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Measurement a challenge despite ‘significant’ ad spend shift to digital in 2020

Ad spend is set to shift significantly from print to digital media in 2020, but digital measurement remains a challenge for marketers. About 81% of 500 senior-level marketers surveyed somewhat agreed or strongly agreed that it is tough to assess digital channels, given blind spots in measurement, according to the “Getting Media Right: Marketing in Motion” report by Kantar.

Among the digital channels, marketers expect to see an “extraordinary increase” of their media budget in online video (84%), social networks (70%), podcast (63%), advanced TV (54%), and online display (52%). This is a sharp contrast against print media, where 72% of marketers say they will decrease spend in magazines, while 60% will reduce their investment in newspaper advertising.

However, 76% of marketers are having challenges in measuring cross-channel performance. About one in every five advertisers have not yet integrated their strategies across channels and platforms. Marketers globally still struggle with integrated campaigns, but APAC marketers are having more success. Some 88% of APAC marketers say they have integrated their marketing campaigns, while only 75% of global marketers indicated so.

“This lack of alignment means advertisers are missing out on opportunities – both for more cohesive campaigns but also for creating marketing experiences that flow across all touch points and interactions with customers,” said the report. About 29% of the marketers in APAC expressed that they do not have the right balance and synergies between digital and offline media.

According to Pablo Gomez, Kantar’s chief digital officer for APAC, measurement remains one of the biggest issues for the region, especially online-offline cross measurement, which is critical in a region dominated by TV and mobile. “The results go to show just how dynamic and complex APAC is as a region. Marketers here are faced with the challenge of rapidly increasing their digital investment, whilst at the same time, ensuring there is integration with offline media,” he added.

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Challenges in measurement

The report also revealed potential challenges in cookieless advertising. More than a third of marketers (36%) have not begun preparations for a cookieless world. Some 43% are concerned about providing impactful measurement in a cookieless world, while 48% expects the inability to track digital media via cookies to disrupt the industry.

Meanwhile, while almost all marketers in the region (89%) recognise the importance of balancing short-term sales with long-term brand building, only 61% of marketers are using both short- and long-term measurements. Additionally, 32% still rely solely on short-term sales results.

Global head of media effectiveness at Kantar, Jane Ostler, said to prepare for the huge changes in the industry ahead and make headway in proving ROI, marketers need to create a framework to monitor impact on business and brand metrics. “That means harmonising measurement tools, building an infrastructure that enables measurement across the diverse marketing mix, and creating meaningful insights to improve performance across all channels,” she explained.

(Photo courtesy: 123RF)

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