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The Digital Marketing Budget and How to Plan for 2018

2017 Digital Marketing budget plans

Digital Marketing is becoming the next big thing. So with 2020 two years away, it is a great time to start your digital marketing budget now. Now, the big question is where do I start? An article, written by Chris Leone talks about how to budget as a whole. (Read the article here) But this article is just going to focus on the digital marketing and how to make the most bang for your buck.

Which Marketing Strategies & Tactics Are Getting The Best Results?

In a recent survey of 2,500 digital marketers, respondents reported on what marketing activities generated the best ROI.


Marketing technologies and automation are proving effective at bringing together the most effective marketing tactics (email marketing, organic search, social media marketing and content marketing) to achieve better results.


Which Social Media Channels Should I Invest In?

An August 2016 report from eMarketer attempts to project social media penetration by social platform through 2020.

Facebook is expected to remain king, with 90% of social media users utilizing the platform. Instagram is expected to grow, from 32% penetration to 47% by 2020.

Other social channels with baked in advertising features, such as Pinterest and Twitter, will continue to have relatively low penetration, peeking around 33% of users by 2020.

Facebook and Instagram channels [should be used] for social advertising [according to the data].



Specific Digital Channel Investments

In a 2017 report from Hanapin Marketing, 75% of respondents expect to increase their Google Adwords investments in the next 12 months (more than any other digital channel). On the other hand, Facebook, which has become a respectable competitor to paid search, expects to see increased investments by 71% of respondents.

Instagram and Twitter, by comparison, expect to see increased investments from less than half of respondents (46% and 21% respectfully). Snapchat, which has a greener ad platform, was at the bottom of the list, with only 15% of respondents expecting to increase investments into 2018.

This report bodes well for “digital traditionalists,” who continue advocating the importance of search over social channels.



Percentage Of Marketing Budget Spent On Digital

Digital spend is only a portion of total marketing spend for most businesses. [So] for 50% of businesses surveyed, digital represents less than 40% of total marketing spend.


Businesses that rely more heavily on the internet to generate sales (e.g. an eCommerce business). Which invest a greater percentage of their marketing budget towards digital.

For more traditional businesses, which rely on offline AND online activity to fill the sales funnel, a healthy mix of marketing investment is to be expected.

How Much Should Your Firm Budget For Marketing?

The CMO survey offers some answers. In the charts below you’ll see how marketing professionals from all types of firms responded to this question in 2017.


The main takeaways from this survey are as follows:

  • For B2B firms, marketing budgets as a % of firm revenue fell within the 6-7% range
  • For B2C firms, marketing budgets as a % of firm revenue were around 7-9%
  • Marketing budgets as a % of overall firm budgets had been fairly consistent, for the past few years from the 10-11% range.


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