2008 B2B Marketing Forecast: Rise in Budgets, Online Spending (Updated)

2008 B2B Marketing Forecast: Rise in Budgets, Online Spending (Updated)

Most B2B marketers (some 60%) plan to increase their 2008 marketing budgets – but fully 79% plan to increase their online marketing budgets, according to BtoB magazine’s “2008 Marketing Priorities and Plans” study.

BtoB’s previous survey (2006) had found that nearly 76% of marketers planned to increase their online budgets in 2007.

Nearly 30% of marketers said their budgets would remain unchanged in 2008, and 10% said they plan to decrease budgets, according to the survey of 213 B2B marketers conducted online in the last week of November and the first week of December.

Among the key findings of the survey:

  • Some 62% of B2B marketers said their primary goal in 2008 would be customer acquisition, 19% cited brand awareness and nearly 12% pointed to customer retention.
  • Online will constitute more than one-third (nearly 34%) of marketing budgets in 2008, B2B marketers said; that’s up from the nearly 27% cited for 2007.
  • Online areas that marketers plan to increase next year are website development (74% of marketers said so); email (70%); search engine marketing (64%); video (40%); webcasting (39%); banners (36%); sponsorships (30%); and social media (26%).
  • Rating ad agency partners’ willingness and ability to adapt programs according to marketing goals, 54% of B2B marketers said “OK” and 41% said “excellent.”
  • Rating trade-media partners’ willingness and ability to tailor programs to fit marketing goals, nearly 66% said “OK” and 28% said “excellent.”
  • Nearly 20% of B2B marketers say they are using social media as part of the marketing mix: Among them, 40% use them for customer feedback, 31% for market research, 29% for advertising, 27% as a sales channel.

Among the other findings of BtoB’s survey of B2B marketers:

  • Event marketing will also be boosted: nearly 50% of marketers said they are planning a budget increase, compared with 44% last year.
  • In 2008 direct mail is expected to continue to grow: 49% of respondents are planning to increase their direct budgets next year, down slightly from 50% last year.
  • Increases in print budgets will also be down: nearly 28% of marketers expect to increase their print spending, compared with nearly 34% last year.
  • Some 69% of marketers plan to launch new ad campaigns in 2008.
  • And 36% plan to hire additional staff.

Editor’s note: An abbreviated version of this item was first published on December 7.