Wondering how the COVID-19 crisis is impacting marketing budgets? So were we. What we found was surprising.
Update: In the period April – May, 2020 we did interviews with top marketers on what they are seeing as opportunities, trends and positive examples. The article has been updated with their insights.
In it we’ll show:
- How content marketers are facing the COVID-19 challenges
- How marketing budgets are changing due to COVID-19
- Industries Most Likely to be Affected during this crisis
Highlights: Executive Summary – What you’ll find in the article:
- 58.4% of marketers expect no change or increase in their marketing budget due to COVID-19.
- 38.1% of marketers expect a decrease in their marketing budget due to COVID-19.
- Industries Most Likely to Maintain or Increase Budget
|About this data: Methodology
|The recent survey, “How is the COVID-19 Crisis Affecting Your Marketing Budget,” launched via LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter & E-mail, was designed to help better understand what impact the COVID-19 pandemic is having on marketers and their budgets. The results we are sharing here are from over 65 senior-level content marketing leaders from both B2B and B2C companies from the period of March – present (ongoing). The results so far were interesting, as were many of the quotes and comments from the marketers who responded.
The survey was designed to help better understand what marketers were really going through when it came to the COVID-19 Crisis. The survey targeted marketers in all industries both B2B and B2C. Over 100 surveys were completed so far, and the results are interesting, as were many of the quotes and comments from the top content marketers who responded.
|The survey targeted:
- Function: Marketing
- Seniority: Director +
- Industries: B2B & B2C
Use these results to benchmark your own process and identify opportunities for improvement, as well as leverage this report’s findings as evidence to make a compelling argument for more resources or process changes at your company.
Let’s get to it: here’s what we found.
58.4% of marketers expect no change or increase in their marketing budget due to COVID-19.
“Of course, I’ll be investing more in digital marketing. In particular, we will be building high quality educational content that helps our customers by teaching them best practices, with the goal of becoming their trusted advisor,” says Ashley Stirrup, Chief Marketing Officer from Algolia, an IT company.
“Personally, I think now is the time to take advantage of when competitors are cutting back on their marketing budgets; obviously, within reason and of course based on your personal situation. We are going to continue business as usual in regards to marketing until we start seeing a decline in ROI, and even then, I’m not sure we’ll take pause,” says Lauren Wray from CredentialGenie.com, a Healthcare company.
Another interesting data point is from eMarketer: new estimates for global media ad spending this year is $691.7 billion, which is up 7% over 2019 and only a slight downward revision from the previous estimate of a +7.4% rise. (Source eMarketer).
38.1% of marketers expect a decrease in their marketing budget due to COVID-19.
“I am calling customers and asking them how can we help them during this time. That’s not necessarily a solution, but a way to connect authentically,” says Martha Lubow from Synergis Technologies, a B2B/B2C company.
“My team is using the time we “got back” from cancelled events to focus on things that were put on hold during busy event season — zoning in on marketing infrastructure (martech) projects, ‘nice to have’ enhancements, and focusing on integrated digital campaign management and improvement. We are a highly productive department and will stay that way through the remote working era with the help of HIVE and other remote tools,” says Krista Souto from –CAI a B2B company.
An unexpected finding – MoM (month over month) numbers don’t show much change from March to April.
In the 3rd week of March 52% of respondents expected no change in their budget, compared to 54% of respondents in the 3rd week of April.
In the 3rd week of March 20% of respondents expected a greater than 25% drop in budget, compared to 19% of respondents in the 3rd week of April.
While there was a drop in those reporting that budget would increase (from 24% to 12%) that number seems balanced by the 4% to 15% shift in those who expect budget cuts of less than 25%.
Industries Most Likely to Maintain or Increase Budget
- Finance – 10%
- Health Care – 10%
- IT – 24%
- Insurance – 7%
- Other B2B – 17%
- Other Industries – 32%
Though the data shows the IT industry will be less affected by the crisis, we see this industry is still or will be affected. Yes, 24.3% of IT companies expect no change or even an increase in their marketing spend, but another 43% expect decreases of up to 25% or even up to 50%.
How to Prepare for the Rebound: Interviews with Top Marketers about the Positives and Lessons from the COVID-19 Crisis
We wanted to find real solutions and positive examples how people and companies are managing with the COVID-19 situation. We started a series of video interviews:
Continuing the Research: How You Can Help
The survey by the team at TSG is continuous. Additional findings will be published in the coming weeks. If you are a marketer and would like to contribute to the research, click the link below to fill in the survey (estimated 5 minutes to complete): https://thesearchguru.com/covid-crisis-marketing-research/. Thank you!
Wherever you are re coping with covid-19, we are here to help you. Whether you’re ready to start up, ramp up, level up or simply grow your content marketing approach, reach out to me and we can discuss what’s working, what’s not working and how we can help.
NOTE: Leslie has also been managing a remote team for more than 15 years and is happy to jump on a call to discuss how to make things work for you and your team. You can email Leslie at email@example.com or call her cell at 440-463-3871.
For more information or press inquiries, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The research shows that while some people’s marketing budgets have been cut or will be, the majority of marketers will see no change or an increase in their marketing during the COVID-19 crisis. We’re all on the edge of our seats, and hopeful for businesses and the economy in the wake of the pandemic.
Knowing general trends and preferences can help you shape your strategy so it’s as effective as possible.