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Paid display emerges as the channel with the largest slice of direct response marketers’ budgets, according to the State of Ad Tech 2019 report by Criteo and Euromonitor [report download]. The study, which surveyed over 900 direct response marketers globally, finds that 16% of marketing budgets are being allocated to paid display, with 41% of that part of the budget being used for retargeting.

Following display, social media marketing remains a priority and is allocated the second highest share (14%) of marketing budgets. But traditional marketing remains strong – this comes in third place with 13% and includes activities such as print, direct mail, TV and radio ads.

Social Media Marketing the Top Channel Used for Conversion

The analysis for Criteo’s report places a strong emphasis on conversion, in particular, the top channels and metrics.

While paid display is allocated the largest portion of marketing budgets overall, when it comes to conversion specifically, social media marketing is the most used channel. Over half (53%) of marketers use social media marketing for conversion compared to 43% for paid display advertising.

The data also reveals that conversion is measured in a very broad number of ways. While new revenue comes out as the most frequently used metric (33%), others commonly used include new customer rate (33%), cost per action (30%), total revenue (29%) and cost per qualified visit (29%).

The use of social media as a marketing channel has proven to be effective in various ways. A report from Social Media Examiner found nearly 9 in 10 (87%) of small businesses saying that social media is effective in generating exposure and 8 in 10 (78%) reported increased traffic through the use of social. However, it hasn’t yet seen as widespread success in improving sales (52%), although it’s worth noting that social media ads are becoming a crucial purchase influencer for youth.

About the data: The State of Ad Tech 2019 is based on a survey by research firm Euromonitor International of 901 direct response marketers from around the world.

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