By Jeff Zwelling, CEO
A recent TechCrunch article recapped some of the highlights from ZenithOptimedia’s study that predicted global ad spend in 2013 will grow 3.5 percent, reaching $503 billion at the end of the year. The study provides specific numbers and percentages about where the advertising industry is headed, and which channels are increasing and decreasing, providing valuable insights for marketers. However, there is a temptation to interpret these numbers as cold, hard facts. It is too easy for marketers to read this data and blindly apply the findings to their own campaigns, without first completing the necessary research.
According to the study, 22 percent of all U.S. ad spend is going towards digital ads. However, this does not mean every marketer should shift 22 percent of his budget to digital ads. This is a dangerous road. Marketers that apply general statistics to specific campaigns are not doing their brands justice, and are not efficiently optimizing their campaigns to make the best use of their budgets. Some marketers should be putting less of their budget towards digital and others should be putting more, but it is safe to say that the correct amount varies depending on the industry and target market.
With all of this chatter about the rise of digital and mobile ad spend, it is tempting to start throwing ad dollars to digital and join the revolution. But marketers need to stop and think before they hop on that train. It is possible that some online and mobile channels are gaining popularity due to the misconception that it is easier to measure digital media, making marketers and advertisers more confident in this media and therefore more comfortable putting money towards it. Marketers need to implement proper cross-channel and cross-device measurement techniques that bring measurement capabilities to traditional media in addition to digital media to ensure they’re creating marketing strategies that fit their specific brands, rather than simply jumping on the digital bandwagon.
Going all digital is too predictable. Knowing which ads across all platform perform best is smart and more profitable.