B2B Marketing Budgets – Data From SiriusDecisions


Posted: April 17, 2007 | Budgets

I came across some awesome benchmark data about B2B marketing budgets, courtesy of SiriusDecisions. Thanks to Mou Mukherjee of cadenceblog for sending me the presentation in the first place. (If you are not familiar with SiriusDecisions, you should be — they are doing some of the best research available on B2B marketing and sales. This presentation was part of a webinar they did with Rainmaker called Bridging the Gap Between Sales & Marketing.)

Their data show how B2B companies of various sizes allocate their marketing program budgets. Here are the budget allocations for B2B companies with $0-100M revenue:

  • Field Marketing / Demand Generation: 64.7%
  • Corporate Communications: 15.0%
  • Product Marketing: 9.5%
  • Branding/Advertising: 7.2%
  • Channel Marketing: 2.5%
  • Market Intelligence: 1.1%

SiriusDecisions further broke the Field Marketing / Demand Generation data into sub-categories, as follows (this is for all B2B companies, revenue from $0 to $1B+):

  • Tradeshows: 16%
  • Tele-prospecting: 13%
  • Email: 13%
  • Live events / seminars: 10%
  • Webinars: 9%
  • PPC Search Marketing: 5%
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): 4%
  • Other (direct mail, associations, online, etc.): 30%

Besides being useful for budgeting purposes, what can we learn from this? I’m not surprised that the largest spend is on the most measurable category, demand generation. That trend will continue as marketing works to be ever more accountable for driving revenue. At the same time, I’m baffled by the fact that the largest spend category within demand generation continues to be tradeshows. Surely companies do not find better ROI from tradeshow spending than they do from channels like search marketing and email? If you disagree, please let me know!

By the way, I know it’s been more than two weeks since my last post. My excuse is that Marketo launched our beta product last week and I’ve been swamped with customer meetings (including a few with folks I met through this blog!). So far, things are going great – but it does make it hard to find time to write worthy blog posts. I’ll do my best to keep posting at least once a week during the next few busy weeks, but if you’re looking for something to read in the meantime, be sure to check out the Big List of B2B Marketing Blogs.

Related Resources

  • http://www.b2bridge.eu Hans De Keulenaer

    Great data. But it would be good (in an ideal world) to compare how these various channels increase market presence.
    I’m not all that surprised that trade shows still represent a relatively large share of cost – a major trade show may cost in the mid 5 digits. Spending such budgets on webinars or e-mail marketing is much harder.
    For a while, I’ve been looking now for metrics to compare the effectiveness of traditional and new marketing media. In general, new media allow a cost reduction by an order of magnitude. But the quality of the contact is different as well. Any pointers on this would be very welcome.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/fiber-glass Mike Welling

    Has anyone ever actually measured the effectiveness of trade show marketing? I’ve worked them and can’t say that they ever paid for themselves. At least not up front. How can you track it anyway? You know who DOES make money? The trade show itself…

  • http://cadenceblog.typepad.com/ Mou Mukherjee

    Hey Jon,
    Thanks for the mention and I’m glad that you found something of interest in the presentation. It was a good webinar.
    In my experience, trade shows are not good for lead generation (but we don’t do that many).I guess if you find a show where you know there will be a large gathering of prospects for your product it could work. However, I think it is important to have pre-show and post-show activities. I found a podcast that Brian Carroll did with Ruth Stevens useful. If you are doing Tradeshows, I recommend listening to this podcast. You can find it here: http://www.startwithalead.com/article.asp?ARTICLEID=214
    Subsequently I have started reading Ruth’s book, hoping to improve the success of trade shows.
    I’m glad to hear that you have launched your beta and are busy with that!

  • http://profile.typekey.com/dtheus/ Dana Theus

    I, too, wonder about Trade Shows since their accountability is so difficult to track. As a marketer who looks to solve the budget puzzle constantly, it’s always seemed a vunerable category.
    However, in dealing with CXOs – particularly in smaller niches – I’m impressed with the potential for a few “good meetings” (with prospects or important customers) or a “bigger crowd at the booth” to allow the CXO to leave the show with a swagger in his walk. In the mind of some execs (again, particularly in smaller markets) a show can give them a “gut feel” for their placement in the market. Of course, this “gut feel” is probably only slightly more useful than “grandmother research”, but it has an impact on people nonetheless, and in that sense “matters”.
    Now, I still think that all expenditures need to come under scrutiny, but I tend to value Trade Shows now as more than just lead generators. I look at their overall PR potential and if all the important people at the show (inside and outside the company) leave with a swagger because the company showed itself well, I consider it as a success and pray one or two of the leads turns into a home run.

  • http://profile.typekey.com/dtheus/ Dana Theus

    Oh! And thanks for sharing the data. Very interesting. Hard to come by. Good to have.

  • http://www.mokummarketing.com/blog David Koopmans

    Jon, the stats are fantastic, but I can’t find anything on SiriusDecisions website about the research they have conducted. Did you get information from them on the sample or the methodology? Can you post this, or direct us to where we can find it?

  • http://blog.futurelab.net/2007/04/b2b_marketing_budgets_data_fro.html Marketing & Strategy Innovation Blog

    B2B Marketing Budgets – Data From SiriusDecisions

    by: Jon MillerI came across some awesome benchmark data about B2B marketing budgets, courtesy of SiriusDecisions. Thanks to Mou Mukherjee of cadenceblog for sending me the presentation in the first place. (If you are not familiar with SiriusDecisions, …

Jon (@jonmiller) is a VP and co-founder at Marketo. He is the author of multiple Definitive Guides including Marketing Automation, Engaging Email Marketing, and Marketing Metrics & Analytics. In 2010, The CMO Institute named Jon a Top 10 CMO for companies under $250 million revenue. Jon holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Harvard College and has an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Read Jon's Blogs

B2B Marketing Budgets – Data From SiriusDecisions

Follow Us

Most Shared

true colors feat

True Colors: What Your Brand Colors Say About Your Business [Infographic]

Instagram Infographic

What Your Instagram Filter Says About You [Infographic]

Visual Gold 2

Visual Gold! The New Revolution of Content Marketing [Infographic]

Revenue Performance Management Infographic

Revenue Performance Management: Making the Top Line Top Priority [Infographic]


The Evolution of Modern Marketing Automation [Infographic]