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A lot of traditional brands have been talking about their online presence, but Reckitt-Benckiser decided to put their money with their mouth is last month. After five years of organic growth in their advertising, Reckitt moved $20 million of their TV ad dollars to the web in April.
The company, which represents such brands as Clearasil, Lysol, Air Wick, Mucinez, and Finish, is moving the advertising for over 15 of its brands to the web.
According to TNS Media Intelligence, the company has traditionally spent move than 90% of its $475 million measured-media budget on TV, and last year spent less than $1 million in measured spending on the web.
But in order to get a better return on their investment, the company decided they needed to invest more in the digital space.
Marc Fonzetti, Reckitt-Benckiser's media manager and internet specialist, speaking at the IAB Social Media Conference on Monday, said that his company needed to move more money online to see the results he was looking for:
"There's a fear factor. It's not nearly as strong as it used to be, but you need to figure out how to you tie [the online measurement] back into metrics that traditional advertisers can understand."
But Reckitt's not the only brand getting ready to move online despite the economic downturn. NBCU's Jeff Zucker has finally stopped comparing digital pennies to the dollars his company earns from traditional TV advertising (NBC is now apparently earning "digital dimes" from it's online video). And other companies are more bullish on web advertising. A major car rental company that we've spoken to recently plans to move the entirety of its advertising spend online this year.
Once the dollars migrate online, the coming months will be a proving ground for online measurement for these brands. Most companies realize that traditional advertising is not going to work as a unilateral strategy going forward, but in order to make the switch to online campaigns, they're looking for impressive results on the web.