A new report from HiveFire has shown the evolution of B2B marketing away from traditional marketing tactics toward online content marketing. Today, 82% of B2B marketers say that they now use content marketing in their programs, making it more popular than search marketing (70%), events (68%), and public relations (64%).
This change shows that B2B companies are realizing the need to create a digital dialogue with their market. It also shows the increased value of digital marketing for the small and medium sized B2B company, which enables them to compete with their larger competitors.
Among surveyed B2B marketers, content marketing is more than two times more popular than advertising (print, TV, or radio) (32%).
Here are some additional findings from the report:
Objectives of B2B Content Marketing Programs
- Engaging customers and prospects (82%)
- Driving sales (55%)
- Educating the marketplace (44%)
- Increasing Web traffic (43%).
Content Curation Bigger Part of B2B Marketing Strategy
56% of B2B marketers are now using a content curation strategy (relying on some content from other sources), up 17% from the adoption level reported six months earlier. Moreover, among those now using content curation, 74% say the program is successfully driving results.
Lead Generation Important Marketing Objective
Overall, B2B marketers cite the following as the most important marketing objective in their organizations:
- Lead generation (78%)
- Establishing thought leadership (35%)
- Boosting brand awareness (35%)
- Increasing Web traffic (28%)
- Improving search results (24%)
Top Challenges for B2B Marketing
B2B marketers face standard challenges around budget and staff, but content creation has crept up as a much greater challenge than it had been in the past.
- Limited budget (28%)
- Limited staff (23%)
- Creating new content (16%)