The Social Media Tackle Box by Lionfish

This week, Lionfish launched The Social Media Tackle Box, a weekly series of 12 short briefs on methods, channels, and best practices for using social media to grow your business. Free and open to anyone to subscribe, you can learn more and sign up here:


CMOs Predict Sizable Budget Shift to Digital Marketing


Source: April 30, 2013 by MarketingCharts staff


Fresh on the heels of a report finding that 4 in 10 global marketers around the world will be reallocating budgets to digital marketing (a report which itself came shortly after a US-based studyindicating the same trend), a new study from Accenture has emerged looking at the topic from the perspective of CMOs around the world. And the takeaway is much the same: digital marketing is going to get more of the overall marketing budget next year. About 2 in 3 respondents said they would be devoting at least 25% of their budgets to digital marketing next year, up from 46% who said they would allocate that much this year.

What’s more, the majority of that increase comes in the “more than 50%” category. That is, fully 23% of CMOs surveyed plan to devote the majority of their budgets to digital marketing next year. That’s about double the 11% giving digital that much of the pie this year.

The reorganization of the marketing budget comes at a time when CMOs see big changes on the horizon. 7 in 10 respondents feel that the marketing function will fundamentally change over the next 5 years – with that figure higher among B2B2C (74%) than B2B-only (62%) companies.

CMOs may approach these changes with some amount of trepidation: separate results from the survey indicate that confidence in their preparedness is falling. That is, in 2012, 61% felt prepared, down from 66% in 2011. In 2012, CMOs also indicated more difficulty in improving the efficiency of their marketing operations and improving their workforce’s responsiveness to digital shifts and changing consumers.

In order to tackle those employee-relating challenges, CMOs say they’ll also be working on optimizing their internal skills, by emphasizing some areas over others. For example, next year 24% will dedicate 41-60% of their employees to digital marketing (up from 21% this year) and 26% will dedicate that share of their employee focus to customer analytics (also up from 21%).

That increased attention to digital is warranted due to its “game-changing” nature, say the researchers, for whom CMOs’ “ability to restructure the organization and work horizontally to deliver seamless and relevant customer experiences across all touch points all day and every day will be essential to [their] survival in the global marketplace.”

About the Data: The “2012 CMO Insights” data is based on an online survey across 10 countries with 405 senior executives who are key marketing decision-makers in their companies. Most companies have at least US$1 billion in annual revenues, although corporations in France, Australia, Singapore, and Brazil have revenues of at least US$500 million.

B2C and B2B2C corporations each represented 37% of the sample, with B2B companies the remaining 26%. Financial services was the most heavily represented sector (34%), followed by product companies (30%).

45% of respondents were based in Europe, Africa and Latin America, 40% were located in North America, and the remaining 15% in Asia-Pacific.

61% of Marketers Moving Online Dollars From Direct Response to Brand Advertising

Source: April 22, 2013 by MarketingCharts staff

Vizu-Online-Advertising-Outlook-Apr2013Marketers plan to split their online advertising between direct response and brand advertising initiatives, with 18% of marketers focused on each, and the remaining 64% employing a mix, according to [download page] results from the “2013 Online Advertising Performance Outlook,” a survey fielded by the CMO Council, with findings developed by Vizu. But those advertising dollars look like they’re shifting from direct response to branding initiatives: 61% said they are re-allocating budgets away from direct response to brand advertising initiatives.

Indeed, the proportion of marketers looking to up their digital brand advertising spend outweighs the proportion planning to increase their direct response spending (61% vs. 53%).

Media sellers take a similar outlook: 89% expect sales growth in brand ad sales, versus 80% who believe they’ll see growth in direct response ad sales. Overall, 60% of media sellers believe that most of their online ad dollars will be generated by brand advertising over the coming year.

Driving this growth in brand advertising is increasing consumer consumption of digital media, with the researchers suggesting that “brand marketers (and their advertising dollars) will follow them” to those channels, whether they be online, tablet, mobile, or connected TV.

Looking at where spending increases are most commonly projected, the survey reveals that 70% of brand marketers expect to up their spending on social media advertising, while similar proportions will increase mobile (69%) and video (64%) ad spend. Around half will keep their investments in rich media and standard display flat. Those patterns tally in some regards with recent findings from the IAB and PricwaterhouseCoopers, which showed mobile (+111%) and video (+28) ad revenues growing quickly last year, while display growth was right around average at 13%, and rich media revenues were down about 25%.

Digital branding dollars won’t all come at the expense of direct response, though. 48% of marketers said they will be shifting some budget from TV to online video this year, with 18% reporting their shift to be a “material amount.” That also aligns with recent research from Ooyala, which found that 72% of online video buyers increased their budgets for the medium over the last year, with 39% drawing those budgets from TV, with the amount of TV spending cannibalized averaging out at 100%.

About the Data: The Vizu data is based on findings from the 287 senior brand leaders, 176 agency executives, and 152 publishing representatives that took part in an online survey fielded during January and February 2013.

Almost 2 in 3 American Women Say They Indulge in Retail Therapy

Source: April 3, 2013 by MarketingCharts staff


American women are 61% more likely than men to say they shop and spend money to improve their mood,per results from an Ebates survey. The study reveals that 63.9% of women surveyed say they engage in retail therapy, compared to 39.2% of men.

Overall, slightly more than half of Americans report shopping and spending to improve their mood, with the main triggers being a bad day at work (18.9%), bad news (14.6%), and a fight with a significant other (12.2%). 

While many Americans say they engage in retail therapy, fewer believe it actually improves a person’s mood, though women are twice as likely as men to believe that’s the case (39.2% vs. 20.6%). Interestingly, two-thirds believe that online shopping is better for retail therapy, mainly because they don’t have to leave the house (43.7%), it’s more convenient (42.6%), they don’t have to drive (37.9%), and because there are a wider range of stores to browse (30.8%).

Given American’s love for deals, it’s not too surprising to find that getting a deal makes about 4 in 5 feel best when engaging in retail therapy. Among those, the most popular ways of scoring a deal are shopping during a sale (61.8%), receiving a reward, such as cash back (49.4%), free shipping (45%), and using coupons (44.6%).

According to the survey, the top items women buy for retail therapy are:

  • Clothes (57.9% of women citing this category);
  • Food (34.7%);
  • Shoes (32.4%);
  • Accessories (29.1%); and
  • Books/magazines (28.7%).

For men, the top categories are:

  • Food (28.1%);
  • Electronics (27.4%);
  • Music/movies (26.6%);
  • Clothes (21.5%); and
  • Games/toys (17.6%).

About the Data: The survey was conducted online within the United States by TNS Global via its omnibus product on behalf of Ebates from March 7-10, among 1,000 adults ages 18 and older.

Online, Offline Marketing Budgets Worldwide to Rise in 2013

Source: eMarketer, Mar 20, 2013

ROI remains a challenge, even as more dollars go to digital

Across the board, marketing budgets worldwide are set to surpass increases seen last year, as a positive economic outlook convinces companies to up their investment in outreach.

According to a February 2013 report from Econsultancy sponsored by Responsys, more than seven out of 10 companies worldwide said they would grow their digital marketing budgets this year, up from 68% last year. And 20% of companies planned to increase traditional budgets as well, compared with 16% last year.

In total, more than half of client-side marketers said they would increase their marketing budgets in 2013.

In terms of the proportion of budget devoted to digital, the report found that companies planned to spend an average 35% on online tactics. That’s actually a 1-percentage-point decrease from 2012.

For companies trying to assess the return they’re getting on their marketing investment, digital has seemed to have the measurability advantage over traditional channels for years now. However, this too seems to be changing.

While more client-side marketers said they could measure the return on investment (ROI) from digital tactics (50%) over traditional (47%), the digital figure was down from 55% in 2012, and the continuation of a multiyear decline. By comparison, the percentage able to measure traditional marketing ROI was up from 44% last year.

Digital opportunities are proliferating, and as the data expands and gets more granular, analysis becomes more challenging.

In January 2013, the greatest percentage of companies reported a good ability to measure the ROI of paid search, which is understandable given search’s longstanding role in the online marketing mix. Email marketing, also a stalwart, was just behind paid search. Mobile marketing, social media investment, video advertising and webinars were the channels that proved the most challenging to measure.

Difficulty with measurement doesn’t mean companies won’t invest in new channels, but marketers will continuously assess performance and lean on tactics with results they can quantify

Why Are People Seeking Health Info Online?

Source: eMarketer, MAR 18, 2013

Increases in healthcare costs and shift in demographics drive consumers online to find health info

Seeking health info online has reached saturation among internet users. According to a January 2013 study from Kantar Media, 87% of US internet users looked online for health and wellness research in 2012; there are some key trends driving consumers to the web for this information.

An aging population and shifting demographics are playing a major role in uptake of online health seeking. Boomers are turning 65 at a rate of about 8,000 a day, according to AARP. Unlike the “greatest generation” who used the old patient model, boomers are familiar with technology and inclined to research their health options.

Another factor driving people online to research health info is the increased cost of healthcare. Health insurance plans with high deductibles have led to a decline in patients visiting their physician and an increase in patients putting off medical treatments. In an NPR poll last year, three out of four people who were sick said that cost was a “very serious” problem and nearly half said they felt burdened by what they had to pay out of pocket for care.

Gallup poll released in Decemeber 2012 confirmed these findings, with three out of 10 consumers saying they had put off medical treatment due to cost within the last 12 months. Although between 2007 to 2012 that percentage has stayed approximately the same, the general trend since 2004 is a rising number of people who put off medical care.

Since cost is an important issue for users of healthcare websites, many are now seeking resources that can help them estimate how much their medical expenses will cost. A February 2012 Deloitte survey found that 53% of health seekers said they would use a healthcare site that offered them a tool to tell them how much a health plan would pay for certain treatments or sevices. Patients also expressed a strong interest in seeing quality rankings and satisfaction ratings for specific doctors and hospitals.