The Stats Old School Advertising Doesn’t Want You to See
Where are advertising dollars flowing? It’s a question of supreme importance to social marketing agencies and small business firms alike; after all, advertising and marketing expenditures speak volumes about what works, what doesn’t work, what is trending up and what is trending down. Unfortunately, it’s been a tough year for traditional advertisers but that doesn’t mean small business owners should suffer alongside. Today’s article puts it all on the table and shares the stats the old school advertising moguls don’t want you to see!
Are your advertising dollars being spent in the optimal manner? What media marketing methods are trending up and which are dying a slow death? Today we are going to disclose the stats and facts old school advertisers don’t want you to see. But first, a word of caution…don’t say you weren’t warned…the facts are frightening!
Why Advertising Venues Matter
Before we delve into the depths of despair, let’s take a few moments to clarify why advertising venues matter. As a social media management and marketing firm, we will admit to having a few favorites but that is because we have seen firsthand what works…and what doesn’t work. Few things are more frustrating than a small business owner struggling to survive while they “think” they are doing all the right things. More often than not, the quality of work as well as product or service line is superb…it’s the advertising and marketing which is falling short of expectations. What has worked in the past may be less effective in the face of alternative advertising options; in fact, some may be downright past their prime. Spending advertising dollars in a declining or dying venue may work if it takes advantage of reduced cost and fewer competitors but don’t be deceived by old statistics! More than a few business owners have found that antiquated advertising numbers do not tell the whole story.
Thriving or Barely Surviving?
Before putting all your advertising eggs into one basket, take time to evaluate the overall TREND of the venue. Is this form of media trending up or down? This alone is perhaps one of the most important – and easily overlooked – concerns surrounding the decision on which media venue to use. Not surprisingly, social media marketing is trending up…way up! Heck, it’s practically on an exponential growth trajectory both globally and domestically. Without a doubt, social media is hot, hot, hot! Business owners need to know whether their advertising dollars will thrive or barely survive; if the media venue is growing then chances are users are more receptive to the message, eager and willing to interact with others and share the message. On the other hand, declining modes are a race to the bottom. Each and every quarter your advertising dollars are reaching fewer and fewer people who are already saturated with the message and the medium.
Unless you are getting a BIG discount, avoid declining media outlets. On the other hand, trending patterns are not the only concern. Actual annual spending patterns also provide significant insight. There is power in numbers and the fact of the matter is simple; venues that are able to attract more clients do so because they have proven value. Those that do not, will continue to lose ground. In short, there is safety in numbers. Now, don’t get us wrong, a cost analysis or ROI should be performed for each individual situation. Sometimes reduced competition coupled with incentives or discounts can make it worthwhile to pursue a seemingly slow outlet. On the other hand, the reverse isn’t always true. Failure to participate in an upward trending, highly competitive and strong growth venue could be a recipe for total disaster. Sooner or later, the declining sales and lackluster viewership will force the closure of the prior as the prior upward trending venue becomes mature and takes its place.
So, wondering which venues are tacking upward and which aren’t?
The Good: With over 12 percent annual growth, the Internet remains the fastest growing and most rapidly expanding advertising medium. It will come as no surprise that social media marketing represents one of the most significant growth areas within the entire segment. Remember, this is year over year growth making it an especially impressive stat!
The Bad: Were you expecting more venues listed in the “good” section? Frankly, so were we! Apparently this is the year that disparities really have started to show. Television managed to rank 2nd with a 4% annual increase. It’s a mature industry at best but online television is starting to take a toll on advertisers and viewers. The demographics are changing yet the cost has remained fairly stable.
Radio comes in 3rd with an underwhelming 2.6% growth rate in North America where it has been in a steady decline for years. There is a silver lining in radio advertising; global growth. It tops 20% in some regions but tends to be an expensive option for most small business concerns.
Outdoor advertising experienced a 4.4% growth rate but is such a small and insignificant portion of the total industry as to still rank 4th.
The Ugly: This hurts just to report…Print advertising including magazines and newspapers failed to grow whatsoever. In fact, it declined putting even more pressure on a costly and largely ineffective marketing method which has been struggling to stay afloat for years. Subscription rates are down, cost is up, content is stale by the time it reaches the viewer and readers are all but immune to impact after years of skipping through advertisements.