To say that 2020 has been a crazy year is an understatement. The coronavirus has affected just about every aspect of our lives, including business to business (B2B) technology, advertising and marketing.
B2B Digital Spend Is Up
According to Google, as of September, total B2B advertising saw a year-over-year decline of 9.6%. However, B2B digital advertising spend increased by 22.6%, eMarketer.com says. Digital advertising now accounts for 38% of B2B ad spend, up 28% over the previous year.
As a result of COVID-19, customers in this segment make product quality and relationships a priority. Meanwhile, marketers are focusing on retaining customers and building brand value over ROI.
B2B Marketer Priorities
Now seven months into the pandemic, marketers are looking ahead, according to The CMO Survey conducted by Duke University. It found 90% of B2B chief marketing officers think marketing strategies implemented during this uncertain and challenging time have opened up long-term opportunities for their organizations.
Furthermore, drawing from the Annual CMO Spend Survey by Gartner, Google cited three ways B2B technology marketers are striving to ensure their efforts and activities succeed going forward:
- Greater focus on brand strategy
- Investments in marketing automation
- Strengthening first-party data
Updated Search Data
Search demand growth for B2B categories dropped from 26% year over year for the week ending August 29, down from 30% for the week ending August 15. However, Google noted, the category was up 22% from the same time last year. The following three categories experienced rapid growth during this time:
- Customer service and support software
- Sales and marketing software
Virtual Events On the Rise
As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, Google says, digital advertising trends this year have included incorporating virtual events, a heightened focus on search to capture intent, more desktop activity, and lower cost-per-thousand impressions (CPM).
For a review of overall B2B marketing trends in 2020, click here.