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16 Best B2B Marketing Channels to Consider in 2024

Last Updated on 24th Jun, 2024 | Ecommerce

16 best b2b marketing channels to consider in 2024

What are the Most Effective B2B Marketing Channels in 2024?

For B2B businesses, selecting the right marketing channels is critical for B2B success, as marketers must identify where their audience gathers online and which channels align with the buyer’s journey. In 2024, businesses must refine their marketing strategies and explore new avenues to engage and convert potential clients. This comprehensive guide delves into the 16 best B2B marketing channels to consider in 2024, provides an overview of the importance, benefits, and best practices for each channel, as well as tips for integrating and optimizing a multi-channel B2B strategy. By understanding how to leverage these powerful marketing avenues, B2B companies can build brand authority, generate high-quality leads, and drive profitable growth.

What is B2B Marketing?

B2B (business-to-business) marketing refers to marketing strategies and tactics focused on promoting products or services to other businesses rather than individual consumers. The goal of B2B marketing is to generate leads, nurture prospects, and drive revenue by building relationships between businesses.

B2B marketing differs from B2C (business-to-consumer) marketing in several key ways:

  • The target audience is other businesses rather than the mass consumer market. This often requires more personalized outreach.
  • The sales cycle is longer and more complex, involving multiple stakeholders in the purchase decision.
  • Purchases are driven by logic and return on investment rather than emotion or impulse. Messaging must focus on business needs.
  • Content and messaging are more technical and detailed, aimed at educating rather than entertaining.

Importance of Choosing the Right B2B Marketing Channels

With a complex target audience and sales cycle, selecting the right marketing channels is critical for B2B success. Marketers must identify where their audience gathers online and which channels align with their buyer’s journey.

The optimal marketing mix combines multiple channels to maximize visibility and conversions across the funnel, from lead generation to customer retention. As budgets and priorities shift, the channel strategy must stay agile.

This guide will overview 16 of the best B2B marketing channels to help build a comprehensive, integrated strategy for 2024.

The 16 Best B2B Marketing Channels in 2024

  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Content Marketing
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Email Marketing
  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
  • Webinars and Virtual Events
  • Podcasts
  • Influencer Marketing
  • Video Marketing
  • Account-Based Marketing (ABM)
  • Retargeting and Remarketing
  • Partnerships and Co-marketing
  • Community Building and Forums
  • Referral Marketing
  • Live Chat and Chatbots
  • Omnichannel Marketing

1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization (SEO) should be a foundational component of every B2B digital marketing strategy in 2024. Here’s why:

Importance of organic search visibility

  • 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine. SEO brings visibility when buyers search for products or information.
  • Ranking high in organic search results lends credibility and authority. SEO builds trust in a brand.
  • SEO delivers targeted, high-intent traffic to websites. Visitors from organic search convert better than other channels.

Strategies for optimizing content to rank high in search engine results

  • Conduct keyword research to identify high-volume, low-competition terms that match buyer intent.
  • Optimize pages and content for chosen keywords, including titles, headers, meta descriptions, image alt text, and body text.
  • Publish in-depth, high-quality content like blog posts, guides, and videos that answer search queries.
  • Structure content around topic clusters rather than one-off pieces to maximize opportunity.
  • Employ technical SEO best practices on-site, like site speed, structured data, crawlability, etc.

Emphasis on quality content that addresses user intent

  • Search algorithms favor pages that are helpful, relevant, and meet searcher intent.
  • Avoid keyword stuffing. Develop content around what the audience needs rather than rankings alone.
  • Regularly create, update, and promote content to maintain freshness and authority in the eyes of search engines.

2. Content Marketing

Content marketing entails creating and distributing valuable, relevant content to attract and engage a target audience. It’s one of the most effective B2B marketing strategies.

The role of content in building brand authority and trust

  • High-quality content demonstrates knowledge and expertise on topics that matter to prospects. This builds brand authority.
  • Content fills information needs during the purchase process, establishing the brand as a trusted resource.
  • Consistent publishing shows commitment to educating, not just selling to, an audience. This nurtures relationships over time.

Types of content: blogs, whitepapers, case studies, and infographics

  • Blogs – Regular blog posts like “B2B eCommerce trends” are a versatile content type. They can address industry trends, company updates, “how to” advice, and thought leadership.
  • Whitepapers – Long-form, authoritative guides on complex topics. They attract and educate prospects during the research stages.
  • Case studies – Showcase client success stories powered by your product or service. Build social proof.
  • Infographics – Visually engaging formats that distill complex information. Can be easily shared on social media.

Benefits of providing valuable and relevant information to the target audience

  • Increased website traffic from organic search and direct visits
  • Lead generation via gated content offers (e.g. downloads in exchange for contact info)
  • Audience development by nurturing relationships over an extended buyer’s journey
  • Brand awareness and thought leadership positioning
  • Higher conversion rates from better-informed, engaged prospects

3. Social Media Marketing

While social media is often associated with B2C marketing, it’s also a powerful channel for B2B brands.

Importance of LinkedIn for B2B networking and lead generation

  • LinkedIn is the #1 social platform for B2B, with an audience of 722+ million professionals.
  • Companies can establish branded LinkedIn pages and join relevant groups to connect with prospects.
  • Sponsored content and ads help drive traffic and leads. Users convert 2-3x more than other social platforms.

Utilization of other platforms for brand awareness and engagement

  • Twitter – Share relevant industry news, engage influencers, run targeted ads
  • Facebook – Build local communities and run ads targeted by job title or company
  • Instagram – Establish a brand presence with visual content

Strategies for targeted advertising and content distribution

  • Develop buyer personas and tailor content accordingly on each platform
  • Promote content using organic posting and paid social ads
  • Use targeting tools to reach specific job roles, companies, interests, and behaviors
  • Test different formats – video, images, live video, Stories – to determine what resonates best

4. Email Marketing

Email marketing remains an indispensable component of B2B digital strategies in 2024.

Effectiveness of email campaigns in nurturing leads and maintaining customer relationships

  • Ongoing email communications move prospects through the sales funnel by delivering tailored information and offers.
  • Personalized email content keeps customers engaged post-sale, improving retention and loyalty.
  • Email generates $42 in revenue for every $1 spent, the highest ROI of any digital marketing channel.

Best practices for crafting compelling email content and subject lines

  • Segment lists based on demographics, interests, and engagement to personalize content.
  • Use dynamic subject lines tailored to different segments for higher open rates.
  • Make content scannable and action-oriented with headlines, subheads, bullets, etc.
  • Test different formats like text-based emails, HTML emails, and interactive content.

Automation tools and segmentation for personalized messaging

  • Marketing automation software centralizes list management, automates multi-touch campaigns, and tracks engagement.
  • Integrate analytics for data-driven insights on emails that resonate best with each audience.
  • Use behavioral data and lead scoring to route prospects to appropriate nurture tracks.

5. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising delivers instant results by putting your brand in front of active searchers.

Overview of PPC and its benefits for immediate visibility

  • Search engine marketing platforms like Google Ads let you bid on keywords so your ads appear at the top of results pages.
  • You pay only when users click your ad, hence the “pay per click” model.
  • PPC helps capture traffic from high-intent searches where organic rankings are undeveloped.

Platforms: Google Ads, LinkedIn Ads, and other search engines

  • Google Ads – the largest PPC platform with extensive targeting options
  • LinkedIn Ads – ideal for reaching professional B2B audiences
  • Bing Ads – alternative to reach Microsoft-centric businesses
  • Industry-specific engines – Target niche audiences on platforms like Wpromote

Tips for keyword research and ad copy optimization

  • Research buyer keywords and leverage negative match types for broad reach.
  • A/B tests different ad copies against each other. Strong CTAs and emotional hooks work well.
  • Use page-level URL targeting to serve ads to specific website pages.

6. Webinars and Virtual Events

Webinars are one of the top lead generation and engagement tactics for B2B marketers today.

Benefits of hosting webinars to educate and engage prospects

  • Webinars establish thought leadership on topics prospects care about.
  • They allow for real-time interaction via live chat and Q&As.
  • Prospects convert at 4x higher rates from webinars compared to other content.

Types of webinars: product demos, industry insights, and training sessions

  • Product demos showcase features and how they solve business needs.
  • Industry insight webinars position your team as subject matter experts.
  • Training webinars demonstrate how to use your product most effectively.

Strategies for promoting and maximizing attendance

  • Promote across channels: email, social media, paid ads, PR, etc.
  • Offer exclusive incentives for registrants, like discounts or free tools.
  • Share recordings as gated offers to gather leads from those who missed live airing.

7. Podcasts

Podcasting opens new doors for B2B brand building thanks to the format’s growth and loyal audiences.

Growing popularity of podcasts as a marketing channel

  • There are over 2 million active podcasts and over 100 million listeners.
  • Business podcasts can deepen engagement in a specific industry or niche.
  • Podcast ads generate 2-3x higher recall compared to traditional radio ads.

Content ideas: industry trends, expert interviews, and case studies

  • Interview industry experts, clients, or partners for insider perspectives.
  • Discuss trending topics, best practices, and news stories in a talk radio style.
  • Feature case studies and client success stories.

Tips for starting and promoting a podcast

  • Choose a compelling, searchable title and description.
  • Book guests in advance and record episodes in batches.
  • Repurpose audio into shareable video clips for YouTube and social media.
  • Promote across all marketing channels and on podcast directories.

8. Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing leverages recognizable industry figures to boost brand awareness and trust.

Leveraging industry influencers to build credibility and reach

  • Influencers have established credibility in their niche. Audiences value their opinions and recommendations.
  • They have large organic social followings built on expertise and content. This expands a brand’s reach.
  • Even nano-influencers with just 5,000 engaged followers can be powerful partners.

Identifying and collaborating with relevant influencers

  • Use tools like BuzzSumo, Followerwonk, and SocialBlade to find influencers.
  • Vet influencers based on audience match, content quality, and engagement levels.
  • Compensate influencers with free products, affiliate commissions, or pay them for content.

Measuring the ROI of influencer campaigns

  • Use unique landing pages, promo codes, and UTM parameters to track sales driven by influencers.
  • Measure the increase in traffic, followers, social shares, and awareness post-campaign.
  • Assess long-term metrics like brand sentiment and search rankings uplift.

9. Video Marketing

Video is engaging, emotional, and memorable – exactly what B2B marketing needs.

Power of video content in engaging and educating the audience

  • Viewers retain 95% of a message when delivered in a video compared to 10% when reading text.
  • Videos boost brand awareness and identity. Companies that use video enjoy 41% more web traffic.
  • Videos can convey complex product information in an accessible manner.

Types of videos: explainer videos, customer testimonials, and product reviews

  • Explainer videos demonstrate how a product works and its key differentiators in a simple animated style.
  • Testimonials showcase client success stories in a compelling, authentic way.
  • Reviews build trust by offering end-user perspectives on products.

Platforms for video distribution: YouTube, LinkedIn, and company websites

  • YouTube – Use both organic posting and TrueView video ads to reach broad audiences.
  • LinkedIn – Upload natively to build engagement among professional audiences.
  • Company websites – Embed videos on key landing pages to educate prospects.

10. Account-Based Marketing (ABM)

Account-based marketing (ABM) entails personalized campaigns focused on high-value target accounts.

Definition and explanation of account-based marketing

  • ABM concentrates sales and marketing efforts on converting and retaining a defined list of target accounts.
  • It aligns sales and marketing around the same goals using personalized, multi-touch outreach.
  • Tactics may include personalized emails, ads, direct mail, phone calls, and in-person events.

Benefits of account-based marketing for B2B businesses

  • Increased win rates by focusing efforts on high-potential targets instead of scattershot efforts.
  • Alignment between sales and marketing teams improves communication and strategy.
  • Personalization allows brands to address the unique needs and challenges of each target account.
  • Buyer-centric, tailored messages resonate more than one-size-fits-all content.

Examples of successful account-based marketing strategies

  • Develop targeted display ads and nurture tracks specific to each company and its needs.
  • Conduct research on accounts to identify key decision-makers and influence stakeholders.
  • Produce custom content like case studies showcasing how you solved challenges for similar businesses.
  • Host exclusive invitational events to build stronger executive relationships.

11. Retargeting and Remarketing

Retargeting and remarketing help brands re-engage past visitors and prospects who have shown interest.

Definition of retargeting and remarketing

  • Retargeting and remarketing both involve serving ads to users who previously took an action, such as visiting your website. The terms are interchangeable.
  • Cookies are placed on a user’s browser after they leave your site. When the cookie is detected again, ads are shown to draw them back.

Benefits of retargeting and remarketing for B2B

  • Keep your brand visible even after prospects leave your website without converting.
  • Encourages site visitors to return and move further through the sales funnel.
  • Allows you to tailor messaging based on pages viewed on your site.
  • Works across channels including search, social media, native ads, and display networks.

Best practices for successful remarketing campaigns

  • Use segmentation to serve different ad messages based on prospect activity and preferences.
  • Maintain a nurturing cadence of 6-8 soft touches over 2-3 months for optimal results.
  • Track conversions to identify the optimal duration and frequency for remarketing to your audience.
  • Sync remarketing with listed demographics, job roles, and company information for greater precision.

12. Partnerships and Co-Marketing

Partnering with complementary brands expands the reach and resources for B2B marketing.

Benefits of partnerships and co-marketing for lead generation

  • Partnerships increase brand awareness by accessing each other’s audiences.
  • Co-marketing campaigns leverage combined budgets and content libraries.
  • Joint educational offers like co-branded ebooks generate leads for both partners.
  • Collaboration lends credibility, especially when partnering with recognized market leaders.

Examples of effective co-marketing and partnership activities

  • Co-host a webinar combining each company’s subject matter experts.
  • Conduct joint PR outreach around news announcements or data releases.
  • Swap blog posts or podcast interviews showcasing different perspectives.
  • Sponsor or exhibit at the same industry events to maximize exposure.
  • Offer bundled or integrated solutions that close capability gaps.

13. Community Building and Forums

Online forums and communities create space for peer knowledge sharing while also building brand visibility and affinity.

Benefits of building online communities for B2B brands

  • Users share feedback, feature requests, use cases, and thoughts. This fuels product development and content strategy.
  • Peer-to-peer troubleshooting reduces customer support burdens while increasing satisfaction.
  • Facilitates brand advocacy as satisfied members organically praise solutions.
  • Forums expand the organic reach, and SEO as new discussions continually get indexed.

Examples of effective online community platforms

  • LinkedIn Groups – Engage industry professionals in topic-specific discussions.
  • Slack – An instant messaging platform popular with developers and tech communities.
  • Reddit – Start a “subreddit” for users interested in your niche or product.
  • Facebook Groups – Ideal for localized or enthusiast communities.
  • Online forums – Standalone forums like Discourse offer robust community-building features.

14. Referral Marketing

Referral marketing drives growth through positive word-of-mouth and incentives to recommend brands to others.

Definition and explanation of referral marketing

  • Referral marketing encourages existing customers to share your brand with friends, colleagues, and partners.
  • By word-of-mouth advocacy from trusted sources, it provides peer validation of your product’s value.
  • Referral incentives like discounts or free products motivate sharing. But authentic enthusiasm is most powerful.

Benefits of referral marketing for B2B brands

  • Cost-effective – Leverages existing customers for lead generation vs. paid media spend.
  • High conversion rates – Referral leads close at 10x the rate of other leads on average.
  • Fosters loyalty – Letting customers share and advocate for your brand improves satisfaction and retention.
  • Attracts quality leads – Referred prospects are often a better fit given the trusted source.

Examples of successful B2B referral program strategies

  • Create shareable landing pages and assets to make it easy for customers to refer others.
  • Send regular reminder emails asking happy customers to share your brand. Time these around events or news.
  • Structure referral incentives around milestones like multiple successful referrals. This encourages ongoing participation.
  • Use gamification by displaying a leaderboard of top referrers. People enjoy the competition.

15. Live Chat and Chatbots

Live chat and chatbots provide real-time support and sales assistance for faster conversions.

Benefits of live chat and chatbots

  • Immediately answer prospects’ questions at their moment of interest rather than making them seek info.
  • The route leads to appropriate agents or pages based on keywords and intent identified in chat conversations.
  • Qualify leads through customizable chatbots that engage visitors 24/7.
  • Improve customer service and reduce case volume with always-on self-service options.

Best practices for implementing live chat and chatbots

  • Place highly visible chat buttons across key pages like the homepage, product pages, and blog.
  • Use chatbots for quick, common questions and live agents for complex matters requiring human nuance.
  • Set up automated triggers based on visitor behavior, like exiting a page or spending over X seconds on site.
  • Integrate analytics to identify common questions and conversion barriers that chat should address.

16. Omnichannel Marketing

Omnichannel marketing weaves together a seamless brand experience across each touchpoint and channel.

Importance of omnichannel marketing

  • Buyers engage with brands across many different channels, from search to social media to direct sales interactions.
  • Omnichannel ensures customized but consistent messaging and experiences across each channel and touchpoint.
  • This prevents prospects from feeling out of sync when research moves from digital to interpersonal, for instance.

Examples of effective omnichannel marketing strategies

  • Share the same thought leadership content and visual assets across channels to reinforce positioning.
  • Track prospect interactions to identify companies showing research momentum for account-based sales follow-up.
  • Arm sales reps with prospect research gathered from digital analytics to personalize calls and emails.
  • Maintain unified brand presentation across channels, with matching logos, colors, and messaging.

Integrating and Optimizing B2B Marketing Channels

An effective B2B marketing strategy combines multiple channels to achieve visibility, engagement, and conversions at each stage of the funnel. Performance should be continually monitored and optimized.

Measuring and Analyzing Channel Performance

  • Establish KPIs for outreach channels like platform-specific engagement metrics, lead quality, and cost per conversion.
  • Set up thorough tagging and UTM parameters to track prospect traffic and behavior across channels.
  • Use multivariate testing to identify high-performing channel combinations at each buyer’s journey stage.

Allocating Resources Based On ROI

  • Assess marketing attribution to understand each channel or campaign’s influence on pipeline contribution.
  • Redirect budgets away from consistently low-performing efforts towards initiatives that drive more deals.
  • Balance upper-funnel awareness tactics with lower-funnel conversion channels for sufficient coverage.

Adapting to Changing Market Trends and Customer Preferences

  • Conduct surveys, interviews, and focus groups to learn how buyers’ preferences and practices are shifting.
  • Test innovative formats like podcasts or interactive content when emerging channels gain traction.
  • Continually expand and refine audiences for channels as new segments and buyer needs develop.

Final Thoughts

The most successful B2B marketers understand that an integrated, multi-channel B2B eCommerce marketing channels strategy is essential for reaching and converting today’s business buyers. By carefully selecting the right mix of B2B marketing channels, delivering valuable content and experiences, and continually optimizing based on data-driven insights, B2B brands can attract, nurture, and retain high-quality customers. Adopting this holistic, customer-centric approach is the key to driving sustainable growth in a competitive marketplace.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most important marketing channels for B2B companies?

Key B2B marketing channels include content marketing for expertise and SEO, email for nurturing leads, paid search for active prospects, LinkedIn for brand and ads, and webinars/events for education and leads.

How do you choose the right marketing channels?

Choose channels by mapping to buyer journey stages: awareness (social media, content, SEM, events), consideration (SEO, nurturing emails, free tools), decision (demos, case studies, trials), retention (newsletters, client resources).

How should you combine B2B marketing channels?

Combine channels with unified messaging, streamlined conversions, cross-promotion, CRM automation, and data-driven optimization for seamless prospect engagement.

How do you measure B2B marketing channel performance?

Measure channel performance with KPIs like traffic, engagement (CTR, time on site), lead metrics (generation, cost), MQLs, SQLs, and pipeline contribution using UTM, CRM, analytics, and attribution.

How often should you evaluate your channel mix?

For most B2B companies, marketing channels should be evaluated on a quarterly basis. However, high-growth companies may need to reassess every 1-2 months to adapt to rapidly evolving buyer behaviors.