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Social media is becoming an even more integral part of the automotive marketing landscape. According to a June 2010 survey by King Fish Media, HubSpot and Junta42, 72% of US automotive industry companies said they had a social media strategy.
The three companies surveyed 457 US automotive marketers and managers; 52% of respondents were in the publishing, media, advertising and marketing end of the auto industry.
The figure is one of the highest percentages yet among surveys that queried marketers on whether they had a social strategy. In May 2010, Digital Brand Expressions found that 52% of social marketers were “operating without a game plan,” similar to the 50% found in April 2010 by R2integrated.
Marketers are realizing that a strategy is important because it allows them to plan their social activities on a long-term basis rather than focus on one-off experiments. King Fish and its partners found that 75% of the car companies with a social strategy said they planned to increase their investment in the next year.
As automotive marketers continue to invest in social media, its share of marketing budgets is expected to rise. A February 2010 survey by Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business found that respondents were devoting 5.6% of their marketing budget to social media, up from 3.5% six months prior. And auto industry marketers expected the allocation to increase even further, to 9.9% in the next 12 months and 17.7% within five years.
Automotive Companies in the King Fish survey were divided on where the budget for social initiatives would come from, however. While 35% thought that funds would be allocated to a specific custom project, 33% said their company would increase marketing expenditures to focus more on social media.