Well stop all the clocks! The company website is officially the number one marketing channel of choice for L&D professionals today according to the findings in our all new Marketing Spending Review for L&D report.

Yea, we get it. You kinda knew that already right? Well hold it right there fella. We don’t do these big complex research programmes just so we can point out the bleedin’ obvious (obviously).  What’s really interesting about the all-new top 10 most popular marketing tools in L&D chart isn’t what’s making the top 10. It’s what’s movin’ and shakin’ in the top 10. Here’s the skinny.

What’s in and what’s out?

Marketing Automation (like Marketo or Hubspot)
37% new
Sponsorship (of industry events, awards, initiatives, etc)
32%downarrow
Trade and business magazine advertising
16%downarrow
iPhone or Android apps
10% new

You have to look outside the top 10 to see what’s really changing.  Traditional high ranking marketing tactics like sponsorship or trade and business magazine advertising have been on a downward trajectory for some time, but now, with only 32% of L&D marketers listing sponsorship and just 16% listing trade & business advertising  as priority parts of their current mix, these classics look to have run their course.

The new entries set to enter the top 10 in the months to come look promising. We’ve spotted half a dozen or so fast movers racing up the chart this time around but the ones we’re really excited about are the rise of marketing automation and the adoption of the app in B2B marketing.

The L&D sector has traditionally been slow to adopt tech tools to support B2B marketing programmes but with 37% now saying that they use some form of marketing automation things look set to change.  Admittedly, when we drill down on this figure, it looks like the term “marketing automation” still remains unclear for some (email marketing platforms like ConstantContact or MailChimp were occasionally thought to be “marketing automation” platforms rather than systems like Act-on or Marketo) but even allowing for some degree of error, the rise of the marketing automation machine in L&D looks like a pretty safe bet from where we’re standing.

What’s movin’ and shakin’?

Inside the top 10 it’s really a matter of spotting the fast movers (Relax, we’ve made this super-easy by putting either one, two or three arrows next to each item in the chart).

SEO and content marketing collaterals (guides, downloads infographics, etc) are the two fastest growing priorities for B2B marketers in L&D right now according to our new report and tactics like Ad words (or other forms of PPC) have established themselves as major players in the marketing mix.

In the top three, the company website, social networks and eMail marketing all look safe in the space for the foreseeable future, although social marketing (via networks like G+, LinkedIn, Facebook or twitter) has become a greater priority than eMail for most marketers in L&D this time round (this may be because email marketing programmes are now established and working fairly effectively for many).

Further down the table in spots seven and eight, it’s worthwhile noting the pretty dramatic change that’s occurring in events marketing right now. The traditional big ticket events are giving way to smaller (often self run) micro events. These home run workshops, seminars, user groups or on-line communities have bulleted up our chart for two reasons we think: Firstly, the past few years of austerity have prompted marketers to focus on marketing activities they can run cheaply but effectively using resources they already have. Secondly, B2B marketers in L&D are starting to reap the benefits of investments made in the company website, which is now the marketing hub that powers lead nurturing programmes from most businesses.

1
Company website
98%uparrow
2
Social networks (like linkedIn or Facebook) and business networks (like TrainingZone or HRZone)
83%uparrow
3
eMail marketing (like eNewsletters)
79% downarrow
4
Marketing collaterals – like brochures or product sheets
63%downarrow
5
Search Engine Optimisation
58%uparrowuparrowuparrow
6
Debating collaterals – like White papers, eBooks, research papers or studies
57%uparrowuparrowuparrow
7
Major events
53%downarrowdownarrow
8
Smaller events (like networking seminars, focus groups or workshops)
52%uparrowuparrow
9
News collaterals – like case studies and press releases
51% uparrow
10
Online Advertising (like PPC or Adwords)
47% uparrowuparrow

The all new Marketing Spending Review for marketers in L&D is out now. Get more highlights in our infographic then download the full report to see what B2B marketers in L&D will be spending budget on over the next 18 months.

Want to see how we did it?

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