Sometimes you have to look past your own test paper and see what everybody else is writing, not to copy exactly what you see but just to know what’s going on out there. In a fiercely cutthroat world like B2B Marketing, competition will either make you or break you. Yes, everyone competes, but companies don’t bring each other down; your enemy is not one another – but rather your own. If you stop yourself from stepping up to the challenge, you will be routed out of the game.
So before you get so preoccupied with your own futile efforts, you have to ask around for a reality check: How is B2B Marketing doing these days? Has it entirely been eaten by social media? Are traditional methods now dead? How do other companies generate leads? Do event marketing, mobile marketing, and email marketing still make the cut?
For the record
Traditional tactics are very much still alive. 74% of B2B marketers surveyed by the Earnest Agency still consider direct mail as helpful. 72% say the same about event marketing and 71% about email marketing. The fact that they still consider these methods as effective may be a surprise for some people, and that’s saying something, because in this industry, “effective” might as well equate to “profitable”.
For the new school age of B2B Marketing, everyone must be thinking right now that social media is dominating the cyber scene. Well, that may be the case in a year or two from now, but as it turns out, this year is still won by SEO, which is used by 75% of the marketers surveyed. For them, search result rankings still create the biggest impact for the, generating leads with high conversion rates compared with other methods.
Of course, it is closely followed by social media at 72%. Although nobody is in denial of its rapidly-growing influence over the entire market in general, most B2B Marketers still feel that the quality of leads coming from their Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ campaigns are still premature and not grounded on actual needs and opportunities. In the mean time (while waiting for social media marketing to fully ripen), they wish to stick with SEO.
Content marketing comes in at third, with 54% of the respondents embracing this method. This is a more elaborate attack on online presence, utilizing strong content to attract buyers and giving subtle (or otherwise) hints about their product/services. Aside from blogs, they establish articles on their own websites, which include newsletters, case studies, and videos, which will also be published externally if necessary.
Mobile marketing is used by 15% of the marketers, which they consider more of a “back-up” strategy which cannot stand on its own because of its many limitations. Hence, the B2B community is still ambivalent on the eventual effectiveness of mobile marketing, although it’s now considered to be on its way to becoming mainstream among small to mid-size companies.
- The social media marketing budget allocation for each company grew 9% from 2012, which now comprises 23% of all of their marketing allocations in 2013. Along with this growth is their faith on social media to return their investment by generating leads and more business opportunities.
- 21% of the companies surveyed said that social media has become an important key to their company’s success over the past 6 months. This realization is rooted from the sudden surge in their company’s recognition, which is always as important as generating revenue and accomplishing goals.
Actively engaging a company in the world of social media is a major, critical decision, because if done the wrong way, this move can destroy a company’s reputation forever just as fast as it can fortify it. Just like any business maneuver, social media marketing must be premeditated painstakingly, and it wouldn’t hurt to seek assistance from the experts.