Marketers need an all-round view of current trends and developments in marketing in order to be able to adapt their strategies to today’s needs in the best possible way. New marketing statistics are an important tool for this. They provide insights into the status quo and the development of the marketing industry. In the “Report for Marketing Statistics 2022″ by HubSpot and Venngage, marketing managers receive a comprehensive overview of the current state of the industry. We have summarized the most important findings for you in this article.
Data basis of the study “Report for Marketing Statistics 2022″.
In the “Report for Marketing Statistics 2022” HubSpot and Venngage used data from over 103,000 HubSpot customers between February 2020 and December 2021 for their industry analysis. For the report, the researchers looked at companies’ ad spend, website traffic trends, end-customer conversation development, and consumer contact trends. In addition, HubSpot and Venngage surveyed more than 200 marketing professionals on existing and future concepts in content marketing. The companies surveyed were divided into three sizes: Small companies with less than 25 employees, medium-sized companies with 25 to 200 employees, and large companies with more than 200 employees.
Overview: Key figures of the Marketing Statistics 2022
In the four categories considered, “ad spend,” “website traffic,” “conversations” and “contact growth,” the study managers compared the development in the period from February 2020 to December 2021 with the data from January 2020, which was used as a benchmark. In some cases, the various areas showed significantly different development – not least depending on the size of the company and the region in which it is located. In the following, we provide a brief overview of the key findings.
Advertising spend and website traffic show the strongest growth
The Corona pandemic has left its mark on almost all the categories examined. In the first five months of the period under review, companies recorded a drop of up to 13 percentage points in advertising spend, in some cases a sharp drop – in parallel with the start of the pandemic. This means that advertising spending was initially reduced significantly before the marketing industry picked up speed again. Overall, however, the bottom line is that advertising spending has increased significantly, by 81 percentage points compared to January 2020.
With the Corona pandemic, the importance of websites has grown significantly. The study shows a significant increase in website traffic of 63 percentage points over the period considered relative to the benchmark. In parallel with contact restrictions and retail closures, website traffic increased steadily over the period considered. The strongest growth was recorded by the companies’ websites in November 2021, i.e. during the peak season in (online) retail. Here, website traffic was 72 percentage points above the benchmark of January 2020.
Conversations less affected by pandemic than contact growth
While ad spend and website traffic have been significantly impacted by the pandemic, this has not been the same for the Conversations category. The trend remained positive across almost all months, even if the increases were moderate. There was no significant slump, such as in advertising spending. Overall, however, between February 2020 and December 2021, Conversations increased by “only” 46 percentage points compared to January 2020, significantly less than ad spend or website traffic.
While conversations were less affected by the pandemic, new customer growth (contact growth), on the other hand, suffered significantly. In 2020 in particular, development was negatively impacted by the lockdowns. In May and June, for example, new customer acquisition slumped by 14 percentage points in both cases. Contact growth only recovered in the course of 2021, but overall new customer acquisition was the worst performer: Compared with the January 2020 benchmark, companies increased contact growth by only 25 percentage points.
Regional differences and strong influence of company size
The results above show that the Corona pandemic has had very different effects on the various marketing areas of companies. However, regional differences and company size have no less of an influence, which HubSpot and Venngage therefore examined separately. The study team looked at the Asia-Pacific region, the EAM region, Latin America and North America. They also distinguished between small, medium-sized and large companies based on the number of employees.
Negative development due to the pandemic, especially in Latin and North America
In a comparison of regions, the overall poor development of the three categories “Website Traffic,” “Conversations,” and “Contact Growth” stands out. In contrast to the EAM and APAC regions, Latin and North America recorded the most serious declines in marketing activities in these areas and only a very slow recovery. In Latin America, contact with new customers actually declined significantly overall – by six percentage points. In addition, companies in Latin America were below the general trend when it came to conversations: they increased by 20 percentage points less than conversations across all companies.
By contrast, the picture is different when looking at the APAC and EAM regions. Companies in these regions were the shortest under the benchmarks for contact growth, conversation and website traffic. In addition, the recovery was significantly stronger. Growth in all three categories was consistently above average in both regions.
What is Website-Traffic?
Website traffic refers to the number of users who visit and use the website within a certain period of time. It is an important criterion of website analysis and provides data about the users. In addition, there are many other criteria and KPIs of a website analysis.
Medium-sized companies with slow but steady improvement
When comparing the performance of ad spend, website traffic, conversations and contact growth, it becomes apparent that small and medium-sized companies in particular tend to perform better than large companies with more than 200 employees. Small companies are well above average, particularly in terms of ad spending and website traffic development, while medium-sized companies with 26 to 200 employees were least likely to fall below the benchmarks in the study over the period under review. Medium-sized companies thus show only average growth overall, but continuous growth over the period – despite the challenges posed by the Corona crisis. By contrast, the pandemic had a significantly greater impact on large companies, some of which recorded significantly lower average growth in the individual marketing areas. One reason for this could be that large companies need a longer lead time to adapt marketing strategies to new circumstances. This applies, for example, to the greater integration of visual content in content marketing, which the study’s authors address separately.
Visual content continues to grow in importance
The study survey data confirms the important role of visual content during the Corona pandemic. Nearly 60 percent of the companies surveyed changed their content marketing strategy for visual content in 2020 as a result of the pandemic and relied on it significantly more than before. In 2022, around two-thirds of companies also plan to (further) rely more heavily on visual content – such as infographics, diagrams, videos and photos.
The Corona pandemic has had a considerable impact on the marketing activities of some companies. Contact with new customers in particular was more difficult, but has picked up again over the last two years. The importance of websites has grown enormously, as evidenced by the generally strong increase in website traffic. Companies have learned from this and adapted content strategies to better reach customers online. In addition, after budget cuts at the beginning of the pandemic, ad spend has gradually recovered and continues to increase. The result: the pandemic has shown that marketing teams not only overcome crises with strategy adjustments, but also position themselves properly for the future.