As we head into November and the start of the Holiday Season, B2B marketers are getting into their budgeting mode. With the cloud of economic uncertainty still hanging over many industries, it is not surprising that B2B marketers are shifting their 2011 budgets more towards lower-cost inbound eMarketing tactics.
MarketingSherpa asked more than 900 B2B marketers how they expected their marketing budgets to change for 2011. The chart below shows the breakdown between different marketing tactics and the projected increase/decrease for the next year.
While low cost is very important, I think there are other key reasons for the shift towards inbound marketing. They are:
- Change in buyer behavior – the B2B buyer is now in control and will only interact with your salespeople on their preferred schedule, probably towards the tail end of their buying cycle
- Accountability and ROI – inbound marketing coupled with lead nurturing and scoring from marketing automation, optimizes the funnel for marketing to demonstrate contribution to revenues and prove ROI
I have written several posts about some of the inbound marketing tactics mentioned in the chart. You may want to read the following:
- Industrial Website design and management
- Download the free Website redesign guide from my company’s Website
- Social media marketing
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- B2B Email marketing
A word of caution here about social media marketing – yes, it is easy and free to set up Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts but it is not cheap, and neither is it quick to achieve measurable results. There are real costs associated with planning and strategy development, staff and/or outsourcing expenses. Many B2B marketers continue to be puzzled about accurately measuring the success of their social media campaigns.
How are you allocating your 2011 B2B marketing budget? Any particular strategy or tactic gaining on something that you did in 2010?