Every year, marketers look to their peers for direction on the strategies and tactics they should adopt to see greater ROI from their marketing plan. And every year, Sagefrog helps provide that direction through our B2B Marketing Mix Survey and Report, gathering the opinions and experiences of professionals across several B2B industries, including software and technology, healthcare and life sciences, industrial and manufacturing, and professional and business services. The valuable contributions of survey respondents have been made more digestible with our larger report, which reveals the top marketing trends and tactics to watch in the year ahead. With this information in hand, you can become better equipped to make an informed investment as you plan your department’s 2022 budget and marketing program.
Here are the five biggest takeaways from this year’s B2B Marketing Mix Survey and our resulting 2022 B2B Marketing Mix Report.
🔝 Prioritize Paid & Organic Social Media Marketing
Businesses are rushing to improve their online presence, so this year, digital tactics have taken center stage. Social media jumped from the second most implemented tactic to the first for respondents. 83% of those surveyed say social media and social media advertising are one of their most implemented marketing tactics, and 34% label it as a top area of marketing spend. More marketers are learning the value of organic social media and paid social media marketing, choosing to invest in both to improve their online performance. With these tactics, you can create the exact group of ideal prospects to get in front of using retargeting ads and lookalike audiences on platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn, which make it easy for brands to identify, engage, and connect with qualified leads.
🎯 Leverage LinkedIn for Targeted Lead Engagement
Many people consider LinkedIn the perfect platform for B2B marketing. Through a few different ad formats, you can reach highly targeted audiences to provide demos and consultations, share thought leadership, and showcase your work to acquire and retain new customers. Using contact and company lists can help you achieve niche targeting that is difficult to obtain via other marketing channels. With a smart account-based marketing strategy, marketers can use both inbound and outbound marketing techniques to cast a smaller marketing and sales net, directly engaging with key accounts and business stakeholders to get results fast. If you’re searching for more support in your LinkedIn efforts, read through Sagefrog’s LinkedIn for Leads Quick-Start Guide and our audience-building tip sheet.
💻 Build Better Brand Awareness Across Channels
Improving brand awareness is now a top priority for most B2B marketers. In previous years, our report found that marketers prioritized generating sales- and marketing-qualified leads. But with so many businesses flocking to search engines, fighting to be seen and heard, it makes sense that more professionals are dedicating time and energy into building awareness for their products, services, and teams. In fact, this aligns well with our findings for the most implemented marketing tactics and top areas of spend. If you’re not taking your website and social media profiles seriously, now’s the time to start.
Marketers also say they are seeing higher engagement on Twitter, which can be used to support brand awareness and reputation management. Its post style can help your business build an approachable brand personality and tone of voice. Twitter is truly a multifunctional outlet and does serve a valuable function for those in the B2B industry. Try tweeting to spark conversation among relevant audiences, support existing customers, share company and industry updates, and dole out new nuggets of thought leadership.
🧪 Experiment with Marketing Personalization
Last year was one of the biggest pushes in marketing for the use of personalization. It can truly build brand loyalty when marketers focus on what’s important to prospects throughout the buyer’s journey and marketing funnel. It appears that 2021’s push for greater personalization in tactics like email, inbound, and account-based marketing is continuing to encourage teams to adopt related best practices and empathetic approaches. 41% of survey respondents say personalization will be one of their new marketing and sales strategies to employ in 2022, tying with social media marketing. That means there are still teams out there that haven’t put much effort into experimenting with this technique. The more you play around with personalizing tactics, the faster you’ll be able to identify what works for your brand and audiences. If you need some ideas on how to start, take a look at our blog for tips on using digital personalization in B2B marketing.
💲 Increase Your Marketing Budget for More Opportunities
Each business has its own way of determining budgets across departments, and if you’re in marketing, you know that we sometimes have to work with budgets that are less than ideal. Unfortunately, some business leaders don’t fully understand the value of marketing, and some marketers struggle with proving the ROI of their efforts. It can also be challenging to get a good idea of how much money you really need to execute tactics that will make the most of what you have. How much should you spend on marketing in 2022?
Well, it seems that marketing budgets are on the rise, according to survey participants. When asked how their company’s marketing budget will change from 2021 to 2022, the majority of respondents said they’ll be allocating more to their marketing. For some businesses, this extra spend might come from an annual revenue increase or an ability to consistently meet budgeting goals in previous years. But for those that must work with a tighter budget, you can make small SEO improvements to your website over a longer period of time or recycle high-performing content assets before creating new ones. It’s much easier to strategize and see success, however, when marketing teams have access to all the resources, they need to be productive and achieve results. So assess your own budget and try to advocate for yourself by asking for what you need to help your team succeed.
And if you’re embarking on establishing a budget a bit last minute this year, check out these eight tips for last-minute marketing budgets and our more detailed guidance on how to spend your digital marketing budget wisely.
🌟 Boost Your B2B Marketing Strategy with the Full Report
Now in its fifteenth edition, the B2B Marketing Mix Report is truly an easy and effective way to keep up with the marketing industry as it evolves. Sagefrog’s CEO and Co-founder, Mark Schumukler, explains the importance of this the best:
“Marketing is a fluid industry. Professionals are constantly searching for creative ways to market their products and services to stand out in crowded spaces, especially as more businesses invest in a strong online presence. But with new tactics come new best practices, so it’s important to stay in the loop and keep track of what works and what doesn’t so you can build a successful custom marketing program.”
Review the full results of this year’s survey by downloading your free copy of the 2022 B2B Marketing Mix Report. It contains detailed findings from survey participants and helpful tips that can take your marketing to the next level, whether you work in healthcare, technology, or professional services. Read the report today to reevaluate your marketing budget and plan and get on track for success in 2022. You can also explore takeaways from the 2021 B2B Marketing Mix for more helpful insights.
Need more marketing ideas and strategies? Our experienced team is here to help. Contact us today!