Bellwether: Event budgets continue to grow

Bellwether: Event budgets continue to grow
Bellwether: Event budgets continue to grow

The latest Bellwether report has been released today (19 July) and shows the 15th successive quarterly upward revision to event budgets.

The Q2 2017 IPA Bellwether report indicates that event budgets are continuing to grow for the 15th consecutive quarter. However, as with the Q1 2017 IPA Bellwether report, the increase is on a downward trajectory. 

Last quarter's Bellwether report recorded a growth in event budgets of 4.9%, as opposed to the Q4 2016 report, which recorded a growth of 12.3%. For this current quarter, budget increase has slowed to 2.1%, showing a continued pattern for a downward trajectory. Of those who took part in the survey, just over 19% recorded an upward revision to event budgets, compared to a little over 17% that signalled a decline. 

Part of this slow down in growth is attributed to an uncertain political and financial landscape. The surprise outcome of the recent general election, in conjunction with the persistant insecuruty of Brexit, economic budgets remain an unstable area. Although the Q2 2017 Bellwether report has shown growth across the majority of sectors, the skepticism and ambiguity of the UK's financial future is having an impact.

In response to the report's results, Sarah Mayo, marketing director at FreemanXP EMEA, said: "It’s incredible to see that expenditure in events has seen a continuous increase as a proportion of the marketing spend over the past 15 quarters. Brand experience is firmly on marketers’ radar and the long-term increase infers that they are seeing demonstrable ROI on events as they continue to allocate more and more budget to the medium." 

She continued: "Integrated online and offline marketing campaigns are crucial as we all look to engage our audiences in new, personalised ways. The results of the latest Bellwether report highlight this, with Internet once again coming out on top. While events are unlike any other medium in that they enable deeper relationships to be created between brands and people, there’s no doubt in my mind that seamlessly integrated online and offline experiences is the sweet spot where the best value for people and return for brands is found."

More: Read about the industry reaction to the Q1 2017 Bellwether report, which confirmed that the UK events industry was cautiously optimistic. 

Check out Event's recent Brand Experience Report 2017 for more on industry trends.

Blog: How events are becoming the new social currency 

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