Internet ad spending up, but missing the mark?

missing-markI recently read three articles on a marketing research website that were interesting to me. The first stated that “Internet Ad Spending would overtake newspapers and magazines in 2015”, the second said “Social Media ads: not engaging a majority of viewers”, and the third indicated “that Millenials buying decisions are heavily influenced by print”.

The articles went on to elaborate on why ad spending on Social Media sites would increase over the next few years as they target the younger generation who is more connected online. “ZenithOptimedia predicts global ad expenditure will grow 4.1% in 2013, reaching US$518 billion by the end of the year.”

But then in the next article they began to talk about “Nielsen’s Social Media Report 2012, which examines all aspects of social media, including advertising. In this article they show that 33% of consumers find ads on social networking sites to be annoying. With only one in 4 (26%) saying they are more likely to pay attention to an ad that has been posted by one of their social network friends.” While continuing to say that, “one in 4 (26%) say they are okay with targeted ads that are delivered based on their profile information.”

Finally in the third article, they talk about a trend with Millenials, that indicates they are more interested in finding references for shopping and saving money through print media. “A new study by marketing services company Valassis finds that while Millennial shoppers (ages 18-34) are accustomed to receiving advertising messages on a daily basis from a variety of online and offline sources, newspaper inserts play an important role in their shopping routines, purchasing decisions, and often spur online shopping.”

So why are advertisers rushing to social media and online ads?

Recently one of our clients wanted to do a referral program using text messaging. We reminded them, that with the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, unsolicited phone calls and texting is not allowed under Federal Law. Plus with the advent of State and Federal Do-Not-Call-Lists you are limited even further from directly contacting new prospects via phone and text. With the CAN-SPAM Act contacting a new prospect via email is a point that gets debated (it depends on how you read the law as to whether it is legal or not).

With limits on Spam and Telecommunications (texting is included in telecommunication), and seemingly ineffective social media ads why is spending going up?

With targeted direct mail advertising your return (ROI) can be much greater. Advertisers can reach out to new audiences, without penalty. And you are 99% sure the person you intended to receive the communication will receive it in a timely fashion. And with a well-written and designed mail piece you are more likely to gain the viewers attention.

So why would we rather spend money on a campaign that might reach our target audience, when we could spend money on a campaign that will reach our target audience? Which option sounds like the better investment?

At Printing Partners we have the tools to help you produce effective, targeted direct mail campaigns that can include web (PURL & GURL), social media and text based response mechanisms. We can help you reach out, legally, to new audiences young and old with purchased mailing lists refined to your target audience and give them options for opting-in to your new marketing channels on social media, web and text. To learn more about how we can help you spend your marketing dollars effectively, contact our sales staff at 317-635-2282 or at

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