Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Hurry up! Hurry up - I haven't got all minute - net revenues are escaping

The PR industry should already have 10% of the online budgets. In the UK this means £140 million last year and nearly £200 million this year. It should be taking a bigger proportion every month as new media takes hold. This represents 20% of the total turnover of the UK PR industry if the CIPR research is to be believed. Tony Bradley, no doubt has development of this market as a big industry sector priority.

For the USA, Duncan Riley has posted interesting figures about growth in online advertising. The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) report that Internet advertising revenues reached a new record of $3.9 billion for the first quarter of 2006.

But, back to the UK, the Online Marketing Show opens in a couple of days time. Colin Williams speaking about the show told me yesterday that pre-registered attendance figures are up 45% over last year.

With £1.4bn spent last year, online has overtaken radio, consumer and outdoor advertising and the Interactive Advertising Bureau's goal to create a billion-pound medium by 2006 is met. It it is now talking about doubling its target to overtake newspaper advertising, currently worth around £1.9bn in the UK.

The Online Marketing pre-show survey, published two weeks ago, showed that over 15% of respondents said that they now spend more than 75% of their marketing budget online, up 10% from last year. Overall 23% marketers spend more than half of their budget online, compared to only 9% in last year.

Yes, it is time to take a lot of this budget.

'New Mobile Services' from Portio Research identified that as many as 50% of European mobile users are interested in mobile TV and are prepared to pay on average €10 for 'all you can eat TV' - the potential market, especially in Europe, is huge; Video calling is in its infancy with only 6% having used it, but over 60% want to and are prepared to pay for it; Mobile advertising is a big turn off for most with over 65% of respondents expressing a zero tolerance.

Meantime, Sarah Lelic reports in the Guardian that Vodafone, the mobile operator last week unveiled the UK's biggest ever corporate loss, with pre-tax losses at the group hitting £14.9bn for 2005. Market saturation and big write downs are the cause and competition is hotting up. Europe's first "quadruple play" mobile phone service, offering its customers mobile, fixed line, voice over IP and broadband all bundled together with one bill is promised from Orange, another mobile operator.

Channel 4, the TV channel is moving into radio. They say:

“Promising a fresh approach to radio programming, Channel 4 Radio has already begun commissioning a range of innovative audio content. Programmes available from launch include radio extensions of flagship Channel 4 television shows such as Channel 4 News, Richard & Judy, Lost and Big Brother – with further cross-over commissions planned for later in the year.”

So here are many PR opportunities ready made. The market is growing, the marketers are interested, they want to explore social media marketing, they have the budgets and are getting the message that advertising is a turn off.

We are seeing client driven demand and the industry has to be ready to respond with real capability and really quickly too.

Tony, all yours.

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