The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) has found that two-thirds of marketers have, in response to the current economic environment, shifted their emphasis to more short-term strategies. These were some of the findings of a Brand-Building study of 129 marketers, which took the form of an online survey.
Yet in spite of the short-term tactics, marketers are already planning increased activities for when the recession ends. 68% will be increasing their media budgets, 41% increasing social networking/word-of-mouth, and 40% allocating more money to innovation and testing/learning. Almost three-quarters of respondents admitted that they would ideally like to implement these additional marketing activities three to six months before the recession ends.
The survey found that few marketing initiatives had been postponed or cancelled outright, but many had suffered from reduced budgets. Those activities that are being maintained during the recession include:
- Research and development (47%)
- Public relations (42%)
- Innovation/test/learn budgets (33%)
- Promotion activities (33%).
A number of activities have been increased over recent months, including:
- Pricing deals (47%)
- Social networking/word-of-mouth (26%)
- Public relations efforts (23%)
When compared to the results of previous surveys, many traditional media channels have suffered:
- Television (down from 80% in February 2007 to 64% in April 2009)
- Magazines (down from 67% to 51%)
- Radio (down from 36% to 30%)
- Outdoor (down from 35% to 26%)
- Newspapers (down from 36% to 19%)
These results are fairly representative of current sentiment in the wider marketing community. Many organizations are shying away from traditional media and focusing on online opportunities. Indeed, a recent survey by B2B International showed around half of marketers planning to increase their e-marketing spend in 2009, with many stating that online marketing had already proven itself to be a successful strategy in the face of recessionary pressures. More than a quarter were planning increases in their PR activity. On the flip side, around half planned to cut expenditure in the more traditional areas of tradeshows/events and magazine advertising.
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