Social media and SEO: Where you'll spend your marketing budget this year

Facebook, Twitter, search optimisation are winners as digital marketing increases
Written by Tim Ferguson, Contributor on

Facebook, Twitter, search optimisation are winners as digital marketing increases

Businesses are putting greater emphasis on digital marketing with investment predicted to increase by 17 per cent this year.

Digital marketing will make up 24 per cent of overall marketing spend in 2010, according to research by marketing consultants Econsultancy and ExactTarget which covered more than 1,000 companies, mainly from the US and UK.

The research also found that 28 per cent of organisations surveyed are shifting their marketing budget to digital channels from more traditional areas.

Econsultancy research director, Linus Gregoriadis, suggested companies are most likely to increase investment in social media although search engine marketing and email will continue to be significant.


Companies are thinking of putting more money into off-site social media such as Facebook and Twitter
(Photo credit: respires via Flickr.com under the following Creative Commons licence)

Budgets for offline marketing channels - such as direct mail, telemarketing, print media, television and radio - are likely to decrease. Only 17 per cent of respondents said they would increase budget for print media and 41 per cent said they would reduce investment.

Other stats from the research include 70 per cent of companies saying they plan to increase spending on third party or 'off-site' social media services such as Facebook and Twitter. Just under two-thirds (64 per cent) said they will put more money into social media efforts on their own website or intranet such as blogs and product reviews.

Search engine optimisation is another area that will benefit from greater spending with 64 per cent of companies planning to increase budget for this. Just over half of respondents (56 per cent) said they would do the same for mobile marketing.

Paid search emerged as the best approach for measuring return on investment (ROI) with 54 per cent saying they're good at measuring ROI for pay-per-click search activity. Mobile marketing is less easy to measure, with 43 per cent of respondents rating themselves as poor at measuring ROI.

General restrictions in marketing budget appear to be the main obstacle for increased digital marketing investment, something 40 per cent of companies said was a factor.

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