Lead the fight for investment

As marketers, you are, by necessity, a chipper bunch. Anyone in the industry adopting gloom as a default would unlikely progress very far. Not a thunderous surprise then the great and good in the industry are starting the year with a spring in their step.

Russell Parsons

The latest Bellwether report by the IPA, a respected barometer of confidence in the industry, found “cautious optimism” within the industry budgets would be set higher over 2013. Elsewhere, more marketers than not are expecting improvements in the performance of their own companies.

Quarter four reported spend further lifted the mood with again, more than less increasing spending. Notably, although still heading south, the rate of decline in DM spending slowed.

Reason to believe the health of the industry will be more robust this year? Yes, but tempered with a huge slice of the cautious optimism pervasive in UK PLC for as long as anyone can remember.

The forecasted uplift for 2013 is the smallest seen since with only 2012 seeing a more downbeat start to the year, while marketers’ optimism about industry health does not match the sagacity demonstrated by those of their own companies. Over 29 per cent were more pessimistic compared with just 12 per cent more optimistic.

So, what can we learn from all of this? Essentially, the fog of uncertainty continues to hang over the marketing profession as densely as ever. The UK economic recovery continues to dangle by a thread and subsequently the reins, although a little looser than they were at the dawn of 2012, are still held very tightly by the finance departments.

It is therefore essential that all marketers – direct and all – should continue to make the case for the profession and the economic benefits it can bring to their companies and the UK economy. The recession or threat of a third should not become the framework for all marketing activity, not in terms of budget allocated or message communicated.

Marketers should not feel the need to apologise for needing money to build brands and grow businesses. They need to make the case loud and clear that it is not just an operating cost per sale to be meekly annotated at the bottom of an earnings statement but to be proudly displayed as a revenue driver.

The fight is being taken on. Later this month, the Advertising Association with Credos will unveil a study that lays bare the money than can be generated for the economy from investment in advertising. A really interesting read that you will be able to see more on in Marketing Week. Join with them and us on making the case for your profession.

The Marketing Week Engage Awards deadline has been extended. If you have used DM effectively and want to get your hard work recognised, click here to enter the DM category before 29 January 2013.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here