The economy is improving, if B2C digital messaging budgets are any indication.
Among B2C marketers, 80.1% expect their spending for email, text and push messaging to increase in 202, according to the 2021 B2C Digital Marketing Trends Report, a study by MessageGears, done in partnership with Upwave.
Only 3.3% anticipate a decrease, and 16.6% will hold their current levels.
For 39.7%, the average increase will be 25%. Another 25.2% expect a 50% hike and 15.9% predict a 75% increase. In addition, 3.3% foresee a 100% boost and 15.9% will rise by less than 10%.
To put this in perspective, 45% spent between $1 million and $5 million on digital last year, while 35.8% spent $5 million to $10 million. Another 15.9% spent more than $10 million, while 3.3% spent less than $1 million.
Whatever the totals, digital now dominates marketing budgets, with respondents saying it is:
As for volume, 31.8% of those surveyed sent between 60 and 100 million messages last year. That was down from 41.1% in 2019. But 22.5% sent over 120 million, and that’s up from 15.9% in 2021.
In addition, 31.8% sent from 100 million to 120 million messages in 2020, almost flat with the prior year. And 20.5% blasted out 60 million to 80 million messages, versus 19.2% in 2019.
When do they expect to double the number of messages? For 52.3%, that will come within two to three years. But 33.8% say it will happen by the end of 2021. The remainder expect it to take years, and less than a percentage point say it will "never" happen.
The biggest digital lessons of 2020? For 40.4%, it was that email is still their highest-ROI messaging channel.
But 35.8% say they needed to change email service providers in 2020. It was their third-biggest challenge, behind driving new business (52.3%) and re-engaging lapsed customers (47.7%). And many feel they need to change providers this year, although fewer rate doing so as a hurdle to overcome.
The biggest current challenges facing digital marketers? They are:
Here’s what they think they need to make their digital messaging strategy effective in 2021:
MessageGears surveyed 151 B2C marketers at the manager level at brands with $100 million or more in annual revenue and email marketing volume of at least 5 million messages per month. Participants were interviewed in exchange for access to content or a service.