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BizReport : Trends & Ideas archives : September 16, 2009

Social media on marketers' menu for 2010

It looks like social media is on the menu for most marketers next year. A survey of almost 2,000 MediaPost subscribers found that over half plan to have "a presence on social networks" as part of their marketing mix in 2010.

by Helen Leggatt

While email remained the most popular media among marketers for use next year (56.8% "realistically" plan to use it), social media isn't far behind. Over half (56.3%) "realistically" plan to include it in future marketing plans, found the Center for Media Research.

"We expect that the data and insights in the study can assist agencies and other media planners and buyers to make the case for particular media spending next year," said Chuck Martin, Director of the Center for Media Research.

What is not clear from the report, however, is the level of spend the survey respondents intended to allocate to social media. Many companies are aware that they need to be in the social space but are still testing the water and large spends are unlikely until social media becomes a proven and accountable medium.

The resulting list of popular media for 2010 is as follows:

• Email, with 56.8% realistically planning to use it
• Social networks (56.3%)
• Keyword search (49.7%)
• Radio (42.2%)
• Magazines (42.1%)
• Online display (40.5%)
• Event sponsorship (36.9%)
• Rich media display (35.5%)
• Direct mail (34.7%)
• Regional TV (32.8%)
• Regional newspapers (31.7%)
• Out-of-home (31.2%)
• Email sponsorship (29.5%)
• Online video (26.7%)
• Mobile SMS text (26.1%)
• National TV (18.2%)
• National newspapers (14.8%)

Tags: marketing channels, marketing medium, online marketing, social media, social networks

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  • The fact that national newspapers (assuming that includes digital versions) rank dead last in terms of "popular" media seems to reflect a misunderstanding among marketers about the effectiveness of different media types and the interplay between social and traditional media. Frequently, social media conversations are sparked by traditional media content. Bloggers constantly cite traditional media (NYT, for example, is one of the most frequently cited sources among blogs). Even the tired press release still gets sourced by blogs as a basis for content. People then cite those blogs and perhaps traditional media too but the point is the pattern usually starts somewhere.

    Working with our research arm, Context Analytics, we’ve seen enough evidence that tells us this linking pattern is typically the rule, not the exception.

    See this post, “Is Mainstream Media Really Less Relevant?” for more detail:

    Joseph Kingsbury, Text 100

  • Nikol Hillman

    Social media is growing leaps and bounds, but be careful where and who handles it. you want to build brand loyalty and the only way to do that is from someone within, not outsourcing from some company who does not know your core values. GM survived the crash due to social media, because they built a bond with their followers on twitter and facebook, these people were real and human and in the same boat with them not knowing if they would have a job. empathy is a wonderful thing to customers.

    As for putting "your money where your mouth is" there are so many tools out there to see where you are reaping the benefits of social media, Google analytics, twitter counter, and many others can easily provide stats that will show you your success or failures.

  • Are you able to pair spend against these percentages and see where the projected dollars are going? It's one thing to speculate on where they will be putting their activities but if the dollars don't follow there may be an issue of not putting their money where their mouth is. Thanks for any follow-up you can provide.

  • We think that although marketers are correct to reallocate marketing dollars to online communications, we encourage these adopters to use extreme caution when choosing third-party advisors (like advertising agencies), who are similarly jumping on the social media bandwagon. We also advocate that marketers develop a social media strategy based on business objectives before engaging in any online communications.



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