Marketers have a pool of options to choose from when deciding where to dedicate their dollars. But this year, they’re diving into the digital swim lane. Consider the following data from Econsultancy and Oracle Responsys’ “Marketing Budgets 2015 Report”: Digital marketing and e-commerce professionals are spending 38% of their overall marketing budgets on digital. In addition, 77% of respondents intend to increase their budgets during the coming year, and 79% plan to up their spend on digital marketing technology specifically.
When it comes to paid versus organic media, marketers are looking to make a bigger splash in the latter. According to the report, 61% of respondents are increasing their paid media budgets, while 67% are boosting their owned media spend; however, this spending figure cannonballs to 71% for earned media.
Content marketing is another area that’s staying afloat in terms of budget allocation. Nearly three fourths of digital marketing and e-commerce professionals (73%) say they’re increasing this budget in 2015, according to the report. In fact, content marketing takes the silver in terms of digital marketing budget allocation, comprising 10% of the dedicated dollars, just behind paid search at 13%.
Of course, if marketers want to truly lap the competition, they’ll need support from the C-suite. Fortunately, C-suite executives seem more than willing to cheer on marketers’ initiatives. Seventy-two percent of respondents say that it’s become easier to acquire boardroom buy-in for increased digital marketing budgets—up from 64% in 2014, according to the report.
One possible reason: Marketers are diving into these digital initiatives with specific objectives. Many are trying to create a more connected experience for their customers. Consider the following: 74% of respondents agree or strongly agree that they’re working toward delivering a cohesive customer experience rather than freestyle, standalone campaigns. In fact, survey participants are 35% more likely to increase their budgets for cross-channel/multichannel campaign management technology today than they were last year. But some marketers are still floundering when it comes to creating winning customer experiences for both new and existing customers. According to the report, 38% of respondents cite acquisition as a strong investment focus this year, versus 34% in 2014; only 19% say the same for retention—a 1% increase from last year.