Increase Your Digital Marketing Budget or You Won’t Compete

Developing a dynamic and cohesive marketing strategy has become essential for businesses that want to profit in today’s competitive marketplace.  In particular, they need to implement strong digital marketing strategies to be successful, as their customers are increasingly turning to the internet to inform their purchase decisions.

Several trends are shaping the direction of digital marketing in 2014 and beyond; aside from increasing mobile adoption (which is fueling the growth of m-commerce), an increasing number of consumers are becoming multi-platform users – those consumers who use both mobile and desktop devices to consume digital media.  These consumers became the majority of digital media consumers in the United States in April 2013, representing 56% of digital media consumers, and this trend is occurring in New Zealand too.

Meanwhile, the growth and influence of social media websites—such as YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn—have transformed strategic social media marketing, turning it into a vital and lucrative aspect of digital marketing. Consequentially, many of the largest companies are evolving enterprise-class social media marketing platforms and infrastructure to help them consolidate their social media marketing campaigns.

Companies understand that if they want to expand their brands, increase their sales, and grow their businesses quickly, they need to invest money into their digital marketing efforts. Both your prospects and existing customers have moved online, where they’re actively searching for different products and services, and are reading the recommendations of friends and other consumers. Businesses that aren’t visible in the online world will lose out to savvier businesses that have increased the focus and intensity of their digital marketing efforts.

Your Competitors are Increasing their Marketing Budgets

The latest reports indicate that more marketers are increasing their overall marketing budgets in 2014 than maintaining or decreasing their overall marketing budgets. According to the fifth annual Marketing Budgets Report, 60% of US client-side respondents say their companies are increasing their overall marketing budgets in 2014—which is significantly higher compared to 54% in 2013 and 45% in 2012.

As for digital marketing budgets, the number of supply-side companies increasing their spending has been remarkably consistent since 2009, and is 71% this year. Digital budgets have largely been insulated from spending cuts as more companies focus on their digital channels to drive business growth, as well as leads and sales conversions.

Budget Allocation across Digital Marketing Channels

When it comes to budget allocation, the lion’s share of budget increases will go to content marketing, followed by SEO and mobile marketing for acquisition in 2014. According to the fifth annual Marketing Budgets Report, 74% of client-side responding companies stated they will be increasing their content marketing budgets in 2014, 63% stated they will be increasing their search engine optimization budgets in 2014, and 63% stated they will be increasing their mobile marketing budgets in 2014.

On the other hand, the digital channels marketers will most likely be decreasing their expenditure in 2014 are paid search and online display advertising for acquisition/engagement. Meanwhile, the majority of supply-side respondents stated that their clients are planning to increase their budgets in content marketing (80%), mobile marketing for acquisition (67%), and mobile marketing for engagement/retention (61%) in 2014.

According to Gartner’s Digital Marketing Spending Survey, overall expenditure for digital advertising will grow in 2014 as brands, agencies and publishers invest in diversified channels in order to deliver more relevant advertising to target audiences. The use of programmatic media, which allows marketers to target their desired audience and automate bidding rules for ads based on the business value they deliver, is a major impetus for this growth.

Content Marketing Expenditure is on the Rise for all Marketers

High-quality content will become increasingly vital to the success of businesses in 2014, as consumers use search engines to look for products and services, and find the answers to their queries. Leads on the lookout for particular products and services use the internet as their first port of call; they check out business websites and social media profiles, and sign up for newsletters to get more valuable information.

According to the Content Marketing Institute’s “B2C Content Marketing 2014 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends” report, 90% of B2C marketers are using content marketing this year, compared with 86% last year. Furthermore, 60% of B2C marketers are planning to increase their content marketing budget over the next 12 months. Of this percentage, 15% are planning to significantly increase their content marketing budgets over the next 12 months.

As for B2B marketers, the report shows that 93% of B2B marketers are using content marketing in 2014, compared with 91% last year. 58% of B2B marketers are planning to increase their content marketing budget over the next 12 months, while more B2B marketers are planning to increase their content marketing budgets in 2014, compared with last year (54%).

The Content Marketing Institute’s report also stated that all B2B marketers are planning to increase their content marketing spending at similar rates. Meanwhile, more small companies (with 10-99 employees) than large companies (with 1,000 or more employees) are planning to increase their content marketing budgets over the next 12 months (60% versus 52%).

Adjust your Marketing Budget to Fuel your own Growth

Businesses that want to expand their brands, increase their sales and grow their businesses quickly will need to calibrate their marketing budgets to meet these goals. The majority of your competitors are increasing their overall marketing budgets, especially in digital channels like content marketing, search engine optimization, mobile marketing, email marketing and social media marketing.

Unfortunately, doing exactly what your competitors are doing won’t be enough. If you want to surpass your competitors, you’ll need to hire a professional digital marketing agency with a proven track record of success and years of experience. In other words, you should hire us!

We’ll help you identify the ideal marketing budget for your organization in order to drive your marketing objectives and business goals. By establishing an optimal marketing budget, your business will become more competitive and profitable in an increasingly cutthroat marketplace. We’ll also develop a dynamic marketing strategy for your business that will drive growth, boost your profits, expand your brand online and increase your leads and sales conversions.

We’re really strong advocates for content marketing, SEO mobile marketing, email marketing and social media marketing (esp Facebook marketing and targeted ads, Google +, YouTube and blogs).  Most websites have far too little content in them and they suffer from a low rank for this reason.  Searchers value informative content.

Your digital marketing budget should be recouped with just a few extra sales each month.  We link your marketing budget with targets for leads and sales to ensure the spend results in a positive ROI.  Our digital marketing products secure leads from all the online media channels and direct them to your website. We track your website leads by channel in real time so action can be taken to optimize performance and your ROI.

Email us at chris@pattersondigitalmarketing.com or call us now at (09) 449 1005 or (027) 489 5009 to set a digital marketing budget and ROI to take your business to the next level.  Content marketing, SEO and social media should be the minimum you consider in order to compete strongly in your market.

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Chris Kirkham