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Use of digital media rising

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Four out of five marketers are integrating their marketing campaigns, according to the Direct Marketing Association, and while digital media has been growing exponentially, tried and true offline media remains strong. These were among the findings in “The Integrated Marketing Media Mix” report published last month by the DMA. It is the first report of its kind undertaken by the trade association. Overall, the DMA found that as marketers integrate their media campaigns, they are adding e-mail and other digital media. At the same time, offline media remain extremely important to integrated campaigns. Of the campaigns discussed in the report, 79.1% used e-mail, which led all other media, but 75.4% used direct mail. The report is based on a 25-question online survey conducted in April with 574 marketer respondents. “Marketers are using a whole range of channels, whereas they may have concentrated on just offline media before,” said Yoram Wurmser, research manager for the DMA and author of the report. Wurmser said that marketers typically use an average of four media channels. One b-to-b marketer interviewed, Eastman Kodak Co., uses an integrated marketing strategy, but the number of channels used depends on the campaign. “We cross a number of channels,” said Jeff Hayzlett, chief business development officer for Kodak. “We take every single project now and put them across a grid and ask ourselves, "How do we deploy these?' It could be as few as a couple [of media channels] or it could be as many as eight or nine, depending on the enormity and complexity of the campaign. Hayzlett said those channels are typically a mix of direct mail, telemarketing, radio and broadcast TV, as well as online channels such as e-mail, search marketing, social networking and video. Formalizing that strategy is currently a work in progress, Hayzlett said. “We're in the process of setting this [integrated marketing strategy] up in a more structured way where it is more automated and you don't have to reinvent it each time.” Initially, he said, the goal of the company's integrated strategy was to be effective and, now that that part is well in hand, the next step is to “be efficient.” According to the DMA, among media channels, direct mail often sets the tone for integrated campaigns. In the 57.4% of campaigns that stagger the introduction of media, almost half (47%) of the media launches in the first phase were direct mail. Direct mail use fell after the initial touch, typically replaced by e-mail and the phone. Direct mail also figures prominently in terms of impact on revenue. 65.3% of respondents said they track the impact on revenue of individual media, and they attributed 29.0% of the revenue generated from the campaign to direct mail, followed by e-mail, with 21.6% of revenue. However, in terms of media efficiency, digital media scored high. E-mail ROI in particular was almost twice the revenue share (1.93) relative to its share of the budget. Of offline media, only telephone did better than average (1.20). Overall, marketers are adding new media rather than subtracting traditional media, according to the study. When asked about how their media use has evolved over the past three years, marketers clearly indicated they are using more digital media: 75.8% are using more e-mail, 61.1% are using more online video and 62.9% are using more search engine marketing. Of all media, only catalogs are being used less now compared with three years ago, and even with catalogs, just 27.1% of marketers report a decline. As to snail mail, 38.4% of marketers report more direct mail use. Some marketer respondents classified as “expert” by the DMA are beginning to move away from snail mail, though. More reported using it less (37.4%) than said they use it more (32.0%). In terms of future use, marketers in the study predict a continuation of these trends. They will basically continue their steady use of offline media with the exception of catalogs, and increase their use of digital media, which includes e-mail, search, banner ads and mobile. Motorola Corp. indicated that it is definitely increasing its use of digital media as part of its integrated strategy and will continue to do so, but the channels used are highly dependent on geography. “The tactics that work best for us really depend on the region of the world you are talking about,” said Belinda Hudmon, director-interactive and relationship marketing at Motorola. “In certain parts of Asia and Latin America, direct mail is a key avenue for us. It still works. In other countries where the bandwidth is higher, e-mail is more effective and digital tools in general are more effective. We map our integrated strategies to how our audiences are looking for information from various sources, and those have been changing and evolving over time.” Hudmon said digital in general is playing a bigger role, with search and e-mail figuring prominently, but print still has its place as an effective avenue to generate awareness. M
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