Marketing spend suffers worst fall for three years

MARKETING budgets took their biggest hit in three years in the last quarter amid shrinking business confidence, new data released today shows.

Statistics from Markit’s influential IPA Bellwether survey show that budgets shrank for the second successive quarter in the three months to October, with 23 per cent of companies saying budgets had contracted. Just 18 per cent said there had been a rise.
This resulted in a net balance – the report’s metric of budget changes – of -5.5, a fall not seen since the end of 2009.

“The message provided by the Bellwether survey is consistent and indicative of the economic situation as a whole which is one of underlying stagnation,” IPA president Nicola Mendelsohn said.

“We had hoped when the year started that things were picking up but as time has gone on the economy has stuttered and confidence isn’t particularly strong.”

The report said the latest figures had brought its prediction of an overall rise in budgets in 2012 into doubt. Internet advertising bucked the trend however, with a net balance of 7.1 per cent reporting a rise in marketing budgets.