Marketing spend hiked at its greatest rate for 14 years

Freelancers working on marketing and advertising initiatives should notice considerably more pounds in the pot to execute their projects, a first quarter industry survey of 2014 suggests.

Unveiling the latest Bellwether Report, the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising said that companies hiked their marketing budgets in this year’s first three months at the greatest rate since its records began 14 years ago.

The IPA found that a net balance of 20.4% of companies increased their marketing spend (between January and March), up sharply from the 11% that did the same in the fourth quarter of 2013.

The strong reading represents the sixth quarter in a row that marketing budgets have been revised upwards and “rounds off a positive 2013/14 financial year,” as it saw budgets raised to the greatest degree for seven years.

All marketing categories registered upwards revisions, with main media advertising being the primary beneficiary of the uplift, recording a series record net balance of +11.7%.

It also supplanted internet advertising as the best performer of all categories for the first time in almost three years, indicating “a growing confidence and willingness among marketing executives to commit to high-profile campaigns.”

Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit and author of the report, said the finding that companies have used this year’s first three months to upgrade what was already the healthiest budget reading since 2006 was “remarkably” auspicious for the rest of 2014.

“Companies are ramping up their markets and advertising expenditure in the face of growing optimism about the economic outlook,” he said. “As higher marketing spend is also usually accompanied by rising business investment and job creation, this augurs well for economic growth to top 3.0% this year.”


23rd April 2014

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