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BizReport : Advertising : July 14, 2014

Report: More brands turn to digital to grow business

An increasing number of local, national and international businesses are turning to the digital space to grow their business. According to a new survey of marketing professionals by Extole and GigaOm most marketers are using digital to increase brand awareness, customer acquisition and conversion rates. Here's how they're doing it:

by Kristina Knight

Look for more ad budget dollars to be pushed into the digital space in the coming year. That is the takeaway from a new study which indicates more than half of brands will increase digital spending in 2014. What is perhaps most interesting is where they are placing those budget dollars - and why.

Email remains a strong contender, although it is one of the oldest forms of online marketing, while social is building fast - even though many engaging in social marketing say they can't pinpoint a valid ROI from those efforts. Also coming of age are Content Marketing (64% use regularly) and referral marketing as well as affiliate marketing.

Some interesting findings from the Extole/Gigaom study include:

• 60% of brands say they'll increase digital ad spending this year
• 56% say email is their 'most effective' customer retention tool
• Email is also cited as the workhorse for brand awareness, customer acquisition and conversion
• Most say they'll increase social but report social 'is difficult to prove' for ROI

Meanwhile, a growing number of marketers are using referral tactics however only about 39% say they regularly employ these tactics. Of those who do, nearly half (43%) say they acquire about one-third of their customers using referral tactics.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: advertising, digital marketing, ecommerce trends, Extole, Gigaom, trends

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