ANA Study Reveals Recession-Induced Horror Show
We are loathe to report bad news because, you know, Adrants is all about the FUN in advertising, right? Who wants to be bogged down with minor details like tens of thousands of layoffs and millions of dollars of budget cuts? Right? No one but, hey, we wouldn't be doing our job if, despite all the FUN, we didn't offer up a bit of reality every once in a while. So, without further ado...
Um, how do we say this tactfully. The economy sucks and the advertising industry is undergoing decimation. A recent study from the Association of National Advertisers, in a follow up study to one completed in August, found 93 percent of companies are in cost saving/reduction mode (compared to 87 percent in August) and 37 percent are reducing budgets by more than 20 percent (compared to 21 percent in August.)
The ANA reports found the top five areas where marketers plan to reduce costs are:
- Departmental travel and expense restrictions (87 percent, versus 63 percent in the previous survey)
- Reducing advertising campaign media budgets (77 percent, versus 69 percent in the previous survey)
- Reducing advertising campaign production budgets (72 percent, versus 63 percent in the previous survey)
- Challenging agencies to reduce internal expenses and/or identify cost reductions (68 percent, versus 63 percent in the previous survey)
- Eliminating or delaying new projects (58 percent versus 61 percent in the previous survey)
- Departmental salary or hiring freezes jumped to 57 percent from 45 percent six months ago.
- Forty-eight percent of marketers are looking at reducing agency compensation today, versus 32 percent six months ago.
In the first survey, the ANA asked if marketers thought their budgets would increase, decrease or remain the same in the next six months. In this survey, the ANA asked what actually happened.
- In July/August, 53 percent of marketers thought their advertising budgets would be reduced in the next six months, when in fact, 71 percent experienced a budget decrease.
- Thirty-eight percent thought their budgets would remain the same, but only 23 percent had their budgets untouched.
- Nine percent thought they would see a budget increase, when only six percent did.
It ain't pretty people. Now if only Cash4Gold would launch Spec4Gold, then every agency and marketer could unlock their vast archives of never approved/never produced work in exchange for some cold hard cash. Alas, no one's buying.
Next January can't come soon enough.