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Where Should You Put Your 2016 Marketing Budget?

Are you planning to spend more on marketing this year? Your competitors probably are: a whopping 91 percent of companies are either increasing (56 percent) or maintaining (35 percent) their 2015 marketing budget in 2016, according to a recent survey.

Where, exactly, are businesses putting their money? Email marketing is the number-one category — nearly 60 percent of respondents say they plan to increase spending in this area. Close behind are social media, online display advertising and mobile marketing– more than 50 percent of marketers plan to increase spending in each of these areas for 2016, while about 42 percent say they will spend more of the marketing budget on SEO and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. In addition, about one-fourth of respondents will spend more on public relations and direct mail this year.

What types of marketing are on the downturn? More respondents will cut their print, radio and television advertising budgets than plan to increase them in 2016.

When it comes to email marketing, respondents’ biggest goal is to increase subscriber engagement, followed by better segmenting/targeting their customers and making better use of the customer data that they’ve collected. Respondents are also looking to integrate email, social and online marketing for better results.

What’s the takeaway from this report?

  • Email still matters for all types of businesses, but in order to really engage your customers, you need to go beyond the basics. Use email automation, personalization and segmentation to reach out to prospects with targeted information and offers that matter to them, and you’ll get their attention.
  • Think multichannel. Marketing doesn’t take place in silos. All of your marketing efforts should work in harmony, guiding customers to one ultimate destination — your business website. Use social media, display and PPC advertising, and even offline advertising to get them there.
  • Be willing to invest in your marketing budget. You can’t get a lot out of marketing if you don’t put enough into it. Think of marketing as an investment that will pay off rather than an expense with no return. In order to make sure that you’re getting the most from your precious marketing budget, track the results of your marketing campaigns carefully, and change what isn’t working.

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Author information

Maria Valdez Haubrich

Maria Valdez Haubrich is Chief Liaison Officer of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Visit her company’s blog at