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9 of 10 B2B marketing leaders report content budget increases—global study finds nearly half will spend $500,000 or more in 2024

by | Jul 2, 2024 | Marketing, Public Relations

After a post-pandemic stretch of crippling budget cuts across comms departments in many industries, new research from B2B tech comms and content agency 10Fold Communications reveals that the taps are starting to flow again in an ever-evolving landscape of B2B and B2B2C marketing in which content has become a central driver of sales success with its proven ability to generate qualified leads and influence buyer decisions.

The firm’s 2024 B2B marketing report, The Engagement Equation: How B2B Tech Marketers Are Creating and Delivering Content That Captivates in 2024, based on a survey of 450 marketing decision makers in five countries on two continents conducted by Sapio Research, explores how these execs are planning, developing and measuring content in 2024.

B2B marketing

Key findings:

Content groups get a budget boost

Nine of 10 (91 percent) B2B and B2B2C marketing leaders surveyed report annual budget increases. Forty-six percent of marketing leaders have a content budget between $500,000 to $5 million for content production and distribution in 2024. Twenty percent report having a budget between $500,000 and $999,999 for content in 2024.

A lot more content

Forty percent of marketing executives expect to produce three to five times more content than last year, with 48 percent publishing content daily.

AI adoption

Eight of 10 (81 percent) of marketers reported using AI to streamline content creation.

External support

Nearly all (93 percent) execs leverage third parties to create and distribute content.

Social posts and video steal the show

Marketing executives ranked social posts and videos as their top format priorities for content in 2024.

Marketing turns to data-driven evaluation

In 2024, marketing leaders are using tools like web analytics and CRM software to evaluate the content (over sales opinion, etc.) and trigger content creation decisions.

“The marketing leaders we engaged through Sapio Research have clearly dedicated substantial budgets and resources to their content strategies,” said Susan Thomas, CEO of 10Fold Communications, in a news release. “Our year-over-year data shows a strong trend: marketers are not only open to adopting new technologies and innovative approaches but are also willing to overhaul their entire strategies, processes, and content formats. This commitment is driven by the goal to produce high-quality content that truly resonates with and reaches their target customer profiles.”

B2B marketing

Marketers scale budgets to fuel content boom

Marketers acknowledge the vital role of content marketing and are increasing budgets to fuel its growth. When asked about increasing budgets, the vast majority (91 percent) have boosted their budgets, and 46 percent are investing at least $500,000 annually. This financial commitment aligns with the global trend of heightened content creation, as 92 percent of marketers report producing more content compared to the previous year. Nearly 40 percent have increased their output by three to five times.

AI and external resources fuel content boom

When questioned about using AI for content creation, 81 percent of marketers confirmed using AI (36 percent frequently, 45 percent occasionally). Only 19 percent said they rarely (15 percent) or never (4 percent) used AI for content creation. Another content efficiency boost in content creation and delivery was the use of third parties such as agencies and contractors—with 93 percent of marketing leaders using third-party resources. Thirty-one percent of companies outsource 50-to-74 percent of their content development, and 53 percent of companies outsource 50-to-100 percent of their content development—adding capacity and speed to their content development capabilities.

The power couple: Social media and video

Social media content tops the list of preferred content preferences, with 46 percent of marketing leaders prioritizing this content format for 2024, with video a close second (41 percent). For marketers with budgetary constraints, social media offers a cost-effective approach to scaling content and aligns with growing audience preference for shorter formats—compared to resource-intensive, longer formats like eBooks and white papers (used by less than 15 percent of marketers).

B2B marketing

Data-driven content: Leveraging analytics

The marketing landscape is saturated with content, placing immense pressure on generating marketing qualified leads (MQLs). Nearly half (48 percent) of global companies are now making content creation a part of their routine. Notably, this trend is especially prominent among B2B organizations (37 percent) and those with larger budgets. While Google Analytics remains the primary tool (42 percent) for measuring content effectiveness, other website and CRM tools are a strong second (36 percent). Interestingly, these same website analytics combined with research, trigger decisions for new content for at least 50 percent of marketers making content decisions.

Download the full findings here.

10Fold engaged Sapio Research to deploy an online survey to marketing executives with decision-making and budget authority within B2B or B2B2C technology companies in the United States, Canada, France, Germany and the United Kingdom. In all, 450 marketing executives completed the survey and the results are accurate to a +/- of 4.6 percent at a 95 percent in 100 percent confidence limit assuming a result of .05 percent.

Richard Carufel
Richard Carufel is editor of Bulldog Reporter and the Daily ’Dog, one of the web’s leading sources of PR and marketing communications news and opinions. He has been reporting on the PR and communications industry for over 17 years, and has interviewed hundreds of journalists and PR industry leaders. Reach him at richard.carufel@bulldogreporter.com; @BulldogReporter

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