Marketers May be Underinvesting in Email, Social

April 25, 2013

This article is included in these additional categories:

Digital | Email | Mobile Phone | Social Media

PRI-Marketing-Channel-Effectiveness-Comparison-Apr2013A new report [download page] from the Platt Retail Institute, conducted in association with the American Marketing Association and sponsored by hybris software, compares marketers’ rankings of various channels’ budget allocations against the channels’ perceived importance and ROI. The study reveals that of the 11 channels identified, email marketing ranks 3rd in current importance and 5th in return on investment, but only 8th in budget allocation. A similar pattern emerges for social media. That is, while ranked 4th in both current importance and ROI, the channel ranks only 6th in budget allocation.

Marketers may be overspending on call centers, though. This channel is ranked 3rd for budget allocation, but only 6th for current importance and 8th for ROI. Other channels that may be getting too much spending include mass media and direct mail and catalog.

Respondents to the survey currently consider their company websites to be their most important channel, and project them to remain that way in the future. Social media is expected to become more important in the future relative to other channels, as is mobile. Among the various social media marketing channels, Facebook is perceived as the most important, followed by LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

About the Data: The study describes its methodology as follows:

“Data was collected through a survey of 859 respondents, including both AMA members and non-members, regarding multi-channel and omni-channel marketing. In January 2013, a request to participate in the online survey was sent to the AMA audience using a distribution list provided by the Association. Email to the Association’s list was the primary means of distributing the survey, supported by social media posts on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

The survey comprised 21 questions covering, among other things, respondents’ company size, industry, marketing budget, and interest in or level of current implementation of multi-channel and omni-channel marketing. Prior to distribution, the survey was piloted by a sample of individuals led by PRI. Survey revisions were made accordingly until the final version of the survey was obtained. Responses for six of the 21 survey questions use a Likert-type scale.2 In addition, the survey included two ranking questions, four open-ended questions, one dichotomous question, and seven multiple-choice questions. Data was accumulated anonymously and analyzed using SPSS statistical analysis software version 21.

Of 859 total respondents, most completed the survey by email (55 percent). The most common form of social media used to complete the survey was LinkedIn (23 percent).

A majority of the companies surveyed operate in the United States/Canada (59 percent) or Europe (14 percent).

Fourteen percent of the firms surveyed had annual revenue in excess of $500 million. Five percent of the firms had annual e-commerce revenue in excess of $150 million.

Survey respondents mainly operate in 20 industries.”

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