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B2B by the Numbers: The Digitalization and Diversification of Marketing Channels

By: Nate Carter, Head of Agency Sales


B2B ad spending has bounced back strong since the pandemic, hitting $14.32 billion in 2022. Notably, eMarketer expects digital ads to account for nearly 50 percent of all B2B ad spending by 2024. Likewise, 2023 will mark the first year that more than half of digital B2B ads will be placed on mobile, representing the realization that today’s B2B buyers are no longer glued to their work desktops and laptops alone—nor are those the only environments in which B2B marketers can effectively reach them.

Commensurate with this rise in B2B digital advertising is a rise in the data investments to guide those ad spends.

In a recent eMarketer presentation on the "U.S. B2B marketing Data Spending Forecast 2023," Kelsey Voss noted that spending on third-party B2B marketing data will hit $3.91 billion by 2024. That said, how these investments are being made is in a state of flux when it comes to marketers looking to protect their investments and ensure they’re in compliance with emerging privacy laws.


As regulations increase, Voss noted, the appeal of basic contact list buying is declining. What marketers are really looking for are third-party sources that can improve the value of data. As the report noted, “Cross-functional collaboration is key so teams are aligned on these sources. For SMBs, an all-in-one third-party data solution may work best. For enterprise, a third-party source could provide intent signals for at-risk customers.”


Another reason good data is so important is that B2B marketers are acknowledging that marketing success requires a more-diverse channel mix, particularly as people’s personal and professional lives and schedules have merged in recent years. In 2023, the proportions of B2B marketers who said that social media and streaming TV were their most effective digital marketing channels for driving revenue were higher than ever. This makes sense, given the amount of time consumers are spending in these channels—and the fact that they’re not resistant to seeing work-related messaging even when they’re on their personal time.


Most effective digital marketing channels for driving revenues according to US B2B marketers 2021-2023


Overall, B2B marketers are spending more across channels, with the largest proportion of spending increases happening in social media, content marketing, and display advertising (thanks to platforms like LinkedIn). In terms of streaming TV, one out of three (34 percent) of B2B marketers say they’re increasing their spend in the channel in 2023, vs. only 12 percent who say they’re decreasing spend in this category.

Change in marketing spending according to US B2B Marketers, April 2023


According to Voss, the above shifts—the digitization and diversification of B2B ad spending, partnered with the blurring of personal and professional personas—are playing out in the top marketing tactics that today’s B2B marketers are embracing, namely:


  • Personalized content and offers
  • Customer loyalty programs
  • Virtual events and webinars


As B2B marketers get more savvy and diverse with their digital ad spends, smart data investments in third-party sources—ones that bridge the gap between personal and professional personas—will be more important than ever.

By employing audience data that can bridge the gap between the personal and professional attributes of audiences, marketers can unlock new opportunities and higher ROI from their digital advertising investments. Contact our team at for more information about Dun & Bradstreet and Eyeota audience solutions.