During a recent Webinar presentation, Donovan Neale-May, Executive Director of the CMO Council (www.cmocouncil.org), outlined the results of the CMO Council’s 2008 Marketing Outlook Survey. According to the CMOs (Chief Marketing Officers) that participated in this survey, direct marketing was the top area of planned expenditure for 2008. This is very exciting news for direct marketers and underlines the importance of their offerings.
Based on all of its sources, InfoTrends estimates that the direct mail market in North America was valued at $61.5 billion in 2005. In terms of total advertising expenditures, this lags only behind television, and is seven times greater than what was spent on Internet advertising.
According to the CMO Council’s 2008 Marketing Outlook, other key spend categories for 2008 include:
- Online (Web sites, SEO, SEM, social media, communities)
- Events and trade shows
Unfortunately, placing a greater emphasis on direct marketing is not without its challenges. CMOs must strike a balance between giving customers what they want and keeping their costs in check. InfoTrends’ survey data indicates that consumers have a high preference for direct mail that is personalized to their needs and interests. In addition, messages will eventually be delivered consistently and paper and Internet communications will be coordinated. The Internet should play a strong role in any direct marketing initiative.
For their part, vendors must find a way to differentiate their offerings and add value so they can stand out in a crowd. Given the growing importance of direct marketing, vendors should work to support these initiatives and become true partners to help CMOs in their day-to-day business activities.
CMOs’ top five reasons for changing outside vendors are:
- Poor creative
- Lack of innovation
- No value-added thinking
- Results and deliverables
- Quality of work