How Did Covid Change B2B Marketing?

Patricia Hursh March 26, 2023

Here is a compilation of survey responses, market insights, and industry trends that illustrate how the Covid-19 Pandemic changed the course of B2B marketing – perhaps forever.

The B2B buying process will remain (mostly) remote

  • 70-80% of B2B decision makers now prefer remote interactions – due to ease of scheduling, travel cost savings, and overall safety.  This is true even in sectors where field-sales models have traditionally dominated.
  • Sellers also prefer digital, self-serve, remote engagement over face-to-face interactions.
  • 90% of B2B decision makers expect this remote model will continue for the foreseeable future.

B2B online order value has increased dramatically

  • Before Covid, B2B e-commerce was primarily used for smaller-ticket items. 
  • Today, 70% of B2B decision makers say they are open to making remote purchases in excess of $50,000; 27% would spend more than $500,000; 15% over $1MM.

B2B sellers embrace video conferencing and chat

  • Digital channels have emerged as the predominant method for closing sales with B2B customers.
  • Video conferencing is up 41% and Chat has increased 23% since the beginning of the Covid pandemic.

B2B marketers increase focus on self-serve content and thought leadership

  • 44 – 60% of B2B marketers are increasing their focus on consultative resources. 
  • Moving beyond traditional product marketing, companies are providing resources designed to help customers progress along their journey.
  • Top priorities include: content publishing, thought leadership, webinars, and executive communications.

B2B marketers shift focus from lead gen to relationship management

  • More and more, marketing success is measured based on journey enablement and sales impact… not just leads.
  • B2B marketers are shifting their mindset from narrowly-focused lead-gen metrics to metrics that show how marketing supports the entire buyer journey. 
  • With the migration to a remote customer journey there are more digital touch points, and each interaction takes on new significance given less face-to-face engagement. 

Additional Resources:

McKinsey: Eight Charts That Show How Covid Changed B2B Sales Forever

Edelman: How B2B Companies Are Adapting Customer Engagement Strategies During Covid

Accenture: The New World of B2B Sales

Hubspot: 2022 Website Performance Trends (Traffic & Conversion Data, by Industry)

HubSpot: 2022 Marketing Benchmarks

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Patricia Hursh is the president and founder of Avid Demand. Today she leads the agency’s Client Service Department, guiding multi-functional teams to ensure bottom-line business results for Avid Demand clients.  Patricia specializes in developing digital marketing strategies and full-funnel marketing solutions for B2B companies.