Branding & Brand/Agency List

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Part
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Companies List Part 1

In the attached spreadsheet, we have provided 20 US-based companies that have an annual ad spend of over $1 billion. As each of the provided companies is public, we provided the most recent Form 10-Ks for each company, which includes the amount each spent on advertising in recent years. Companies often use slightly different terms to categorize their ad spend in these documents; below is each company provided, along with the specific terminology used in the corresponding 10-K.

Your Research team Employed the Following Strategy:

To find twenty US-based companies with an ad spend of over $1 billion, we first sought a source that compiled a list to this effect, such as a relevant industry or media report. We found this in the form of an AdAge report on the top 200 advertising spenders in 2017. However, since the report supplied 2017 ad spend figures, and only accounted for companies' US ad spend in lieu of their entire ad spend, we referred to each company's most recent Form 10-K for the most up-to-date and authoritative ad spend figures for the top companies in the report. Some of the top companies in the report were omitted either because they are not headquartered in the US (e.g. Samsung), they are no longer independent companies (e.g. Time Warner), or their Form 10-K utilized ambiguous categorization terminology with regard to their ad spend. An example of the latter case is American Express, which lists its ad spend in a category titled "Marketing and business development;" with this categorization terminology, it is unclear what percentage of the provided figure is advertising and what percentage is other forms of "business development." As such, we simply excluded companies for which this was the case.
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Part
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Companies List Part 2


COMPANY AD SPEND

YOUR RESEARCH TEAM EMPLOYED THE FOLLOWING STRATEGY:

In order to identify 20 US companies that have an annual ad spend of over $500 million, we reviewed reputable advertising publications (like Ad Age) where we found a list of the top advertisers based on their 2017 advertising budgets. Using the companies identified in the Ad Age — 2018 Fact Pack, we browsed their websites for any information regarding their 2018 advertisement spend as contained in their Form 10K filling. This strategy provided all the relevant data for all companies except The Coca-cola company. This company's most recent 10K filling was for 2017. Subsequently, your research team provided Coca-cola company's ad spend for 2017.

Part
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Part
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Companies List Part 3

Twenty US companies with ad spends of over $500 million have been provided in the following spreadsheet. The companies are General Motors, Nike, Wayfair, Estee Lauder Cosmetics, Viacom, Apple, State Farm Mutual Auto Insurance, Kellog Company, InterActiveCorp, Citigroup, Intuit, Kraft Heinz Company, Colgate-Palmolive Company, IBM Corporation, Lion’s Gate Entertainment Corporation, Dell Technologies, Gilead Sciences, Booking Holdings, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, and General Mills.

COMPANY AD SPEND

RESEARCH STRATEGY

To find the requested information, we looked through industry sites such as AdAge, Biz Journal, and Digital Gabe. We found a publication on Digital Gabe that listed the top 200 US companies that spent the most on advertisements in 2017. We then verified the companies on the list by looking through their respective SEC filings and annual reports to ensure that they had advertising expenses of over $500 million.

Part
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Part
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Companies List Part

In the attached spreadsheet, we have provided 20 US-based companies that have an annual ad spend of over $400 million in rows 63 through 82. As each of the provided companies is public, we provided the most recent Form 10-Ks or annual reports for each company, which includes the amount each spent on advertising in recent years. Companies often use slightly different terms to categorize their ad spend in these documents; below is each company provided, along with the specific terminology used in the corresponding 10-K or annual report.

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Part
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Companies List Part 5


Companies ad spend

YOUR RESEARCH TEAM EMPLOYED THE FOLLOWING STRATEGY:

In order to identify 20 American based companies that have an annual ad spend of over $300 million, your team reviewed credible advertising publications (like Ad Age). This strategy led us to an Ad Age — 2018 Fact Pack which listed the leading 200 companies based on their 2017 ad spend. Using the Ad Age list, we identified relevant companies and reviewed their most current (2018 or 2017) 10K SEC filling for their annual ad spend. Additionally, ensured that we did not duplicate companies already found in the provided spreadsheet.





Part
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Part
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Companies List Part 6

Twenty US companies with ad spends of over $250 million have been provided in the following spreadsheet. The companies are Conagra Brands, Dine Brands Global, Office Depot, Delta Airlines, TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation, Darden Restaurants, Hasbro, Starbucks Corporation, Tempur Sealy International, Sherwin-Williams Company, Discover Financial Services, Electronic Arts Inc., Facebook Inc., 21st Century Fox, Intel Corporation, Edgewell, Philip Morris International, Brown-Forman Corporation, Levi Strauss & Co., and Tiffany.

company ad spend

research strategy

To find the requested information, we looked through industry sites such as AdBrands, AdAge, and Digital Gabe. We found publications on Digital Gabe and AdBrands that listed the top US ad spenders in 2017. We then verified the companies on the list by looking through their respective SEC filings and annual reports to ensure that they had advertising expenses of over $250 million.

Part
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Part
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Companies List Part 8

Realogy Holdings Corp spent $207 million in advertising in 2018. The other additional US companies that have an ad spend of over $200 million are listed in the attached spreadsheet, rows 143-162.

1. Realogy Holdings Corp

2. United Continental Holding

3. Tyson Foods

4. Southwest Airlines Co.

5. Altice USA, Inc.

6. Telephone and Data Systems, Inc.

7. H&R Block

8. Publix Super Markets, Inc.

9. Nutrisystem

10. American Express Co.

11. Berkshire Hathaway

12. Time Warner

13. Kohl's Corp.

14. PNC Financial Services

15. Sonic Corp

16. Papa John's International

17. Rooms To Go

18. PetSmart

19. CenturyLink, Inc.

20. WeatherTech

Part
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Part
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Companies List Part 9

We have provided the advertising spend for 20 companies which have an advertising spend that exceeds $150 million in rows 163 to 182 and columns A to D of the attached spreadsheet. Please see below the detailed findings for five companies and our research methodology. The details for all 20 companies have been included within the spreadsheet.

L'oreal, France

Nestle, Switzerland

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, London

Toyota Motor Corp, Japan

Anheuser-Busch InBev, Belgium


Research Strategy:

We started our search by scouring through the media publications that list the top ad spenders in US and in the world through Ad Age, Neilpatel, Digital Gabe, Tvrev, Wordstream, Adbrands.net, Business Insider, among others. This search turned up several lists that provided the leading national advertisers in 2018. The largest list found was from Digital Gabe of 200 leading national advertisers and companies in the other lists were either showcased within it or already covered in the earlier parts of the request.

However, when we cross-checked the spreadsheet, it was found that all the US Based companies have already been exhausted and reported in previous rows. Also, the companies that had not been reported such as LVMH, TD Group, Takeda Pharma, Signet Jewelers, Steinhoff International, Luxottico Group, and Boehringer Ingelheim which have an ad spend that is greater than $150 million were not based in the United States.

We later tried attempted to answer and provide the list by triangulation but it was not feasible to go through all US companies and check for their ad spend within our time constraints. We tried to check through multiple Fortune 500 companies which might not have been included list and may have ad spend over $150Mn and list companies like AT&T, AIG, T-Mobile among others. We found that they had spent less than $100 million ad spend, hence could not be used in this list.

We also tried to identify any reports/articles which were available from Ad Age, Neustar among others. The Ad Age World's Largest Advertisers 2018 showcased the Top 100 marketers by total worldwide advertising in 2018 and most likely have been covered in the earlier requests and this was behind a paywall. Through the search, we found reference to the paid reports on 200 leading national advertisers 2018 and globalmarketers2018 which included reference of US companies but because the findings where secured behind the paid walls the search could not render any relevant findings.

We also looked for industry blogs that list or show the ad spend from the likes of Kantar, adbrands.net among others but these covered the ad spend by industry and not by company. Also, we tried to check through various ad agencies and look through their clients list to find any reference of high advertising spending company based in US. During this search we looked at Disruptive Advertising INC, Vivial, Insignia SEO, Lounge Lizard, Kobe Digital and so on. But most of the information found through this search was related to the advertising work conducted by these agencies and no financial s were publicly available.

Based on our numerous attempts to locate the data, the inference reached was that no additional US company could be found with an ad spend greater than $150 million. Therefore, this response has presented a list of 20 companies who operate in the United States even though they are not US companies. Additionally, these companies have a total media ad spending that exceeds $150 million.
Part
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Part
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Companies List Part 10

After a thorough search through credible sources, we were not able to provide another list of 20 US companies that have an ad spend of over $150 million as the available entities were already covered from previous responses, and therefore, N/A has been encoded in rows 183-202 of the attached spreadsheet. In this regard, the research team gathered other helpful findings and presented them below, together with the details of the team's research strategies to find the required list.

OTHER HELPFUL FINDINGS

  • According to the Digitalgabe report on "Top 200 Media Spenders", the companies with over $150 million total US ad spending include America Movil ($222 million), TD Bank ($205 million), Chanel ($364 million), Kering ($356 million), Takeda Pharma ($351 million), Signet Jewelers ($340 million), Steinhoff International ($336 million), Luxottica Group ($328 million), and Boehringer Ingelheim ($310 million).
  • The market report by Adbrands on "The US Top 100 Advertisers in 2017 by Expenditure" shares references of companies like LVMH and Loreal who have the top ad spending in the US.
  • Ad Age released a 36-page summary report on the 200 leading national advertisers which featured the US ad spending, brands, profiles, executives, and agency rosters for 100 biggest US advertisers.
  • The "World's Largest Advertisers 2018" report released by Ad Age secures information on various US-based companies who have contributed to the worldwide ad spending of $2.02 billion in 2018.
  • According to news forum Biz Journal, P&G, Macy’s, and Kroger are among the nation’s largest advertisers.
  • The news article by Money Connexion lists the top 10 US companies that spend most on advertising every year which includes JP Morgan ($225 million), Walt Disney ($520 million), Fiat Chrysler ($900 million) and others.
  • Upcity lists the top 15 advertising agencies in the US based on their high review ratings. The list includes Vivial (4.8), Disruptive Advertising Inc. (5.0), Insignia SEO (5.0), Lounge Lizard (5.0), Kobe Digital (5.0), Social Media 55 (5.0), MaxAudience Digital Marketing (5.0), and Ignite Visibility.
  • AT&T, T-Mobile, and AIG American International Group are US-based companies that have an advertising spend of around $100 million.

Research Strategy:

To identify another set of 20 US companies that have an ad spend of over $150 million, we initially looked through publications by leading marketing and advertising agencies that provide insights on the top advertisers including various US-based companies. During the search, we found the reports by Digitalgabe and Adbrands which listed the companies with ad spend of over $150 million. But by cross-checking the attached spreadsheet, it was found that all the US-based companies have already been exhausted and already reported in the previous rows. Also, the remaining companies like Loreal, LVMH, TD Group, Steinhoff International, Luxottica Group, Boehringer Ingelheim and others have an ad spend of over $150 million but these companies are not US-based. Additionally, we also looked for industry blogs that list or show the ad spend from the likes of Kantar and Adbrands but these covered the ad spend by industry and not by company.

Further, we tried to look through various credible market research reports which produce annual reports on global and US advertising spending along with references of key players geographically. Through the search, we found the reference of a report published by Ad Age which was related to the 200 leading national advertisers of 2018 but as the findings were secured behind the paywalls, the search could not render any relevant findings.

We also tried to look through various news articles in the US to identify any reference of leading US companies that have an ad spend of over or near $150 million and found that most of the articles listed major advertisers like P&G, Krogers, and Nestle who are leading advertisers and are US-based companies. But as these companies have already been covered in previous requests, hence could not duplicate them.

We also tried to check various ad agency websites and look through their list of clients to find any reference to high advertising spending company based in the US. We checked the official websites of Disruptive Advertising Inc., Vivial, Insignia SEO, Lounge Lizard, and Kobe Digital, but most of the information found through this search was related to the advertising work conducted by these agencies and no financial information was published publicly. Hence, in view of the above findings, it is concluded that the US companies that have an ad spend of over $150 million were already covered, and therefore, N/A has been encoded in rows 183-202 of the attached spreadsheet.
Part
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Part
11

Branding vs Performance Marketing

90% of companies spending $46,000 to $150,000 a month on commissions plan to increase investment in Performance marketing. Performance marketing continues to grow at a lightning pace and is predicted to grow at the rate of 10% through 2020. Top companies spent about $1,000,000 to $211,000,000 on their branding (logo).

Performance Marketing

  • Performance marketing is a comprehensive term that refers to online marketing and advertising programs in which advertisers and marketing companies are paid when a specific action is completed such as a sale, lead, or click.
  • The cost of this performance-based business model is dictated by the advertiser and the agency on a cost-per-acquisition (CPA) or cost-per-lead (CPL) basis.
  • Performance marketing continues to grow at a lightning pace and is predicted to grow at the rate of 10% through 2020.
  • 90% of companies spending $46,000 to $150,000 a month on commissions plan to increase investment in performance marketing.
  • An average of 62% of brand marketing budget goes to performance marketing.
  • 55% of performance marketers use social media as their main marketing platform.
  • 25% of teams with more than 100 members drive over $50 million in annual performance marketing revenue
  • The benefits of performance marketing include tracking ability, low risk, high ROI, extending advertising reach, and third-party validation.

Performance marketing trends

1. Fraud Protection

  • Marketers need to know that they can engage in affiliate and performance marketing initiatives with strong protection against fraud.
  • Advertising fraud and marketing fraud will never be 100% eliminated, but marketers need to be assured that the vast majority of their spend is warranted, safe, and fraud-free.

2. Automation & AI

  • Managing partnerships at scale requires attention to detail and care, but automation can help. Knowing which partners are meeting, exceeding, or failing to meet acceptable parameters is great.
  • Automatically setting levels at which affiliates are warned, turned off, or dialed up is even better.

3. Transparency & Openness

4. Alignment of Incentives

  • If performance marketers are simply incentivized to provide traffic, leads, or other top-of-funnel inputs, they will do exactly that. But if they are incentivized to drive actions that result in provable ROI and can be properly measured to do so, then incentives are aligned between partners and brands.

5. Owned Platforms

  • When brands own their platforms, they set the rules which enables transparency, alignment, and fraud protection. It also ensures that brands don’t pay more than what they need to for services rendered.

Branding

  • Branding is the process of creating a name, logo, symbol, and personality to represent your product or service.
  • Brands become valuable when customers associate high value and quality products or services with the brand.
  • Branding is vital because it creates a memorable imprint on the consumers’ brain that helps establish awareness and long-term loyalty.
  • Big companies spent about $1 million to $211 million in their logo.
  • Nearly half (48.9%) of organizations report that they will increase spending on employer branding to make their open positions easier for ideal candidates to find.
  • Companies are putting more thought and budget into capturing the essence of the organization and effectively marketing those brand messages to attract candidates who would be the best fit for their team.

Branding Trends

1. Illustrating for engagement

  • Brands are constantly searching for new ways to engage audiences and many of them are discovering that art and illustration is a good way to go about this.
  • More and more businesses are incorporating art and artists into their branding arcs.
  • Google incorporating art and illustration into its own on boarding processes and Facebook adding illustrations to its branding proves that companies are using art to connect with their audiences on a personable level.

2. Incorporating minimalism to the maximum

  • Art trend is a minimalist trend and it is very likely to prevail.
  • Minimalism makes sense because it's visually appealing. It may especially be helpful in the case of B2B companies simplifying processes through tools like intercom and sales force.
  • Back-to-basics minimalism is also resonating with customer-facing businesses like Brandless which focuses on being straightforward and essential.
  • Minimalism is essentially a bare-bones, pared-down approach that applies clean colors, simple graphics, and easy-to-understand processes and interfaces.

3. Reflecting millennials' influence

  • Millennials are gaining buying power and more decision-making power because they’re now adults with jobs and incomes.
  • The Gillette advertisement was a good example of a brand trying to appeal to young age groups. Gillette has faced millennial criticism for their pricing disparity between razors meant for males and females.
  • Planet Fitness, is a gym that appeals to millennial values by fronting affordability and their policy of being a judgment-free zone. As such, the franchise chain has seen rapid growth and success.
  • Many brands are similarly trying to make the shift from baby boomer-focused brands to millennial-forward ones.

4. Utilizing creativity in online domain names

  • With more and more businesses taking up more online, it is increasingly difficult for new businesses to find a traditionally desirable exact match online.
  • The extension.com is still king, but the scarcity of exact-match domains is forcing many businesses to get creative with their domain names and social media handles. (source5)
  • At the same time, establishing a strong domain name is an important investment where a budget of $2,000 can open up various creative domain options.
  • Some of the most creative domain phrases include Square’s SquareUp.com, Ruby Receptionist’s CallRuby.com, and Trusted’s UseTrusted.com. Such phrase-based names offer a creative way for businesses to prompt an action or remain memorable to users.

5. Getting more personal, not corporate

  • Having named over 20,000 companies, getting personal is a micro-trend meant to attract millennials and gen-Z-ers who tend to distrust corporations.
  • Many brands using real people in their branding comes across as young, edgy, and cool.
  • A name can align one's business with audience or set them apart from the competition as a fresh, innovative way Apple did.

Digital branding advertising spending in the United States by industry — 2015

reasons why performance marketing is outpacing brand marketing

Your Research team applied the following Strategy:

Despite an extensive search, we were unable to find the branding campaign spent for companies with large ad spend in the United States. Our first strategy was to examine market reports and research studies in sources such as Plunket Research, Ibisworld, Mintel, S&P Global and Market Research. We found relevant information on Branding Market Report & Analysis on Market Research. However, it is blocked behind a paywall.

Our second strategy was to look in media sources, magazines, and blogs such as Entrepreneur, Forbes, Exchange Wire, SHRM among others. But, we found no pre-compiled information in these sources. But, through this strategy we were able to find the Digital Branding Advertising Spend per industry in the United States through Statista.

Lastly, we scanned the official websites of big companies in the United States with large ad spend to check if they have any information on their branding campaign spending. However, we were unable to locate the required information.
Part
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Part
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Ad KPIs

Based on several publications from experts in the field, the preferred KPI's of advertisers and ad agencies are ROI, click-through rates, conversion rates, retention rates, and cost-per-acquisition rates. Each of these KPIs was chosen because it is crucial in measuring the performances of ad campaigns on any marketing channel from the planning stage to the post launch stage.
  • Advertising metrics help managers track the performance of marketing campaigns from the planning stage to the post-launch stage by offering hard data insights on return on investment, click through rates, reach, and audience impressions.
  • To track the success of an ad campaign, the following key metrics are essential: ROI, conversation rate, reach, cost-per-acquisition, viewability rates, and frequency of views.
  • The cost-per-acquisition (CPA) shows the amount of money needed to acquire a new lead in a given channel (cost divided / the number of conversions). The CPA also provides an understanding of the ROI.
  • The retention rate is significant in tracking the success of a mobile advertising campaign as it shows how many people use an app more than once in a given time.
  • The key metrics for measuring digital advertising are the click-through rate, the conversion rate, and ROI.
  • A click-through rate is the percentage of people clicking a specific ad on a webpage.
  • The ROI provides a quantitative figure on the profitability of a marketing channel. It is calculated by dividing the generated revenue by the spend.
  • The conversion rate is the number of people that took action. There are web conversion rates, marketing-qualified leads, and sales-qualified lead conversion rates.



Part
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Part
13

Branding Initiative Timing

The last quarter of the year, from October to New Year, is the best time of the year for a company or an ad agency to kick off a branding initiative.

why this time of THE year is ideal

  • During the last quarter of the year, there are dates or events like the holiday season, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday and New Year's Eve which provide an excellent opportunity for companies to connect with their customers.
  • Companies and brand agencies can leverage the last quarter of the year holidays to kick off a branding initiative because the holidays are a great opportunity to give freebies and other away items of appreciation which display the company name.

October

November

  • Holiday promotions can start in early November 1st because this is when people start making plans for the holiday.
  • Companies can take advantage of this time to start raising brand awareness and kicking off their brand initiatives in preparation for the December rush.
  • According to a report by Facebook, 7% of people in the U.S shop on Single's Day (November 11). Companies can raise awareness of their brands on Single's Day as well as during Thanksgiving Day (November 22) as they might use social media channels to help people come together and tie these days to their brand.
  • Black Friday comes on November 23, but in the week leading up to this date, companies should be looking to build excitement for Black Friday offers or sales by kicking off their branding initiative.
  • According to Facebook, consumer conversions in the U.S are highest on Cyber Monday; shoppers are willing to spend money and engage with Cyber Monday ads on social media keen to spend their money and happy to engage with social media ads, which is a reason why companies should make brand awareness on this day.

December

  • According to a Facebook survey, 62% of people in the United States make their holiday purchases in December, with 25% of the respondents doing their holiday shopping between December 11 to December 20.
  • According to Statista, holiday sales make out over $80 billion in online sales each year.
  • The winter holidays are the best holidays for sales in the United States as they bring in almost $602 billion in revenue.
  • During Christmas, over 800 million posts related to the holidays are published, making it the most active day of the holiday season.
  • December is a great time for companies to promote their brand by simply wishing their followers all the best for the holidays.
  • According to a survey by Facebook, 34% of all conversions between December 22nd and January 9th could be attributed to discussions related to New Year’s resolutions, making it a reason to promote a company's brand for these dates.
  • Brands can leverage the New Year to align their brand with "improvement of life" sentiments.
  • Companies can face the challenge of staying true to their brand while creating content that resonates with consumers, as it is also a time when competition for consumers is at its peak, so it’s essential to stand out to maximize on the branding potential.
  • Some brands have successfully created new traditions of their own, "becoming synonymous with the occasion itself."
  • Companies can provoke their consumers' memories and emotions by tying the holiday elements in their website design or on their social media platforms.

Additional Insights

  • The last quarter of the year could be the best for branding initiatives, but it is essential that companies choose which holidays are most celebrated by their customers to figure out which holidays or seasons most apply to their "particular customer base."
  • The best seasonal branding focuses on all year holidays, so companies should connect their brand with each season.
Sources
Sources

From Part 01
From Part 02
From Part 04
From Part 05
From Part 06
From Part 08
From Part 09