November 15, 2011

Marketing Research Chart: The promise of social marketing ROI driving client investment

SUMMARY: Agencies and consultancies are on the front lines of social media innovations. We asked how their clients perceived the promise of social media investments to produce a measurable ROI for 2011.

Find out their answers in this week’s marketing research chart, based on survey results from more than 3,300 marketers.
by Sergio Balegno, Director of Research

Chart: How clients perceive the value of social marketing at budget time

Q. Which statement best describes how your typical client organization perceives social marketing's ability to produce a return on investment (ROI) at budget time?

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How agencies and consultancies think their clients perceive social marketing’s ability to produce ROI is remarkably on target. We found 20% of CMOs -- the senior executives responsible for hiring agencies -- feel social marketing is producing measurable ROI for their organizations, which will drive continued investment in this tactic. Agencies and consultancies responded with the same percentage.

While agencies and consultancies were accurately able to read the minds of clients regarding the perception of social marketing’s ability to produce ROI, their crystal ball was off when it came to client spending on this tactic in 2011.

While 78% of agencies and consultancies expected their clients to increase expenditures on social marketing by up to 50%, only 52% of clients planned to be as generous as agencies and consultancies expected.

These statistics are optimistic -- social marketing spending growth is eminent, as evidenced by their perception of social media ROI. However, marketers remain conservative about their implementation, and some clients are reluctant to change.

"We have gone from none of our clients interested in social media management campaigns to it being our number one B2B product. We need to do it better and be the experts for our customers and we look to sites like MarketingSherpa to help us do that."

- Agency insight on client campaigns

For additional research data and insights about email marketing, download and read the free Executive Summary from MarketingSherpa’s 2011 Social Marketing Benchmark Report.

Be sure to reserve your social media toolkit today. This all-in-one bundle gives you the tools you need to structure and optimize your social marketing program.

Useful links related to this chart

The MarketingSherpa 2011 Social Marketing Benchmark Report

Social Media Marketing: You value (and earn ROI on) what you pay for

Social Media Marketing: How to optimize the customer experience to benefit from word-of-mouth advertising

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