It could be another element to help break down some of the resistance swirling around b-to-b sales and marketing executives toward social media: a new report showing that pull marketing tactics, such as search, blogs and social-media tools, generate cheaper leads than more traditional outbound efforts.
The “2010 State of Inbound Marketing” report was conducted by HubSpot, which provides software for inbound online marketing (hat tip to eMarketer). It said that spending on lead generation is 60% less among companies that devote at least one-half of their budget to inbound marketing, compared with companies spending at least one-half of lead generation dollars on outbound tactics. The average cost per lead from inbound marketing was also significantly less.
More than two-fifths of companies using various social media marketing channels had acquired a customer from those channels, the report said. For b-to-b firms, LinkedIn was the most effective vehicle for customer acquisition.