RESEARCH: Online marketing continues to buck advertising spend trend

Ninety-four per cent of marketers intend to increase their online advertising spend in 2010, a rise on the 83 per cent of marketers who increased spend in 2009.

According to the latest study by the European Interactive Advertising Association, which counts LinkedIn, Microsoft and AOL among its members, audience targeting and cost efficiencies are the drivers of online.

The bi-annual EIAA Marketer's Internet Ad Barometer also found that mobile advertising spend also rose rapidly with the format beginning to fulfil its potential as the ‘one to watch.'

Eight-four per cent of marketers said they were satisfied with the performance of online as a medium, while 96 per cent saw online advertising as either ‘essential' or ‘a growing medium'.

The economic recession led over a third of respondents (36 per cent) to increase online media planning in the second half of 2009, versus 28 per cent in the first half of the year. Nearly a third (31 per cent) of marketers quoted cost efficiency as a reason behind their increasing use of online.

Email advertising has risen in popularity during the second half of this year with two-thirds of those surveyed increasingly investing in it, compared to 46 per cent in H1 2009.

Particular growth was also seen in  behavioural targeting (33 per cent growth in H2 2009 compared with 25 per cent growth in H1 2009) and affiliate marketing (36 per cent growth in H2 2009 compared to a 26 per cent growth in H1 2009). A fact EIAA puts down to marketers looking to make the most of streamlined budgets by tailoring advertising methods for clients.

The research found that a third of organisations are already incorporating mobile into their overall advertising strategies and almost one in five (19 per cent) claim that use of mobile advertising is increasing, up from 12 per cent of marketers in the first half of the year.

Alison Fennah, executive director of the EIAA said "Online advertising is continuing to thrive and grow due to its flexibility, accountability and ability to offer brands a robust return on investment whilst the recession impacts overall marketing budgets. Marketers still seek innovation with new formats such as mobile evolving and helping interactive media to emerge strongly as we look forward to the upturn."