Eight out of ten CEOs don’t trust the work done by their marketers.
That quieted the room pretty quickly when Jason Stewart, content strategist for ANNUITAS, tossed out that number to the audience at Wednesday’s Digital Pulse Boston 2013.
And yes, that’s not a figure you’re taking back to your C-Suite any time soon -- but the 2013 B2B landscape has bright spots too. Let's wander through some stats.
All in the Numbers
We found a number of intriguing numbers to share from Econsultancy’s most recent B2B Internet Statistics Compendium.
The annual report is really a meta-report collating a broad set of B2B industry data -- much of it in agreement, but some sources do conflict. So a thorough reading is in order for those deeply involved in this space.
The London-based research and analysis firm published this compendium in September, but sourced information from a range of reports that have been release over the last 12 months or so.
Brand Awareness vs. Lead Generation
Brand is a buzzword and important to many marketers, right?
True still, but more so for B2C vs B2b. Only 40% say brand awareness is their top B2B marketing goal, while 82% said driving leads and sales was top of mind, distantly followed by thought leadership. Brand awareness seems, we think, more reserved for the PR world.
Banner Ads Not Dead
Think that banner and display advertising are dead? We’ve argued against the tactic already. However, more than a third of B2B marketers still use this approach.
Banners do trail online marketing strategies such as SEO/organic search (63%), social media marketing (60%), inbound marketing/content creation/blogs (53%) and search engine marketing/pay-per-click (41%).
Trade Shows Alive and Kicking
Guess what No. 1 is for average allocation of B2B marketing budgets? Good ole hand-shaking and card-giving at trade shows. That came in at 21% ahead of things like Website design (16%). So it’s true -- B2B marketers still have a spot in the exhibition hall at industry conferences.
Blogs Trails Social Networks
And while they’re in social, B2B marketers feel like a presence in actual social networks -- vs. blogs -- is the best route. You may think with a sea of trusteed bloggers out there like SharePoint Joel that the blog space is the place to be, but only 48% B2B marketers believe blogs is the most important B2B sea to swim vs. the 79% who said social networks.
Yes, direct mail, while under fire from the FCC, is still an effective tool for B2B marketers, according report numbers. The proportion of respondents planning to incorporate direct mail into their lead generation plans for the coming year grew from 52% in 2011 to 60% in 2012. And heck, Gartner’s talking about it still.
Marketing Target No. 1? Companies By Industry/Vertical
Targeting companies by industry/vertical is the most important thing to most B2B marketers and their organizations. More than half of B2B marketers say this target is No. 1 on their plates, with the next closest target being prospect title (46%).
Social Only for the B2C Crowd?
B2B social marketing effectiveness may never be fully proven, but the fact is most marketers are trying. Nearly 90% of North American B2B marketers use social media to distribute content. Still, knowing your B2B buying target’s habits on social media is still king here.