Brands in the motoring sector typically have hefty budgets to use on marketing — and they seem to be using them. According to figures from Google’s Car Purchasing UK Report in April 2017, £115.9 million was invested in online display and direct mail by car dealers in the UK, in 2016 alone.
Here, we’ll look at how various UK sectors use their marketing budgets and which processes are typically adopted by each…
Heavy regulations and strict monitoring make marketing slightly more difficult in healthcare than in many other industries. So, how do those in healthcare carry out marketing strategies? Despite nearly 74% of all healthcare marketing emails remaining unopened, you’ll be surprised to learn that email marketing is essential for the healthcare industry’s marketing strategy.
Sending and receiving emails is a key part of communicating with, and marketing to, people within healthcare. Apparently, around 2.5 million people use email as a primary source, and this number has risen recently — so email marketing is targeting a large audience. For this reason, 62% of physicians and other healthcare providers prefer communication via email — and now that smartphone devices allow users to check their emails on their device, email marketing puts companies at the fingertips of their audience.
Obviously, the healthcare sector would seriously struggle if it was limited to email marketing alone. Reportedly, one in 20 Google searches are for health-related content. This could be attributed to the fact that many people turn to a search engine for medical answer before calling the GP. Pew Research Center data shows 77% of all health enquiries begin at a search engine — and 72% of total internet users say they’ve looked online for health information within the past year. Furthermore, 52% of smartphone users have used their device to look up medical information.
Many brands in all kinds of sectors rely on social media to spread new marketing campaigns — but does the healthcare industry? While the healthcare industry is limited with regard to how it markets its services and products, that doesn’t mean social media should be neglected. In fact, an effective social media campaign could be a crucial investment for organisations, with 41% of people choosing a healthcare provider based on their social media reputation! And the reason? The success of social campaigns is usually attributed to the fact audiences can engage with the content on familiar platforms.
Being aware of digital platforms is essential in motoring where, clearly, most of the target audience is already fully aware of such processes. In Google’s Drive To Decide Report, in association with TNS, how today’s auto shopper is more tech-aware than before is discussed. Reportedly, over 82% of the UK population aged 18 and over have access to the internet for personal reasons, while 85% use smartphones and 65% opt for a smartphone as their preferred device to access the internet.
Capitalising on micro moments of influence will grow in importance for those in the car sector, as these are effective at bringing in those shoppers that start their motoring research over the internet. This method already occupies a significant proportion of car dealers’ marketing budgets. The before-mentioned Google report revealed that 90% of auto shoppers carry out research online, with 41% of those using a search engine. According to eMarketer, the automotive industry accounted for 11% of the total UK Digital Ad Spending Growth in 2017, placing the industry in second place behind the retail sector. The automotive industry is forecast to see a further 9.5% increase in ad spending in 2018.
But does online marketing hold so much weight if most deals are done on the forecourt? Apparently so, as 41% of shoppers who research online find their smartphone research ‘very valuable’. 60% said they were influenced by what they saw in the media, of which 22% were influenced by marketing promotions — proving online investment is working in motoring.
Although TV and radio remain important marketing channels; in the past past five years, it is digital that has made the biggest jump from fifth most popular method to third, seeing an increase of 10.6% in expenditure.
For those in the utilities sector, comparison websites hold great influence and a brand’s presence on them can have a great impact. With comparison websites spending millions on TV marketing campaigns that are watched by the masses, it has become vital for many utility suppliers to be listed on comparison websites and offer a very competitive price, in order to stay in the game. Compare the Market, Go Compare, MoneySupermarket and Confused.com are among the top 100 highest spending advertisers in the UK and can affect the rate of customer retention and acquisition in utilities.
An example of marketing in the utilities sector is British Gas, which concentrates on customer retention, rather than acquisition. It recognises that this approach to marketing will be a slower process to yield measurable results, however, it believes that retention will lead to acquisition. The gas company hopes that by marketing a wider range of tailored products and services to their existing customers, it will be able to improve customer retention.
In utilities, digital processes is heavily depended on. Reportedly, 40% of all searches in Q3 2017 were carried out on mobile and another 45% of all ad impressions were via mobile too, according to Google’s Public Utilities Report in December 2017. Clearly, mobile is important — are all utilities firms investing in tailoring their marketing strategies to this device.
Few sectors rely on, or make such a success of, online marketing as fashion. Reportedly, online fashion sales hit £16.2 billion in 2017 and this figure is expected to increase by 79% by 2022.
Over-the-internet shopping is pioneered by online brands like Boohoo and ASOS. In December 2017, ecommerce made up nearly a quarter of all purchases, according to the British Retail Consortium. ASOS experienced an 18% UK sales growth in the final four months of 2017, whilst Boohoo saw a 31% increase in sales throughout the same period.
Evidently, newer clothing brands are in on the online trend game, but what about older, more established British firms? Companies like Marks and Spencer, John Lewis and Next have put millions into online marketing to target the online shopper and drive digital conversions. John Lewis announced that 40% of its Christmas sales came from online shoppers, and whilst Next struggled to keep up with the sales growth of its competitors, it has announced it will invest £10 million into its online marketing and operations.
Online shopping for fashion pieces seems to be how we like to buy new clothes in the UK. But what marketing tactics are proving particularly popular?
According to PMYB Influencer Marketing Agency, 59% of fashion marketers increased their budget for influencer marketing last year — and this form has much influence and authority within this sector. In fact, 75% of global fashion brands collaborate with social media influencers as part of their marketing strategy. More than 33% marketers think that influencer marketing is better than traditional processes — maybe because 22% of customers are said to be attained through influencer marketing!
Is the investment worth it?
Each industry relies on and excels at online marketing in different ways. With a clear increase in online demand, both fashion and motoring are changing the purchasing process for everyone. So, you could risk being ‘out of the game’ before it has even begun if you neglect digital.
Conversely, for companies in the utilities industry, a brand’s position on comparison sites is essential. however, even within this sector, TV and digital appear to remain the main sales driving forces.
Not having the best marketing strategy or listing on comparison sites means falling behind in 2018. According to webstrategies.com, the average firm in 2018 is expected to allocate at least 41% of their marketing budget to online strategies — with this figure expected to grow to 45% by 2020. Social media advertising investments is expected to represent 25% of total online spending and search engine banner ads are also expected to rise significantly — all supposedly the result of more mobile and online usage.
For anyone in business, online marketing can make or break your company’s success. If mobile and online usage continues to grow year on year at the rate it has done in the past few years, we forecast the investment in online marketing to be essential.
This article was created by car company, Vindis, which offers premium VW services.