As the key driver of new business and customer loyalty, digital advertising is a critical part of maintaining and growing revenue for B2C businesses, but with the digital media landscape constantly shifting, it’s hard to predict what a new year will bring.
To help you prepare for 2023, we picked the brains of some of the most notable marketing leaders in the U.S. and Canada. Now we’re sharing our fourth annual Digital Advertising Report, outlining the key trends that are informing digital advertising and marketing plans for 2023. Here are the highlights.
One of the year’s biggest trends centered on the continued adoption of automated processes. Compared to previous years, most respondents (81%) have already invested in automation for digital advertising campaign creation and digital ad creation (89%), yet a significant portion of these respondents acknowledge they still need to optimize these processes. Automation veterans are also beginning to test the limits of technology with more brands finding creative ways to streamline processes and fly past the menial tasks that weigh down their competitors.
Social media advertising will continue to remain a strong player in a brand’s marketing-mix. Forty-six percent of respondents dedicated more than a quarter of their marketing budget to social media advertising.
Brands are favoring Instagram and YouTube in 2023, with 35% of respondents saying Instagram yielded the best ROAS and 48% saying YouTube did. Subsequently, many respondents are increasing their spend on these platforms with 79% planning to invest more with YouTube and 75% planning to invest more with Instagram.
TikTok also saw significant growth with a 25% increase in the number of respondents buying ads on the platform. All three of these platforms share a focus on vertical video content, a format that is notoriously popular among younger generations. Perhaps that is why motion-based creative such as videos and reels were the number one visual asset digital respondents plan to increase usage of in 2023.
Throughout 2023, we will likely see B2C brands invest a significant portion of their advertising budget to video content as they prioritize platforms that feature vertical video and that are popular among younger consumers.
Over the last few years, marketers have worked to remove time-consuming manual processes, better collaborate across teams, and lean on time-saving automation, and these investments are paying off. Year over year, respondents saw a +150% increase in removing time-consuming manual processes in digital advertising creation. Teams also saw better collaboration efforts with a 40% increase in advertising and creative teams working together effectively.
Additionally, brands saw a significant return in time thanks to ongoing automated processes, and this return is propelling many to go further with automation. In 2023, automation will continue to streamline ad creation processes and allow teams to take a less ‘hands-on’ role in creative production. Automation will also automatically generate insights across campaigns, helping marketers make data-driven decisions that provide the best results.
Marketers have seen technology bridge divides between creative and advertising teams and provide a way to scale ad creative effectively across platforms. This is likely a key contributor to why 60% of respondents are investing additional budget into digital advertising tools and technology in 2023.
Most of the pain points identified in the survey for the upcoming year—such as maximizing efficiency and return on investment (ROI), producing enough creatives, and measurement and attribution—can be partially alleviated by investing in digital advertising technology.
Automation can streamline the painstaking manual processes associated with the acquisition and generation of creative assets, decreasing costs and minimizing delays. These same tools can provide additional value by distributing personalized creative to different target audiences across multiple channels and ad formats.
Many brands have already turned to technology to maintain quality and consistency around their campaigns. As more brands continue to spread their marketing budget across multiple channels and platforms, they will need to store their data in a CRM so they can better analyze performance and invest in the right channels and creative. With a firm grasp on their data, brands can feel confident testing their creative across their digital marketing-mix.
In 2023, as more companies invest in a variety of advertising channels, brands will look to streamline their creative development and campaign optimization processes by expanding their digital advertising tools and technology.
Advertisers looking to tackle 2023 should first ask themselves if a digital advertising platform could streamline their company’s ad creation. They should also consider investing in YouTube and Instagram, but only after introducing technology that measures campaign performance, allowing them to confirm they are receiving the best ROAS.
For other suggestions to plan your marketing strategies and budgets for 2023 and to learn more about the survey, click here.