According to a new survey conducted by Demand Gen Report, nearly half of B2B marketers have increased their earned media spend over the past year. These B2B marketers are shifting budget and priority to earned media as they struggle with declining response rates from traditional investments in paid media.
To see the full report detailing the study, download: Earned Media Influential in Performance Marketing
Driving brand awareness is still the top goal (89%) for earned media investments, but the survey also showed more marketers are integrating earned channels into their performance marketing and demand gen goals.
When asked which performance goals they were supporting with earned media, B2B marketers ranked the following responses:
- Driving pipeline (66%)
- Increasing revenue (50%)
- Improving overall customer experience (40%)
- Increasing retention and customer satisfaction (38%)
In addition, a majority of marketers report they are expanding their use of earned media as part of their overall demand generation efforts.
The survey also showed that the increase in earned media efforts has proven effective for most B2B organizations, with 90% ranking their programs as somewhat (61%) or very (29%) effective at achieving their goals.
Shifting spend and media strategies
According to Demand Gen Report’s survey, nearly half of B2B marketers (48%) have seen their earned media spend increase over the last year, compared to only 39% who said their paid media budget had increased.
The push for better metrics
The study found that while many B2B organizations would like to shift even more of their budgets to earned media, two primary challenges surfaced as impediments to expanding programs:
- Identifying and connecting with key influencers (cited by 57%)
- Measuring financial impact of programs/ROI (cited by 52%)
In addition, 70% of respondents indicated they would use earned media more if the channel was directly attributed back to financial impact and ROI. Another 43% said they would increase investment in earned media if it was integrated with other channels, and 35% said they would expand their use if it was more automated.
Assuming the tool set and expertise continues to expand in earned media in the coming years, it is fair to expect investments in this channel to continue to climb, especially as messaging-rich formats such as native advertising and sponsored content continue to grow.
Get the full report
Read the complete report to dive deeper into the study’s benchmark research, and discover insights and perspective on emerging trends in earned media.
Download the report Earned Media Influential in Performance Marketing to better understand the drivers for the increased reliance on earned media, and why B2B buying decisions now rely on peer review and industry thought leaders.