Welcome to our weekly roundup of digital marketing stats, brought to you this week by me, Econsultancy’s Social Media Manager.

We’ve got some Black Friday insight, stats on Instagram sponsored posts, and an assessment of the proportion of digital media now traded programmatically.

Don’t forget to check out the Internet Statistics Database for more.

Black Friday sales offer few real discounts (and UK consumers know it)

Research from Which has found that just just four of 83 products they studied in 2018 were cheaper during the Black Friday promotion.

The items, from retailers including Amazon and John Lewis, were monitored in the six months up to and after Black Friday. Six in 10 items were cheaper or the same price on at least one day in the six months leading up to the big day.

The first rule of Black Friday marketing is: you do not talk about Black Friday

In other research, Aptos’ Golden Quarter study looked at the trust UK and US consumers have in deal days.

Based on a survey of 4,000 consumers in the UK and the US,  Aptos found UK shoppers are split almost 50:50 when it comes to  trusting retailers to give them the best deals on annual shopping days Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Conversely, our US counterparts are far more trusting shoppers, with 70% believing they are getting the best deals.

Other interesting areas in the study include consumer motivation for heading to stores during the holiday period. Special offers (82%), and pop-up shops (60%), ranked first and second for increasing customers’ in-store interest, with tech experiences (e.g. VR) ranking  relatively  low on customers’ wish lists at 23%.

black friday

US retailers spent over $400 million on TV ads ahead of Black Friday 2019

In the weeks ahead of Black Friday (November 1-15), the US’ biggest retailers spent over $400 million on TV advertising, according to a MediaRadar  Study – representing a 5% increase when compared to the same time period last year.

The study found major ecommerce players Amazon, Walmart, and Target make up the top three, with other marquee US retailers like Macy’s and  JCPenny also in the top 10 TV Black Friday advertising spenders this year.

In addition to Amazon eclipsing Walmart for the number one spot, Best Buy fell three places to number eight and The TJX Companies (which owns TJ Max & Marshalls) broke into the top 10 at number nine.

Instagram sponsored posts continue three-year growth

After analysing 2 million sponsored posts on Instagram and ~1 million sponsored posts on Facebook to determine a three-year trend, data from  CreatorIQ shows how brands are increasingly using the ad format.

From Q1 2017 to Q1 2018, the volume of sponsored posts jumped 59%, this increased by another 23% from Q1 2018 to Q1 2019. What’s more, according to  CreatorIQ , these double-digit growth trends are true for every year-on-year quarterly comparison, with 2019 monthly sponsored post volumes about double what they were in 2017.

CreatorIQ  also found that seasonality plays a big part, with holiday months bringing double the volume of sponsored posts compared to after the new year (December to January sees a -101% drop).

Social Media Platforms – Best Practice Guide

Pointless emails are proving costly to the environment

New research from OVO found that if every adult in the UK sent one less email a day, we would save as much carbon as 81,152 flights to Madrid. But how?

A Lancaster University professor explains: “The carbon happens when you’re at your machine when you’re tapping your email out, and then you send it and the network uses some electricity to send it and then will end up being stored in the cloud, which again will take up electricity.”

According to the survey 86% of internet users in the UK send and receive emails and, on average, Brits send 10 unnecessary, short and unactionable emails each week – translating into more than 450 million unnecessary emails each week,  and  64 million every day.

More than 9 in 10 marketers believe focused data privacy training for  future marketers is a must

The  DMA’s Data Privacy: An Industry Perspective 2019 report has revealed the industry’s opinion on educating future marketers .

The report shows 94% of marketers believe more focused education on data regulations and how to apply them is a “must” for the next generation of marketers.

Three-quarters of marketers believe that having this kind of knowledge would  not only give new entrants a greater advantage in their career, but a more focused education structure would also ‘improve the industry’s image’ (57%) and ‘the performance of marketing  programmes’ (49%).

Elsewhere, the report reveals that marketers appear less confident about GDPR this year. In 2018, 73% of marketers considered themselves to have a good level of understanding of the law changes, following GDPR, compared to only 38% of marketers in 2019.

GDPR: A year on

55% of all digital media was traded programmatically in Australia in 2019

More than half of all digital media, in Australia, was traded programmatically this year, with Zenith analysis predicting growth to continue into 2020.

According to the research, next year’s growth will likely be driven by video with more inventory expected to be made programmatically available across channels like connected TV.

The analysis also found, globally, 69% of digital media will be programmatic next year (up from 65% in 2019). While the amount spent programmatically in 2019 will surpass US$100bn for the first time, Zenith forecasts this number will rise to $106bn by year’s end – with spending hitting $127bn in 2020, and $147bn in 2021.

Optimising Programmatic Campaigns