Scott Monty

 

According to a post by the Center for Media Research, Omniture has developed a white paper that predicts the near future of BtoB marketing turning more significantly toward online. Omniture asserts that in order to take advantage of the Web 2.0 environment, businesses not only need to embrace the trend, but need to be ahead of the curve.

According to the report and the Direct Marketing Association:
"By 2008 online marketing efforts will be the dominant media for business-to-business initiatives. Traditional direct mail, industry print, and events and promotions will take a back seat to more efficient and sophisticated online efforts. A Forrester Research study in 2005 indicated that by 2008, online marketing will be more ubiquitous than anything except in-person events (including sales calls)."
When you consider that 45% of B2B decision makers spend 5 or more hours a week online researching products, according to the CMO Council & KnowledgeStorm, it follows naturally that more budget should be spent on online marketing to this group. Consider the challenges:

Top B2B Marketing Challenges

Challenge

% of Respondents

Reaching decision makers

63%

Deepening relationships with customers

63

Measuring marketing results

57

Generating more leads

56

Improving lead quality

52

Increasing product awareness

52

Developing brand awareness

49

Source: Omniture Online Marketing Guide, 2006


One way around the perennial challenge of getting in front of the right executives for lead generation and better relationship marketing is targeted niche material online that speaks directly to their needs.

Take a look at trends in marketing tactics from the last two years versus what is predicted for one year from now:

B2B Marketing Tactic Trends (% of respondents)

Tactic

Used in 2004/05

Expect to use in 2008

In-person events

60.2%

60.8%

Direct mail

56.2

48.7

Online marketing

48.7

54.6

Newspapers

46.9

35.6

Custom publications

45.8

44.1

Industry specific/trade magazines

45.4

48.3

Printed newsletters

43.5

35.1

TV

41.4

44.1

General business magazines

41.3

38.6

Public relations

37.7

41.6

Radio

35.3

33.0

Printed directories

26.8

24.8

Source: Omniture Online Marketing Guide, 2006


Now is the time to begin building best practices in online marketing tactics. Be it new media, "traditional" online strategy, or some mix, it's important now more than ever to embrace lead with these options.

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