Search Marketers See Social, Mobile Rising in Importance

October 6, 2016

hanapinmarketing-search-marketer-budget-increases-oct2016Text ads (86%) and remarketing (65%) are considered the most effective PPC channels by search marketers, finds Hanapin Marketing in its latest annual State of PPC report [download page]. But not far behind, mobile (56%) and social (42%) are gaining steam, with these channels increasing in perceived importance and seeing planned budget hikes.

Some 69% of the hundreds of agencies and brands surveyed said that conversions had increased over the past year for mobile paid search, with 63% saying the same about desktop paid search and 54% about social.

Asked to rate the most important aspects of the digital marketing industry over the past 12 months, brands pointed first to social advertising (52%) and mobile (51%) as having increased in importance. That tracks with MarketingCharts’ own consumer research, which has found consumer response to social and mobile ads to be growing quickly.

For agency respondents to the Hanapin Marketing survey, social advertising (46%), location targeting (44%) and automation software (43%) have seen the biggest gains in importance over the past year.

Social and mobile figure prominently in budget plans, per the report. Almost 3 in 4 respondents (73%) indicated that they will increase their mobile budgets over the next 12 months, and more than two-thirds (69%) shared that sentiment with respect to Facebook. Those two channels trailed only AdWords, set for budget hikes by three-quarters of the respondents.

Aside from Bing (53% increasing), other channels don’t engender quite as much budget enthusiasm. Roughly 4 in 10 plan budget increases for Instagram (41%) and display (39%), but programmatic (22%), native (21%) and Twitter (21%) are further back, as are Pinterest (18%) and Snapchat (15%).

In its summary, Hanapin Marketing notes that Facebook continues to rise, while interest in programmatic remains lacking. The analysts also single out voice search as an area to watch, with 30% of brand respondents (and 33% of agencies) cited this as an important aspect of the past 12 months, and it’s forecast to increase in importance over the next few years.

About the Data: Hanapin Marketing says that it surveyed hundreds of agency and brand respondents, of whom 48% were managers, 35% director-level and above, and 17% specialists. One-third of the sample work for agencies, with retail (technology, CPG, automotive, etc.) industries accounting for another third.

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