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Marketers remain upbeat despite economic slowdown

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The Chartered Institute of Marketing’s latest Marketing Trends Survey (Spring 2008) reveals that marketers remain surprisingly upbeat about their own organisations’ prospects – even if they are increasingly gloomy about the UK’s economic outlook.


The survey, completed for The Institute by Ipsos MORI, reveals that more than a third of marketers believe the UK will be in recession in 2008, and the number of marketers who expect general economic conditions to worsen over the next 12 months has risen substantially since the previous survey in September 2007(from 40% to 57%).


However, marketers remain stubbornly optimistic about their own organisation’s performance, with a surprisingly high 39% of marketers confident that business for their organisation will improve over the next 12 months, with 41% saying that it will stay the same, and only 17% believing conditions will worsen for their business.


Commenting on the findings, David Thorp, director of Research and Information at The Chartered Institute of Marketing, said: “Marketers remain confident about their own prospects, despite the end of the ‘nice’ decade. This may be because today’s professional marketers know that they can help their organisations’ exploit the opportunities an economic downturn brings. By focusing on changing customer needs more precisely, in these challenging times, they can help their organisations to not only survive but thrive.”


As if to confirm marketers’ optimism, The Institute’s survey shows that spending on marketing continues to rise, accounting for an average of 7.7% of an organisation’s turnover (up from 6.6% in September 2007). Amongst small businesses the figure is even higher at 8.6% for those with turnover under £1 million, and 8.8% for those with turnover between £1 million and £10 million.


Such confidence in their own prospects is also reflected in marketers’ expectations about staffing levels over the current sales year. 30% of marketers expect to be adding staff, with only 10% expecting a decrease in the size of their organisation’s marketing function.  









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