Email is a close second to social media among the tools being used by B2B companies, according to Breaking Down The Role Of The B2B Sales & Marketing Executive, a study by Delia.
Of the B2B executives polled, 59% say their firms are active in social, 55% in email, 54% in content marketing and 52% in video marketing.
Further down the list are public relations (43%), SEO (43%), trade shows (40%), trade advertising (38%), direct mail (37%) and cold-calling (33%).
These activities support the following marketing imperatives:
But this list of priorities differs slightly from that of the metrics being used to determine success:
All this is taking place during a period of apparent brand volatility. Of the firms represented here, 57% updated their brand in 2020 or 2021, versus 43% prior to that.
Here’s when B2B create or revise their marketing budgets:
Marketing is the top skill needed by B2B sales & marketing executives—47% of the respondents say so. Sales is next, with 38%, followed by leadership (34%) and branding (14%).
Marketing also gets more of the total budget at 42%, versus 33% for sales and 26% for branding.
Despite branding’s low budget portion, 90% add that brand is of high or very high importance in sales. And they rate brand and marketing as equally important contributors, by a score of 50-50.
Overall, 39% of employees do not understand their companies’ brands.
Who owns brand within organizations? Brand communications is headed by the sales & marketing leader in 59%, and by the CEO in 26%. And 13% cite another executive.
Brand promise is led by sales & marketing executives at 52%, by the CEO in 40% and by another executive in 6%.
In addition, sales & marketing execs run brand identity at 55%, and the CEO at 31%.
The big shots tend to come from outside — 83% have spent eight years as head of sales & marketing, and have been at their firms for the same amount of time.
In contrast, 17% have spent 12 years at their companies, and are the owner or founder, or another senior-level person. But some worked their way up from intern or sales rep positions.
Delia surveyed marketing executives during April 2021.