Ad Firm Business Picking Up, Finds Survey

More signs that the economy is turning around: A new Strata survey of national ad firms found 47.3 percent felt their business picked up in the first quarter, almost double the portion who felt their business was improving a year ago.
One-quarter of agencies plan on hiring staff this year and 16.4 percent say their clients are increasing their budgets. Strata surveyed 60 agencies by phone and Internet from January and April.
As is obvious to all, ad dollars continue to shift out of traditional media, with 68 percent of agencies saying their clients are more focused on digital and about an equal amount saying they were less focused on print than they were a year ago.
More surprising is Strata’s finding that social media and search are catching up to online display. Nearly 90 percent of agencies said they would use Facebook in client campaigns, either by creating Facebook pages or advertising directly on the site. Twitter was second (57.1 percent), followed by YouTube (39.3 percent).
“No question, it’s considered part of the advertising strategy,” said John Shelton, president and CEO of Strata, a seller of media-buying and -selling software, owned by Comcast Cable. “It’s a little bit more than online display; it’s search and social media as well.”