Three quarters of marketers find B2B engagement harder than ever

A bee on a flower.
Three quarters of marketers find B2B engagement harder than ever
Duncan is an award-winning editor with more than 20 years experience in journalism. Having launched his tech journalism career as editor of Arabian Computer News in Dubai, he has since edited an array of tech and digital marketing publications, including Computer Business Review, TechWeekEurope, Figaro Digital, Digit and Marketing Gazette.

As many as 73% of marketers say that capturing the attention of B2B audiences is harder than it was a year ago, indicating a heightened problem in the B2B landscape.  

This is according to research from independent design consultancy The Frameworks, which surveyed 150 B2B marketers at organisations of more than 500 people, and explored the value of great design in the B2B sector and the barriers that prevent B2B marketers from making bolder creative decisions. 

The Frameworks also spoke directly to senior B2B marketers to get their personal perspective. Based on the insights gained, The Frameworks established five key ways that B2B marketers can reap the rewards of being bolder in their creative approach.  

Key findings from the research include: 

Lack of budget: 76% of B2B marketers say a lack of investment impacts their effectiveness as a marketer.  

Playing it safe: When it comes to design, 90% of larger organisations (2,000+ employees) said they are more likely to take the safe route than try something different.  

Heightened competition: 73% of marketers state that they struggle to capture the attention and engage B2B audiences in comparison to a year ago.  

The research findings suggest that B2B marketers know that bold, creative thinking can add value to the business – but that issues like budgetary pressures and the need to hit sometimes arbitrary performance metrics are proving too much of a hurdle when it comes to embracing a design-first culture. 

The report finishes with five pieces of advice for B2B marketers keen to re-engage with their audiences through a greater emphasis on design: 

Invest in results – Invest time in defining a set of results and metrics that are meaningful to the business without limiting creative freedom.  

Agency partners – Work with strong agencies to help invest and support a bold creative idea. 

Seek inspiration – Look at what other companies are doing: educate key stakeholders on what can be achieved through investment in a bold design. 

Be risk takers – Don’t underestimate the energy and fun that comes with taking a creative risk. 

Learn, grow and evolve – Not every idea is going to work, but don’t be tempted to return to safer options when something doesn’t. Learn from what’s happened and build those insights for the next creative adventure. 

Ben Bush, partner and head of strategy at The Frameworks sids: “It’s encouraging to see such an appetite for creativity among B2B marketers. And as capturing attention and engaging audiences becomes harder, it’s more important than ever that they address anything that’s stopping them embracing bolder creative decisions. 

“Great design connects at the most human level, and that applies just as much in a B2B environment as it does in any other walk of life.”

Interested in hearing leading global brands discuss subjects like this in person? Find out more about Digital Marketing World Forum (#DMWF) Europe, London, North America, and Singapore.

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