NEWS21 April 2022

Social media marketing most effective, says Nielsen report

Europe Middle East and Africa News Trends

UK/EUROPE/MIDDLE EAST/AFRICA – Advertising on social media is considered the most effective channel among Europe, Middle East and Africa (Emea) marketers, with 50% spending their total advertising budget on paid digital, the latest Nielsen annual marketing report has found.

Social media apps

The report, which surveyed nearly 2,000 marketers between December 2021 and January 2022, revealed a digital dominance in how budgets are being spent, while also exposing marketers’ lack of confidence in the data behind those decisions.

With continued digital fragmentation, marketers report data accuracy, measurement and return on investment (ROI) are paramount. While 69% of marketers believe first-party data is essential for their strategies and campaigns, and 72% of marketers believe they have access to quality data, only 26% of global marketers are fully confident in their audience data.

Brand awareness is marketers’ top objective, according to the report. Nearly two-thirds ( 64%) of respondents stated that social media is the most effective paid channel, with TikTok and Instagram dominating spend. Comparatively, TV and radio spend is significantly less, with an aggregate increase of 53% across global marketers. Customer acquisition is their second objective, showing that marketers must focus efforts on the entire customer journey.

Some 36% of marketers still claim that data access, identity resolution and deriving actionable insights from data is either extremely or very difficult. With the rise of connected TV (CTV) this presents new challenges to traditional targeting solutions. CTV is a growing focus for global marketers, with 51% planning to increase their over-the-top/CTV spending in the coming year.

Nielsen said more than half of U.S. consumers ( 52%) purchase from brands that support causes they care about; similarly, more than 36% expect the brands they buy to support social causes.

However, while global marketers say their brands are emphasising purpose, Nielsen data said that 55% of consumers aren’t convinced that brands are fostering true progress.

Jamie Moldafsky, chief marketing and communications officer at Nielsen, said: “This research showcased that marketers want to put money into channels to deliver immediate ROI, however, we also see that they must be agile in the year ahead and work across the entire marketing funnel to reinforce brand awareness and acquire more customers.

“With the upcoming elimination of third-party cookies, it’s understandable to see marketers prioritising personalisation and aligning their brand with causes their customers care about.”