8 common budgetting mistakes in B2B marketing

B2B marketing is the engine behind growth at many modern companies. This creates new expectations about the role of modern marketers. He or she must be able to justify in great detail why investments are made and what the returns are. How do you do this? And what mistakes should you avoid? In this blog we delve into the common mistakes we encounter in B2B marketing budgets.


1.Budgetting without measurable targets

Marketing is not a nice-to-have. It is an investment in growth. Whether it is brand awareness, lead numbers or direct sales. In all cases, this projected growth must be tangible and measurable before you start budgeting. Set clear objectives so that you can objectively say “this was a good investment”.

For this, you start at the end. How much revenue growth do you want to achieve? And how much revenue does an average customer generate? From here, count backward to the number of customers, appointments, leads and website visitors you need to achieve your growth targets. Base these numbers on your current and historical data and conversions rates.


2. Unrealistic budgetting

Do you want to double next year’s growth with the same marketing budget? Of course, in all digital campaigns there are opportunities for optimization, but don’t overdo it. All digital channels and all industries generate benchmark figures that place your marketing performance in a broader perspective. Ambition is of course always to good, just don’t expect that all of your KPIs will suddenly outperform common benchmarks.

Commonly used digital marketing channels in B2B (Demand Gen Report 2018)


3. Too much dependence on a single channel

Many B2B marketers have enormous successes with advertising via, for example, LinkedIn or Google. The logical tendency is then to scale up; invest everything in one or two channels that really “work”. But stay careful with this. Never budget around a very limited number of channels, because if costs suddenly rise or results are disappointing, you can go back to the drawing board.


4. ‘Because competitors do it’

It is tempting to copy the behavior of a successful competitor and to invest in the same media or events. But be aware. How does this affect the uniqueness of your brand? Are there other factors that explain the success of your competitor, such as a longer history?

Do not rely blindly on the behavior of competitors. There are plenty of examples of companies that nobody thought would ever fail. Yet they are no longer in business because they held on to old patterns for too long.


5. Trust on past assumptions

“We’ve been advertising in this magazine for ten years, and look at how successful we are.” Unfortunately, there are still many marketers who get stuck in familiar habits. This does not have to be a problem if you can prove that it is profitable. But avoid developing a blind spot for fixed patterns.

Also don’t just rely on past results from activities that have been idle for a long time. For example, the investment it took to rank high in search engines five years ago, is now radically different due to changes to the algorithms.


6. Do everything in house

A marketing team is important for the growth of an organization. Marketers are constantly discovering new opportunities to sell products or services even better. With these insights, they work on campaigns that generate maximum returns.

This is a huge responsibility. Add to that the huge number of marketing channels and the rapid changing marketing landscape and you will notice that there is a lot of responsibility on the shoulders of one team.

Smart marketing directors carefully decide which activities they organize in-house and which tasks they outsource. Because in our rapid changing market, the biggest scarcity is often not money, but time. All the time it takes for your team to “reinvent the wheel” or update their knowledge, gives competitors the chance to take a lead.


7. Freezing your budget per channel or period

A fixed marketing budget per month or channel is clear and easy to manage. But is it the way to success? Many marketers stop a campaign as soon as the determined advertising budget has been spent or an objective has been achieved. This is a missed opportunity. If a campaign is successful and cost-effective, you should really just continue going on. Do make sure that you have the internal capacity to handle a sudden peak in leads. Otherwise, all costs and effort will still be lost.


8. Only invest in measurable marketing

Measurability is the power of modern marketing. Yet we also want to make a case for the non-measurable or less measurable channels. Marketing classics such as a billboard along a highway, radio and commercials on television still prove their usefulness every day.

There is also room for creative channels in B2B marketing


All of your competitors have also discovered online marketing. This makes it more difficult to stand out online. Conversely, the demand for, and price of, traditional media is declining. A creative “joke” with viral potential has suddenly become very accessible. Keep challenging yourself and also dare to invest in a channel that is at odds with all your modern need for measurability.


Budgeting for B2B marketing is not easy these days. Increasingly, marketers are expected to not only present what they are going to spend, but what they are going to deliver. This is largely justified because measurability is the new benchmark in marketing. Don’t let this deter you. Work backward from your growth objectives, spread your investments across multiple channels and stay flexible with your team capacity. That way your budget also becomes the basis for predictable growth.