Only 44% of US marketers are truly happy (giving a rating of 8 or higher on a 10-point scale) with their primary marketing agency, according to data compiled in March 2011 by agency/client relationship advisers RSW/US. The “2011 New Business Report: A Client’s Look Ahead at Agencies” shows that a combined 68% are happier than average (a rating of 6 or higher).
Historical data from RSW/US indicates the current level of happiness (rating of 8 or higher) isn’t very different than the levels seen in recent years’ studies. In 2008, 41% of marketers were “happy” and in 2009-2010, 47% stated they were “happy” with their current firm.
Only 55% of marketers state they would consider using their primary agency again if they were to put their account up for review (rating of 8 or higher on a 10-point likelihood scale). While in past RSW/US surveys this question only inquired about the likelihood of using the agency again (and didn’t put it in the context of a “review”), in 2008, 62% of marketers rated this question an “8-10.” In the 2009-2010 survey, 69% of Marketers rated this question an “8-10.”
RSW/US analysts say this year’s fall-off to 55% suggests that either the loyalty among marketers for their agencies is diminishing and/or the agency’s value offering to the marketer is dropping.
Only 18% of marketers believe traditional, full service firms have solid digital skills. This compares to 29% of Marketers believing digital firms have solid traditional (full service) skills. RSW/US analysts say it is not terribly surprising that marketers think more of digital firms’ traditional marketing skills than they do about full service firms’ strengths in the digital space, given the requirements of digital marketing are more technical and specialized than general full service advertising support.
Interestingly, 67% of marketers do not (on the whole) think digital firms can survive as “digital only,” believing they need to deliver more full service offerings if they are going to maintain relevance.
Although currently most marketers give the edge in performing across digital and full service formats to digital firms, when asked to look to the future, the largest percentage see full service firms coming out ahead. Fifty percent of marketers believe that during the next three to five years, full service firms are more likely to win digital assignments, as compared to only 28% of marketers believing digital firms are the more likely winners of full service assignments.
The breakdown of media spend in digital is focused mainly on traditional online media choices, according to a June 2010 study from digital marketing agency Razorfish. Online media outlets that have existed for a long period of time, such as verticals, search, ad networks and portals, received the bulk of digital ad dollars spent in 2009. Verticals and individual sites received the highest share of digital ad spending, slightly more than 30%. These were followed by search sites and directories (25%), ad networks (20%), and portals (about 12%).
Meanwhile, no form of “new media” even obtained 5% of digital ad spending in 2009. The most popular form of new media, social media display, received about 4% of digital ad spending. Data brokers, ad exchanges and mobile all received about 2%, with other new media such as non-display social media and digital out-of-home (DOOH) barely registering. Interestingly, email, arguably the oldest form of traditional digital media, had one of the smallest shares of ad spending.
About the Data: The “2011 New Business Report: A Client’s Look Ahead at Agencies” was completed by 174 key marketing decision makers from across the US during March 2011. This study was commissioned by RSW/US.
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