Even as some companies report drops in ad spending, most marketers believe the worst is still at least six months away, according to an IAB survey.
Some 71% think U.S. ad spend will decrease within the next year. Of those, 84% expect ad spend to be it to happen in the first half of 2023. At the same time, those surveyed are scaling back expectations for this year. While they believe the total will still be a healthy 9%-plus over 2021, that’s 4% lower than they predicted in fall of last year.
This is in line with other predictions. U.S. media owners’ ad revenue is expected to grow by 11% according to MAGNA, a media intelligence company. That’s down 1.5% from what it predicted in March.
While the predictions are positive, not all the actual earnings are following the plan.
Last week, Facebook parent Meta, whose revenue comes almost entirely from ad sales, reported a 1% drop in revenue for the 2Q 2022 compared to a year earlier. It expects next quarters’ revenue to be down as well. Smaller social media companies are being hit even harder. Snap lost $422 million for the quarter, compared to a $152 million loss for the same period last year. Twitter, which is battling both the economy and Elon Musk, reported a 1% drop in revenues – which might not be notable except for its earlier prediction of 20% growth for 2022.
It isn’t just social that’s feeling the pinch. Streaming service Roku reported a net loss of $112.3 million for the quarter and said it expected a $200 million loss for Q3.
“In Q2, there was a significant slowdown in TV advertising spend due to the macro-economic environment, which pressured our platform revenue growth,” the company said in its shareholder letter. “Consumers began to moderate discretionary spend, and advertisers significantly curtailed spend in the ad scatter market (TV ads bought during the quarter). We expect these challenges to continue in the near term as economic concerns pressure markets worldwide.”
Then there’s Google. Its second quarter revenue was $69.6 billion, a 13% increase from 2Q 2021, with search advertising doing particularly well. However, even they are getting nervous. In a call with analysts, executives of parent company Alphabet used “uncertain” or “uncertainty” at least 13 times to describe the economy.
Why we care. Even though “may you live in interesting times” is not an ancient Chinese curse, we are living in interesting times, which can feel like a curse. Marketing cuts generally follow ad spend cuts. The mantra of “do more with less” may be heard in the near future. Or, it might not. The whole point of martech and marketing automation is using data to maximize results. That would be a silly thing to cut when you’re trying to protect earnings. Wouldn’t it?
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About The Author
Constantine von Hoffman is managing editor of MarTech. A veteran journalist, Con has covered business, finance, marketing and tech for CBSNews.com, Brandweek, CMO, and Inc. He has been city editor of the Boston Herald, news producer at NPR, and has written for Harvard Business Review, Boston Magazine, Sierra, and many other publications. He has also been a professional stand-up comedian, given talks at anime and gaming conventions on everything from My Neighbor Totoro to the history of dice and boardgames, and is author of the magical realist novel John Henry the Revelator. He lives in Boston with his wife, Jennifer, and either too many or too few dogs.
Who knows your target audience better than your team? Your clients themselves. Users with their demands, likings, and desires are mostly the voices that go unnoticed as companies seek to have a smooth user experience.
Having a good team’s commitment, enthusiasm, and hard work will not compensate for the gap in knowledge between what your customers need and what your team believes they will require.
User experience (UX) research overpasses this imbalance throughout the UX design process, making sure that your company ends up saving resources, expanding loyalty, and providing the best UX for each and every user. Discover more about UX research, its solid business importance, and what to test first.
How can organizations employ UX research?
User experience research focuses on ensuring that your customers have a pleasurable interaction while using your service or product. It is critical to consider UX research from the start of any project, as making changes later can be costly and time-consuming.
Here are some ideas for how businesses can perform UX research:
Ensure that you know who your intended audience is and what they require from your service or product.
Spend some time learning about the user journey — what actions do they take to accomplish a task? Where do they become perplexed or disappointed?
Data and feedback should be used to continuously enhance the user experience. Check your product or service with actual users on a regular basis and take note of their feedback.
Don’t start from the beginning. To get started, there are various off-the-shelf methods and digital options for UX research.
Ensure that your project has adequate resources.
Three useful practices in UX research
The UX research method plays an important role in your analysis. You need to consider the pros and cons of different techniques. For example, there are methods that are cheap and easy but can take a lot of time when it comes to analysis. Another limitation is your available resources, which will dictate when, how much and what type of UX research you can do. We selected a couple of methods for you that combine affordability and quality at the same time. Let’s take a closer look at each of them.
The process of evaluating a product or service by checking it with actual users is referred to as usability testing. Throughout a test, respondents will typically attempt to finish basic tasks while observers witness, listen, and take down notes. The goal is to pinpoint any design flaws, gather qualitative and quantitative data, and assess the person involved in overall product satisfaction.
Usability testing allows both design and development teams to discover issues prior to them being programmed. The sooner problems are discovered and resolved, the less pricey the modifications will be in aspects of both staff time and potential schedule impact.
Among the most widespread UX research methods for gathering both qualitative and quantitative feedback from your customers is the UX survey. It assists you in better comprehending customer habits and determining what appears to work and what does not, allowing you to prioritize adjustments to your product’s UX.
UX surveys provide a cost-effective way for a SaaS business offering long-term growth to gather customer feedback and make data-driven judgments. UX surveys can help you identify conflicting points in your product’s UX design and provide you with the information you need to improve the user experience.
Session recording is a descriptive research tool that records website visitor surfing sessions in real-time, allowing you to observe the recordings afterward to gain a deeper visitor behavior perspective. It allows marketers to comprehend a user’s entire route on their website, which includes clicks, scrolls, and mouse movements, among other things.
Session recording enables detailed evaluation and study of visitors’ browsing activity, the realization of experience breakage, and the identification of friction sectors, which then aids in the repair of what is damaged and the optimization of UX, resulting in higher conversion rates.
Session recording records your users’ actual life cycle on your webpage so you can find out which parts of it lure them the most, pushes them deeper into the sales funnel or causes them to fall out, diverts attention from a page’s primary CTA, resulting in low sales, and so on. Such information allows you to make confident, data-driven strategic decisions.
What are the consequences of skipping UX research?
Companies recognize the consequences of bad decisions: lost money, time, brand image, and occasionally even the entire organization.
Trying to skip user research will frequently result in poor corporate strategy based on anything other than factual customer feedback, such as:
Preoccupation with fashion and design trends. Designers are frequently enamored with the newest trends and believe that if they do not implement them, they really aren’t in tune with the times.
Emotional commitment. Creators and product owners frequently allow their own emotions to affect their capacity to recognize where enhancements could be made.
Personal views. Many executives generate decisions based on deeply held values and allow their egos to take precedence over acknowledging user needs.
In the end, it is clear that implementing UX design can benefit companies in a variety of ways. In addition to increasing customer satisfaction and conversions, it can also contribute to lowering support and product production costs.
Moreover, satisfied clients are more likely to participate in favorable word-for-word marketing, which can support attracting additional business. As a result, companies that invest in UX design can anticipate seeing remarkable long-term growth.
No time to underestimate UX
In this blog we have considered a simple but important part of UX research. There are many other methods of conducting this analysis, but you can start with the basics. There is no need to doubt the importance and usefulness of UX research, so we advise you to start implementing it today!