Downturn. Recession. Unemployment. These terms may be just as associated with 2010 as they were with 2009. But what will 2011 look like? Will we see an unemployment rate back near 6%? Will fewer houses sit on the market for months and months? Will consumer confidence be higher than we’ve seen in the past two years? Will we start to see more “good” in the news?
The latest business barometer scores show that senior executives’ perceptions on revenue growth and cost pressures over the next 12 months remain slightly negative.
However, the latest 2010 resource allocation benchmarking results show that Communicators may have a slightly more positive outlook when they think about their own resources for 2011. On average, 54% of communicators expect their budgets to increase in 2011. The most optimistic are communicators from smaller companies of less than $5 billion in revenue – 69% of that group expects to see budget increases in 2011.
In the past year, communicators increased their budget for activities such as government relations, charitable activity and donations, marketing communications, and the corporate Web site. If budgets next year increase an average of 10% as communicators predict, will those extra dollars go to expanding these same activities? Where would you allocate the money if your function had an extra million dollars to work with in 2011?
We’ve seen companies like Monsanto making solid investments in social media vendors to identify their key influencers, or companies like Southwest hiring ethnographic research vendors to get a better understanding of what really matters to their stakeholders.
As you make your planning decisions, check out the full results from the 2010 resource allocation benchmarking study to see where you may be over or under resourcing compared to your peers. And, let us know when we can help with those planning decisions.