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Google Points to Major Trends in B2B Space
eMarketer / June 14, 2013
Mike Miller works closely with business-to-business (B2B) marketers across a variety of industry verticals—ranging from oil/energy and manufacturing/industrial to business services—that are using Google’s digital platforms in order to advertise. He spoke with eMarketer’s Tobi Elkin for the B2B Perspective Series about trends he’s seeing in the B2B marketing space.
eMarketer: What digital platforms and advertising services are Google’s B2B customers using?
Mike Miller: We still see a very strong orientation around search. We see some customers using display advertising and some moving into social, although they’re still trying to figure some of that out. We’ve also seen some customers starting to make use of video platforms. For us, that’s YouTube. Mobile is also a theme, although that cuts across each of those platforms.
We did some research last year with Compete, and we saw a sea change in terms of internet usage within the B2B space. Typically, you see incremental change from one year to the next, but in our research we saw a jump from 71% usage in 2011 to 88% in 2012 in terms of researching business purchases in the B2B space. That is a huge jump in one year. We also asked B2B marketers how they’ve used search to research business purchases and saw a 23% change year over year—it went from 67% of B2B marketers who relied on search for their business purchases to 90%.
eMarketer: What are B2B marketers using video channels on YouTube for?
Miller: It depends on the product or service. One category that’s popular is the how-to video, especially in the B2B space, because the products tend to be more complex. They might need some configuration, and you want to understand that before you make a purchase. The video also might feature a thought leader.
If you’re a B2B marketer looking to purchase a professional service, you might want to understand who that person is or [know more about] that firm or the perspective that they bring. It might be that you want to find out more about the ecosystem and about what is happening in the space. Often, video is a great way to be able to convey that [instead of] putting out a white paper or having it appear on your website.