Analyzing B2B Marketing Trends

b2b 2012 benchmark findings

There’s been so much interesting analysis and insight in the marketing world that we’ll keep it rolling with some more white paper findings! Today, we’ll take a look at SEO through the B2B lense in MarketingSherpa’s 2012 B2B Marketing Benchmark Report.

Take a look at this graph, as it shows the average allocation of marketing budgets for B2B companies. From these results, we can assume that a higher allocation means a higher perceived result. As you can see, a majority of the B2B respondents invested resources into promoting their business through trade shows. The investment in tradeshows grew from 2010 from 7th most popular to 4th. As an example in the SEO industry, you can see this in marketing summits such as Online Marketing Summit, Search Engine Strategies, BlogWorld and more. At these events, you’ll find many business with booths or keynotes. Of course, the underlying purpose is to promote their own business, while helping those in need of it. Time will tell how successful this tactic is.

On a scarier but realistic note – from 2010 to 2011, B2B marketers felt like the effectiveness of online marketing drastically fell. The top contenders that were losing out on effectiveness include web design/optimization, SEO and email marketing.  A more detailed look at these findings can be found on page 3 of the free marketing report. Some reasons for this decrease in confidence include: economic hardships, fluctuating marketing goals, and the online environment (Panda updates, more competition, etc.)

Some more interesting findings are that 62% of B2B marketers feel like they don’t have enough resources for staffing, budgeting, or managing time. Some other obstacles include lead generation as a high priority and a big challenge. The next biggest priority and challenge is how to convert qualified leads into paying customers. If you’re in the B2B marketing industry, this might not be such new news to you. But seeing these responses put together in a quantified report should make you think about your tactics and strategies for 2012 a bit differently.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.