Research data reports that marketers are confident in their marketing strategies, but consumers disagree
According to research conducted by Experian, 82% of marketers in Singapore show confidence in the consistency of their brand messages. This confidence is highest amongst technology companies (87%) and lowest amongst marketers in the retail industry (72%).
Despite the confidence of marketers, only 61% of Singapore consumers think that companies integrate their communications well, pointing to a discrepancy between marketer perception and consumer behaviour.
As the growth of technology accelerates and new channels become instantaneously available, marketers are finding it difficult to cut through the clutter. Over half of marketers in Singapore (53%) acknowledged that it has become more difficult to get messages across to the right people. To overcome this challenge without overwhelming consumers with excess communication, 81% of marketers are becoming more selective in choosing channels that most effectively engage with their customers.
Channel preferences – Online vs. Print
Marketers believe that a company website is the most important source of information for customers to find out about a brand or product (78%). The second and third most important sources of information identified by marketers are social media channels and search engines (both at 57%).
Similarly, consumers also agree that a company website is the most valuable source of information (91%), followed by search engine results and advertising (75%) and social media channels like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter (73%). However, there is a significant difference in the perception of print media’s importance. While marketers do not see it as an important tool (28%), consumers rated it as the second most valuable information source (86%).
Channels delivering the best return on investment
Singapore marketers ranked social media (95%), online advertising (89%) and brand experiences such as stunts and promotions, as “highly effective” or “effective” at delivering the best return on investment (ROI). However, despite marketers’ attention to digital channels, 63% reported that they had previously invested in a new digital approach that did not deliver the anticipated ROI. This was highest among online/digital companies (74%) and financial companies (68%). The key reasons for the failure of a new channel were the lack of understanding of both the target audience (26%) and the channel itself (23%).
Future areas of investment
Over the next 12 months, social media advertising and channel development are the most important areas for investment, with 80% of marketers indicating plans to increase ad spend in these areas. Other digital channels that are likely to receive a budget boost include online advertising (68%), online video advertising (51%) and email marketing (50%). Despite the increased focus on digital media, more than half (53%) of marketers plan to increase investment in traditional channels like print advertising. Similarly, in TV and radio, as much as 38% of marketers plan to increase ad spend.
In the recent years, Singaporean companies have been affected by the global financial crisis. Fortunately, the overall market has recovered strongly and marketers are slowly gaining access to budgets again. For many marketers, the main challenge is trying to identify the most effective use of budgets and determine which channel or combination of channels and campaign messages will deliver the greatest results. By understanding customer preferences, marketers in Singapore can better align their strategies and investment in marketing channels to ensure that they get seen and heard by the right people