How Much Do Companies Spend on Advertising

Let’s be honest, advertisements are annoying! They pop up in the middle of YouTube videos, in between your Spotify playlists, and during television or radio breaks. Sometimes they even end up on your social media feed and you accidentally like them, making them pop up even more! However, did you know companies spend millions upon millions of dollars creating these little inconveniences in our entertainment? These advertisements are one of the tactics companies use to promote their products and brand. Thus, this leads to the question: how much do companies spend on advertising? 

Factors Influencing an Advertising Budget

An advertising budget is the amount of money a company plans to spend on promotional campaigns and strategies over a certain period of time. During these times, the company might be selling a new product or introducing a new service. Regardless, there are a series of steps a company must take to ensure that their advertising budget is practical for their marketing goals. The first step is answering a series of important questions.

Who is the Target Audience?

When you are planning advertisements, it is important to figure out who you want your advertisements to reach. In other words, who is going to be most interested in your products or services? Figuring out the targeted demographic allows you to spend your money and resources in the right place. To do this, you can create a consumer profile to give you a general idea of your ideal customer.

advertising budget

Which Media Type Will You Use?

There are a variety of places that you can place an advertisement, so it is important to spend your money in the right places. To do that, you need to find out which media type (television, social media, etc.) is the best way to reach our target audience. In the past, the best way to spend your advertising budget was on print, radio, and television advertisements. Nowadays, the internet and the fast pace of social media has quickly taken over. 

Another important factor to consider is the placement of your advertisement. You need to place it somewhere everyone can see. This is where programmatic advertising comes in. Programmatic advertising includes allowing your ads to be seen and automatically sells and buys advertising. Finally, blogs are another powerful form of advertising. For example, your company could act as a sponsor to a popular blogger, allowing them to write blogs and articles.

How Can You Get Consumers to Purchase?

Once you have your target consumer, it is time to figure out how to make your products appeal to them. To persuade them to buy your products, you have to understand if they are prone to emotional or rational appeals. Will a story about how your product has evoked love in a lonely person get your customers to buy your product? Or will a list of all the scientific achievements your product has achieved be more successful? These are all things to consider when budgeting your advertisements and understanding where to spend your money.

Relationship Between Expenditure and Impact

After spending all that money on advertisements, you have to wonder if your investment will pay off. Will you earn back all the advertising budget you spend off with your profits? This is an important question since you have to consider which investments are worth it.

how much do companies spend on advertising

Your Industry

While the basic concepts of advertising are the same for all companies, there are slight variations when it comes to advertising in different industries. It is always useful to research how much do companies spend on advertising in your industry and compare it to your budget.

A great resource to use is the Schonfeld survey. Every year Schonfeld & Associates, Inc. publishes a report of advertising budgets by industry and company as a percentage of their sales. There are over 4,500 companies in more than 300 industries. This is a great resource to compare your advertising budget with similar companies. While the survey is pricey, you can find them in some libraries or universities. By comparing what you spend with other companies, you can easily see if your budget is in line with the standard.

Advertising Budget vs. Marketing Budget

You might be wondering, what is the difference between an advertising budget and a marketing budget? The answer is that advertising budgets are incorporated into a company’s marketing budget. A marketing budget also includes products, price, place, and promotions. The promotional budget is what the advertising budget is a part of.

Different Industries

Just like advertising budgets, marketing budgets are different within each industry. For example, the Consumer Service industry has the highest marketing spending as a percent of company revenue by industry with 18.9% and Manufacturing has the lowest percentage at 2.4%. Another important part of the marketing budget is where it is spent. Since there is so much more involved with marketing than just advertising, you can split the expenses into different categories: direct expenses, brand-related expenses, marketing research and analytics, social media marketing, and so on. While these are only some of the potential areas the budget goes, this also varies from each industry. 

Facebook Advertising Cost

advertising budgets by industry

While advertising on social media is fairly new, it is clear that some platforms are being invested in more than others. With around 91% of marketers investing in Facebook advertising, it is the dominating social media platform.

The cost of using Facebook advertising depends on which form of bidding you take as well as other factors. First off, Facebook has Cost-Per-Click (CPC) ads. These are charged per click to each link. They cost around $0.97 per click. Next is the Cost-Per-Thousand-Impression (CPM). This type of advertisement has an average cost of $7.19 and allows 1,000 users to view your Facebook ad. There are also other services such as Cost-Per-Like (CPL) which could be around $1.07 and Cost-Per-Download (CPD) which is around $5.47.

Factors that Affect Cost

While the costs listed above are for Facebook’s general services, some factors can affect advertising costs. For instance, appealing to a certain demographic can cause more money. As strange as it sounds, your advertisement might be more expensive if you are targeting the older generation or if your audience is women. 

Additionally, your advertisement cost can be affected by the engagement. The price of having more impressions and clicks is higher than advertisements with less. It is recommended to have a daily budget of around $5 to make sure your ad reaches the most people. 

Finally, since Facebook has many ad placements, where you want your ad can cause more money to be spent. The six different places you can put Facebook Ads are Instagram, Instagram stories, Facebook desktop newsfeed, Audience Network, Facebook right column, and Facebook Messenger.

Instagram Advertising Cost

how much does instagram advertising cost

Right after Facebook, Instagram is the second most used social media platform by marketers. Similar to Facebook they also have a variety of different ad choices. Instagram ads are known to have higher click-through rates compared to other social media platforms. The average cost companies pay for ads on Instagram is between $0.20 to $6.70, which is cheaper than Facebook. Cost-per-click ads (CPC) are between $0.20 to $2 per click. Cost-per-impressions (or CPM) costs around $6.70 for every 1,000 impressions. 

Just like Facebook, different factors can impact the base cost of running an advertisement on Instagram. For instance, an ad relevance score, where Instagram judges your content on relevancy to their users, can affect how much you will pay. 

Another interesting fact is that displaying ads on different days can also impact the price. For example, since more people view Instagram on weekdays, having ads on Sundays is cheaper than on Monday!  

Which Companies are Spending the Most on Advertising? 

While not everyone has the money to have a multi-million dollar advertisement budget, some major companies have seemed to go above and beyond with advertising spending. A data study published in 2017, listed the top 10 US Brands that Spend the Most on Advertising.

At the bottom is Samsung Electronics with $2.41 billion. At the top of the list is Comcast Corp. with $5.75 billion. As you go along the list, you will realize that the majority of them are from the customer service industry. Additionally, many of these top 10 companies have sub-companies or brands that they own. This means that as a parent brand, they must worry about all their companies’ subproject budgets as well. This is understandable considering Comcast owns Universal Pictures, which is a film studio, and advertising for films are expensive! 

marketing budget

Deciding on Your Advertising Budget

To successfully launch products and services, an advertisement budget is needed to not overspend. While you should not go crazy like these million dollar companies, promoting yourself on social media is a good start. The proper and most efficient way to advertise comes from research and experience. Do not be discouraged with low engagement at the beginning as many social media advertisement strategies take time to see significant results.

FAQs about How Much Do Companies Spend on Advertising:

  • What are ways to budget your advertising?
  • How can social media be used for advertising?
  • How much do you spend on social media marketing?
  • What is the difference between an Advertising Budget and a Marketing Budget?
  • How can I find advertising budgets by industry?

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