More than two-thirds of business leaders (68%) say they plan to integrate social media with their email marketing efforts in 2012, and 44% plan to integrate mobile with email, according to a survey from StrongMail.

Some 17% of surveyed business leaders say they plan to integrate search marketing with email, and 14% plan to integrate display. 

Below, other findings from StrongMail's 2012 Marketing Trends Survey.

Such strong ties between email and social media marketing are also evidenced by the 47% of businesses planning to increase investment in email to drive growth in social media channels. 

After social media, the next most popular areas of investment are batch-promotional (44%) and newsletter (39%) programs, followed by real-time lifecycle marketing programs (35%).

2012 Marketing Budgets Remain Healthy

Overall, more than nine in ten business leaders plan to increase or maintain marketing budgets in 2012: 51% plan to increase their marketing budgets over 2011 levels and 41% plan to maintain current levels. 

Email and Social Media Top Areas for Increased Spend

Email marketing (60%) and social media (55%) are cited as the top two areas for increased marketing spend in 2012, followed by mobile (37%) and search (37%).

Only 18% of business leaders plan to increase spending on direct mail and tradeshows in the coming year.

Other email-related findings among surveyed business leaders: 

  • Priorities: 48% cite increasing subscriber engagement as a top goal in 2012; 44% cite improving segmentation/targeting and 32% cite growing opt-in email lists.
  • Challenges: 45% cite data integration as a primary email marketing challenge in 2012; 43% cite lack of resources/staff and 40% cite content management.
  • Value: 64% cite customer loyalty and retention as the primary benefit of email marketing, followed by awareness building (51%), driving revenue (44%), new customer acquisition (38%), and lead generation (B2B) (29%). 

Looking for real, hard data that can help you match social media tools and tactics to your marketing goals? The State of Social Media Marketing, a 240-page original research report from MarketingProfs, gives you the inside scoop on how 5,140 marketing pros are using social media to create winning campaigns, measure ROI, and reach audiences in new and exciting ways.

Value of Mobile Marketing Unclear

Less than a third of businesses plan to increase their investment in mobile marketing programs such as mobile apps (29%) and SMS alerts (20%) in 2012.

Moreover, there is a lack of consensus on the primary value of the channel.  

Building customer loyalty (35%) is cited as the top benefit of mobile marketing, followed by expanded reach (29%) and awareness building (28%). However, that is offset by a similar proportion still trying to determine the value of mobile (24%) and a smaller proportion citing no value at all (7%).

About the data: Findings from StrongMail's 2012 Marketing Trends Report are based on a survey of 939 business leaders from a wide range of industries, conducted by Zoomerang, Nov 16-29, 2011. 

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Marketers to Integrate Social Media and Email in 2012

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