Twice a year Professor Christine Moorman at Duke's Fuqua School of Business surveys hundreds of CMOs to get an overall measure of what is happening in marketing as part of a project aptly called The CMO Survey.  Below are a couple highlights from the latest report, released today.

Marketing Spending Should Increase

The CMOs reported that on average their budgets would increase 9.2%, a much larger increase than any of the other surveys done in the past 2 years.  Clearly companies are starting to invest in marketing as they see the economy improving.  Another factor might be that budgets that had been cut before during the recession might now be allowed to grow back to their previous size.

change in marketing spending cmo survey

Internet Marketing Spending to Grow

The CMOs also reported that on average they were going to grow their spending on internet marketing by 13.6%, a much larger increase than in any other area.  Just like 6 months ago, CMOs are cutting spending on traditional advertising.  It seems that the better marketing ROI from internet marketing and inbound marketing is influencing the investment decisions CMOs are making.  I would personally love to know if this spending is still online advertising focused or if CMOs are starting to invest in more content generation and community management to leverage inbound marketing, but that was not included in the survey.

change in marketing spending detail cmo survey resized 600

Social Media Marketing Spending Increasing

As part of that increase in spending on internet marketing, the survey reports that social media marketing spending is increasing over time.  Unfortunately it is not clear from the data if this is just more spending on advertising on social media websites like Facebook, or if companies are making an investment in inbound marketing by hiring people to create content and build relationships with their target market online.  This latter type of investment is the type of activity that can transform your marketing to be a lot more effective.  Merely advertising on Facebook instead of the local newspaper is not going to transform your marketing.

change in social media spending cmo survey resized 600

What do you think?  Do these CMOs have it right?  How would you allocate your company's marketing budget if you ran the show and could start with a blank slate?

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Originally published Aug 31, 2010 8:00:00 AM, updated July 03 2013