A new study suggests that businesses may be choosing to abandon online marketing platforms for more traditional direct mail alternatives.

A survey by VerticalResponse found that more than half (54 per cent) of marketers will not be making use of banner advertisements next year.

Similarly, a quarter (24 per cent) of businesses surveyed said they will not be employing search engine marketing (SEM) in 2010, despite many conceding SEM may play a vital role in their future success.

The study, which questioned 831 businesses, found that two-thirds (68 per cent) of respondents plan to increase their use of social media marketing in the foreseeable future.

Janine Popick, chief executive and founder of VerticalResponse, said: “While small businesses are learning the value of social media, marketers need to help them see the value of integrating search engine marketing such as Google, Yahoo and Bing into their campaigns.”

Andrew Girdwood, head of search at Bigmouthmedia, recently urged firms to make the most out of social data when planning display ad campaigns.

Posted by Suzanne Stock – Communications Director, HR, Online Advertising, General Marketing