BELOW-THE-LINE activity accounted for a reduced share of marketers’ budgets in 1999, according to a poll of delegates at the Marketing Forum - the annual nautical jolly for major advertisers and their acolytes.

Based on a questionnaire issued to nearly 700 attendees, the above / below-the-line split moved from 63% / 37% in 1998 to 60% / 40% last year. The proportion of budgets allocated to sales promotion also fell 2.5% from the previous year; while loyalty schemes felt the pinch, grabbing just 1.7% of the average budget - the lowest level since 1994 [due, Debrief suspects, to the maturation of several major schemes and the fall-off in set-up costs].

However, figures from the study, released last month, also show that marketers intend to increase their b-t-l spend in 2000.