Guess Who's Planning to Spend Big in Mobile? CPG Advertisers

Highest Level of Overall Optimism Since 2007

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Historically, advertisers in the consumer packaged-goods category have been late adopters in digital marketing mediums, investing little until they could prove, for example, that digital advertising can indeed sell soap.

The latest trend that CPG advertisers seem ready to latch onto? Mobile advertising.

Two-thirds of CPG advertisers and their agencies say they plan to increase spending in mobile advertising over the next 12 months, according to an Advertiser Perceptions semiannual survey of more than 1,200 people involved in deciding how ad budgets are allocated. Only 2% of those same CPG advertisers said their mobile budgets will shrink. CPG advertisers are also the most optimistic group about increasing spending in digital video.

Overall, advertisers and agencies said mobile was the medium they were most confident would see increased spending this year, with 64% saying they planned to increase spending in mobile advertising over the next 12 months. Still, a third of that group say ad spending in the medium would remain the same in 2013.

The survey also found that overall advertiser optimism is at its highest level since 2007, as judged by these reports.

As for social media, 49% of those surveyed said they would increase spending on those networks, down from 59% last year. Another 44% said their social-media budgets would remain the same -- a bit of a surprise considering that Twitter, for example, seems poised to really ramp up its ad business.

The study also displays a disconnect in optimism and pessimism between marketer and agency. Agencies, for example, are significantly more optimistic in the increase in mobile ad spending than marketers are. At the same time, they are also more pessimistic about national newspaper ad spending than their marketer counterparts.

The survey and its results come with a couple of caveats. First, the results indicate what decision-makers say their budgets will look like over the next 12 months, but spending projections can obviously change. Further, some of the optimism seems to contradict 2013 outlooks given recently by holding company CEOs. Just this month, for example, WPP Group CEO Martin Sorrell said 2013 would be a "challenging year."

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