Study shows that B2B brands will focus on building out their websites to improve online branding.

Marketers put together priority lists to help determine where resources should be funneled over the next month, quarter or even year. In 2012, B2B brands dedicated significant time and money toward developing content marketing strategies for the web. The Content Marketing Institute noted that 91 percent of B2B companies used custom content to engage their audiences last year, using an average of 12 tactics to build and strengthen rapport with new and existing customers. This practice remains important in 2013, but organizations have shifted their focus, putting a greater emphasis on how they’ll get their branded content in front of prospects.

B2B use websites for contentAccording to a new report from BtoB Magazine, 93 percent of marketers will allocate resources toward building out their website content. However, marketers already have their content creation strategies in place, so now web development and user experience have become top priorities for 2013.

BtoB Magazine’s “2013 Outlook: Marketing Priorities and Plans” noted that fewer than half of U.S. B2B marketers plan to increase their overall budgets in 2013, but 67.2 percent will up digital investment. Where will businesses put their money? The study suggests organizations will fund new web development projects in 2013 to drive, engage and retain web traffic. Seventy percent of survey respondents indicated that they would spend more money in 2013 to support their websites and associated channels. Of course, email marketing (62 percent), social media marketing (56 percent) and video marketing (55.8 percent) will all receive greater pieces of the pie this year, but these channels fall well below web development in terms of priority levels.

B2B Marketing Plan 2013Web development can span the spectrum from full-blown makeovers to simple SEO tasks that boost online visibility. Overall, the study suggests that B2B brands understand that their websites have become educational media hubs that play important roles in lead generation, nurturing and conversion. Therefore, instead of neglecting their information portal, marketers see new opportunities in their companies’ web presences, and must focus on creating quality content and perfecting the homes that house written and multimedia projects. BtoB Magazine’s study may seem like organizations have made a steep transition from content marketing to web development, but the two practices support one another, and all signs point toward another year of generating engaging content as part of overall marketing plans.

Ted Karczewski is an Executive Communications Associate at Brafton. He works to develop his own voice and apply his passions to the evolving world of SEO and content marketing, but he doesn't shy away from writing for fun. After graduating from Suffolk University, Ted used his Communications degree to test out Sports Journalism before Marketing at Brafton.