Marketers are optimistic about the economy for the second half of the year: Even in the midst of a recession, 42% of nearly 1,000 global business leaders polled say they plan to increase marketing budgets in 2009, and 43% say they plan to maintain current levels, according to the June "2009 Marketing Trends Survey" by StrongMail Systems.

Moreover, only 15% of polled businesses expect a decrease in customer sales in the second half of the year—a dramatic improvement over the 37% who responded similarly in StrongMail's December 2008 survey, "2009 Marketing Outlook Survey."

Businesses project that 34% of customers will spend more in the second half of 2009, versus only 19% who said so in the December survey; an additional 31% now project that customers will spend the same as in the first half.

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