Online advertising budgets: 5% for Facebook in 2012

Marketers are expected to increase their budgets allocated for Facebook from 2.7 percent in Q4 2011 to 5 percent by the end of 2012. Are you using Facebook to advertise?

Brands are continuing to invest in Facebook advertising and focusing on increasing the number of Likes on their Facebook Pages. The amount companies spend on social media advertising is now additive to existing budgets rather than subtracting from other digital media channels, according to the 10-page "Global Q4 2011 Digital Marketing Performance Report" by online advertising firm Efficient Frontier.

More specifically, Facebook spend market share reached 2.7 percent of biddable online advertising spend in Q4 2011. Furthermore, Efficient Frontier estimates Facebook's slice will reach 5 percent of all online advertising spend by the end of 2012.

The firm believes brands will continue to pump more and more money into Facebook as they get better at acquiring Facebook fans on their Pages and engaging them through various campaigns (given that Facebook wants to put ads in the News Feed, that trend is a very likely one). Brands are already increasing their number of Likes by 9 percent every month.

While Google+ and LinkedIn are both expected to have a positive impact on social spending and the growth of the competitive social networking space, Facebook is predicted to remain the dominant social network and social publisher for advertisers in 2012. That may be, but another trend says retailers already value Google+ more than Facebook and Twitter.

"Facebook continues to be where marketers are placing new bets by adding advertising spend with a focus on fan acquisition," David Karnstedt, President and CEO of Efficient Frontier, said in a statement. "Mobile search advertising is also an area of significant investment, growing to 7-8% from 2% a year ago. We should expect both channels to grow significantly in 2012."

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