With the swift growth of start ups and entrepreneurial companies, there have been plenty of B2B companies that have come up. A Start up cannot deal with all aspects of a business and often opt to outsource work. Hence, there is a big business in logistic, marketing, distribution etc. For the last decade, the B2B marketing world has been changing very swiftly. The main reason for such as swift evolution is because the internet has increased the power of communication to a whole new level. However, at the same time, traditional marketing cannot be forgotten and still has a role to play in the B2B marketing.
Lead generation is still an important tactic used by marketers. Inside sales, telemarketing, company website, search engines, email marketing, case studies and more are the most used methods of lead generation. Of all the methods used, 39% of lead generation comes from outbound marketing such as inside sales and telemarketing, while the next biggest is of 27% which comes from events like tradeshows and networking functions. Contrary to popular belief, only 5% of B2B lead generation comes from social media. Of all the social media, the most depended upon platform for lead generation is LinkedIn.
The use of social media by B2B marketers is only set to increase. More and more start ups are creating their corners on social media platforms. LinkedIn is the most popular, followed by Facebook and then, Google Plus.
Large B2B firms prefer using YouTube to get their message out, while smaller ones are slowly building up their presence using Slideshare. The reason for this is that most start ups automatically have a presentation deck in place, while creating video content takes more effort.
Possibly, the biggest trend emerging is marketers becoming very focused on the content they are producing. B2B marketers have plans to increase their content marketing budgets by 54%. From 2012 to 2013, there has been an increase of 26% to 33% in the budget amount allotted to content marketing. The most effective B2B marketers spend as much as 39% of their budgets on content marketing.
There is a strong focus on what is being communicated and through what medium. The use of infographics has increased two fold since last year. Many marketers consider it the best way to communicate information across since it’s a good mix of visual and text information.
Industry trends, profile of target audiences and company features are the three most important factors that content marketing works on.
When it comes to measuring the success of a B2B marketing campaign, web traffic is consider the most important, followed by sale lead generation and social media sharing. Subscription of blogs and emails has seen a growing importance amongst marketers.
Right now, the future of B2B marketing is social media. A social media platform like LinkedIn has been built solely for professionals and this is where plenty of marketing occurs. However, there is also a strong trend of content marketing which may even over take the importance of social media. Even the tracking system will improve from following the number of clicks to observing discussions and social media shares.