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Bumper year for budgets

Bumper year for budgets

2007 is being predicted as a bumper year for marketing budgets and the best in seven years with improving business conditions.


The Q4 2006 Bellwether Report quarterly survey of marketing spend signals a stabilisation of marketing budgets.


Total marketing budgets were revised down in Q4, but only very marginally. However the internet saw by far the strongest upward revision, with the sharpest gain since the first quarter of 2000.


Traditional media still holds the lions share of marketing spend but the internet is now estimated to account for five per cent of all marketing budgets.

Highlights of the Q4 2006 report include:


- Despite improved performance in the second half of the year, 2006 is likely to have seen the weakest growth in marketing communications since 2002.


- In Q4, 17 per cent of companies reported increased total marketing budgets while 18 per cent reported a decrease, so only a marginal net decline.


- Internet marketing budgets out performed all other sectors in Q4, with a net balance of 31.5 per cent of companies reporting an increase across all business sectors.

- Non-traditional marketing, including the internet and sponsorship is so far showing the strongest growth in future spend, followed closely by direct marketing and traditional advertising.


Bellwether Report author, Chris Williamson from NTC Economics says, "What stands out from the Q4 survey is the resurgent growth of marketing signalled for 2007, with spend buoyed by healthy profits and business confidence.


“The strength of marketing spend, and economic growth as a whole, may well exceed many people's expectations.


He adds, “Also, while growth of internet marketing far surpassed that all other categories in Q4, main media advertising is by no means ready to be written off, with main media budgets set to show the strongest growth for seven years in 2007."


The Bellwether report contains detailed analysis of the UK’s marketing economy, based on a survey of 250 companies, representing all key business sectors.

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