Your weekly stats roundup includes news about AI, Google search, influencer marketing, and customer experience.

And don’t forget to head on over to the Internet Statistics Database for lots more.

Now let’s get down to business.

53% of marketers plan to increase AI spend in the next three years

Marketers are seeing positive results from investment in AI, according to a new global study by Quantcast and Forbes Insights.

In a survey of more than 500 marketers, 52% of respondents said that they have seen an increase in sales, and 51% said they have seen an increase in customer retention since introducing AI capabilities.

As a result of this, brands are showing increased interest in further investment. 53% of marketers plan to make a 25 to 49% increase on AI spend in the next three years, while 17% promise a boost of between 50 to 74%.

Marketers are also optimistic about the results. 80% said AI technology will enable them to focus more time on strategy and less on day-to-day tasks, 58% said it will help them to refine the online customer experience, and 55% said it will help them generate personalised messaging. 

AI spend

A Marketer’s Guide to AI and Machine Learning

Nearly a fifth of British children aspire to be social media influencers

An Awin survey of 2,000 parents has uncovered the (perhaps rather depressing) statistic that nearly one fifth of British children say they want to have a career as a social media influencer when they leave school.

17% of 11 to 16 year olds in Britain want to be a social media influencer when they grow up, while 14% want to become a YouTuber. These two professions outrank vets and teachers, which were cited by 13% and 9% of children respectively. Interestingly, 45% of parents say they don’t understand what being social media influencer consists of, and 58% say they are unaware that you can make money in that profession.

However, other data from Awin paints a very different picture. It found that £5.75 million was paid in commission to publishers in the influencer space in 2018, representing a 30.8% increase on the year before. Similarly, 856,000 sales were tracked through influencer marketing, which was a 37% increase on the previous year.

influencer

Transparency in influencer marketing: Where are we now?

Online retail sales increase on Blue Monday

New data from EmpathyBroker suggests that consumers are turning to retail therapy to escape what’s known as ‘Blue Monday’. On Monday 21st January – the so-called most depressing day of the year – the number of searches (compared to an average Monday) rose by 26% in 2017 and 32% in 2018.

Mirroring this, it was also revealed that Sunday evenings, closely followed by Monday, is the most popular time of the week to go online to search and shop for clothing.

80% of marketers believe they will have ‘complete ownership’ of CX by 2020

Episerver’s latest report – based on data from 100 UK marketers – has revealed that 80% of marketers plan to take complete control of their companies CX by 2020.

While 62% of marketers are already working with IT to improve experiences, 45% of businesses have given the marketing team total ownership over the customer experience. Instead, 35% of brands have assigned a specific CX manager or customer experience team.

This suggests that many marketers do not feel current structure is delivering the best results. 23% of marketers believe that their brands are still not delivering adequate customer experiences on mobile sites, while 27% believe they are not even delivering a high-quality experience through their mobiles apps.

CX

A Guide to Customer Experience Management

YouTube increases revenue 11% YoY

A new report by MediaRadar has revealed that YouTube finished 2018 with a 51% advertisers renewal rate, meaning the business increased its revenue 11% year on year.

Three companies collectively accounted for 15.5% of YouTube’s 2018 revenue, including Geico (making up 6%), Samsung (5.5%) and Disney (4%).

Media and entertainment companies advertised the most on YouTube, accounting for more than 30% of YouTube’s 2018 revenue. Interestingly, however, the automotive industry dramatically reduced budget, spending nearly 60% less on YouTube ads in 2018 than the year before.

What is the ideal customer experience & why is it proving so elusive for brands?

Video ads optimised for sentiment are more effective

A new study by Magna Global suggests that video advertisers could be wasting half their budgets on traditional retargeting. This is because ads that are optimised to consumer sentiment are said to be far more effective.

Magna Global tested two video ads on 6,000 consumers, with one group receiving ads based on sentiment (i.e. their level of interest in the ad), and the other based on exposure only.

It found that consumers watching videos optimised for sentiment were seven times more likely to search for the brand and twice as likely to visit the brand’s website than the other group. 85% of these consumers also agreed the ads were interesting, 76% agreed the ads were relevant, and 66% agreed the ads were informative.

Finally, the study concluded that an average of 59% of ad impressions were wasted with standard video retargeting.

Magna global stat

Amazon and Etsy on the rise in Google search

Data from Searchmetrics has revealed the ecommerce sites that enjoyed the biggest improvements in US Google search performance in 2018.

Amazon is the brand with the biggest overall improvement in organic search performance, with a 21% increase in search visibility. This is followed by Etsy, which generated a 47% increase.

Another brand with a notable increase in visibility is ashleyfurniture.com, which improved performance by an impressive 362%. Finally, aliexpress.com – owned by Chinese company Alibaba – increased visibility by 236%.

Econsultancy’s SEO Best Practice Guide