic

77%

67%

Geographic

69

66

Behavioral

50

63

Contextual

52

60

Proprietary audience data

54

42

3rd party reported data

48

31

Retargeting

40

31

Psychographic

15

37

Source: IDG Research Services, February 2011

Please visit here for slide and a video review of the study from IDC.

 

Recommend (2)
1 comment about "Tech Marketers Want To See ROI For Their Media Spend".
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