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Chartered Institute

Chartered Institute of Marketing research finds growing optimism amongst junior marketers and SMEs

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By Gillian West, Social media manager

March 14, 2013 | 3 min read

Findings from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) have revealed that junior practitioners and SMEs are increasingly confident about their businesses and career prospects despite the current economic climate.

Uncovered from CIM’s Marketing Confidence Monitor supported by Deloitte, the quarterly survey of more than 1,300 UK marketing professionals found optimism amongst junior marketers was growing. More than half (55 per cent) reported that they were increasingly confident for their career prospects compared to this time last year.

“It's encouraging to see that, despite the challenging business environment, marketers are generally upbeat in their assessment of business performance and prospects. Investment - whether through marketing budgets or headcount - is stable or growing for most businesses, particularly reassuring given the short-term concerns surrounding consumer confidence and UK economic performance,” commented Anne Godfrey, chief executive of CIM.

Senior marketers were found to be less optimistic with one in 10 of those surveyed saying they expected a decrease in their salary over the next 12 months, only one in 50 junior marketers expected a reduction.

Small businesses were found to share the optimism of junior practitioners, SMEs were found to be more positive about the future than their larger counterparts with micro and small businesses felling more assured about their ability to meet financial growth targets over the next 12 months. The research showed that 45 per cent and 42 per cent of micro and small businesses respectively were more confident than this time last year, compared to 35 per cent of large businesses.

Micro and small business said they were predicting the most increases to planned marketing spend, with mid-sized and larger businesses more pessimistic, forecasting a likelihood of cuts to marketing spend in the next three months. Larger companies budget-setters, however, were found to be the most optimistic regarding the possibility of increasing headcount, with one third of these respondents anticipating an increase within the next three months.

Individual marketers within SMEs reported the highest levels of confidence in career prospects, sitting 10 per cent higher than those in large businesses. This confidence also related to job security with 67 per cent seeing low risk to their positions, compared to 55 per cent in larger businesses.

Partner in the marketing & insight practice at Deloitte, Nick Turner, added: “Marketing budgets and headcount, long considered a lead indicator of confidence, paint an uncertain picture of the future. For every marketer reporting a lack of confidence in having access to the right levels of investment, there’s another marketer with a positive outlook. These findings mirror wider held thoughts about the state of the UK economy and suggest no anticipated change of fortunes in the next three months.

“It is positive to see micro and small businesses are the most upbeat about investment and staffing, with many reporting increased access to resources to help fuel growth.”

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