​Social media marketing and SEO are widely popular practices for digital marketers, dominating ad dollars in 2013.

​Global brands are spending more on digital advertising, a sign that content marketing and social marketing have become standard practice across industries. However, some channels saw exceptionally strong upticks in May 2013, while other media hubs suffered their worst declines in months.

According to the Standard Media Index (SMI), which analyzes booking data from Aegis, Havas, Interpublic and Publicis, Twitter and YouTube showed promising growth spurts over the last year. Ad spending on Twitter marketing efforts increased 95 percent year-over-year, and investments in YouTube grew 43 percent over the same time frame. Meanwhile, Yahoo and Facebook saw ad spend drop year-over-year by 4 percent and 1 percent, respectively.

Google continues to dominate digital ad spend, acquiring 13.7 percent more business last month than May 2012. This uptick highlights the proliferation of content for SEO and other paid search strategies. Brands understand that 95 percent of all web traffic discovers brands on Page 1 of Google search results, and marketers see the value of allocating resources toward content marketing to make sure​ ​important pages do reach people on the web.

SMI data also shows that spending on video content creation (up 92 percent year-over-year) and mobile marketing (up 122 percent year-over-year) saw their most impressive months to date, with brands optimizing their marketing plans to leverage the reach of these new channels.

As digital marketing becomes the go-to lead generation vehicle, marketers must adapt to evolving landscapes to produce web content with longer shelf lives. Blogging every day is a great way to pique consumers’ interests in search, but brands must have in-depth media behind regular updates to retain prospects attention online. Companies can’t depend on a few posts to drive their content ROI – they need high-quality collateral that conveys authority and expertise from long-term results.

Ted Karczewski is an Executive Communications Associate at Brafton. He works to develop his own voice and apply his passions to the evolving world of SEO and content marketing, but he doesn't shy away from writing for fun. After graduating from Suffolk University, Ted used his Communications degree to test out Sports Journalism before Marketing at Brafton.