Powering Your Marketing Engine

Leveraging an Agency to Get Measurably Better Media Advertising

December 31, 2022   Posted By Laura Schreiber

Do you know how to win at B2B media advertising? Take the quiz! 

Typically, industry trade magazines are a key marketing channel for B2B companies. While we rarely support running print ads, we find that digital ads in magazine emails, newsletters, and on media websites are critical to reaching B2B markets.  

Choosing to manage your B2B media advertising in-house may seem like an effective strategy. After all, media partners publish circulation numbers, editorial calendars, and ad costs. So, it would seem pretty straightforward to identify the best industry trade magazines, websites, and programs for advertising rather than retaining a B2B advertising agency, correct? Not always.  

Here’s a quiz to test your knowledge of B2B media advertising.  

1. True or false? Publisher websites give you all the information you need to make a decision about advertising. 

2. Which of the following is the best call to action (CTA) for an ad? 

      a) Contact us

      b) Download your guide

      c) See our products here

3. What should be your goal for advertising?  

      a) Lead generation 
      b) Thought leadership 
      c) Institutional awareness 

4. What additional benefits can you get from a publication sales rep? 

      a) Value-added advertising 
      b) Editorial opportunities 
      c) Discounts if you are buying ads from sister publications 

5. True or false? At a cost of $12,000, webinars don’t pay off.

6. True or false? An excellent topic for B2B marketing webinars is a new product and its features. 

B2B media advertising

True or False? Publisher Websites Give You All the Information You Need to Make a Decision about Advertising. 

Answer: False 

Let’s burst this bubble right away. Any publication will proudly boast about its circulation, web traffic, and the titles of its readers. Unfortunately, many of these numbers can be legacy numbers or inflated numbers, such as magazines handed out at a trade show.  

However, publisher media kits don’t publish the statistics that marketers really want to see. We want to know, if we run this ad, how many people will click on it and how many leads will we get.  

Even better. Chances are, a B2B agency already has this information ready for you. Not only may an established agency have been working in the industry (30 years for Goldstein Group Communications), but it may have experience running ads for similar B2B engineering and manufacturing clients. The agency may have leverage with the sales reps because its advertising buyer purchases for multiple clients, and the buyer may know from prior experience which ad products work and which waste your budget.  

Most important, agency media specialists know how to ask the right questions and uncover the stats that are truly important. For example, in researching magazine partners for a recent webinar, we sent a spreadsheet requesting 30 points of information to several magazine sales reps. We were able to forecast the cost per impression, costs per click, and costs per lead in an apples-to-apples comparison.  

Which of the Following Is the Best Call to Action (CTA) for an Ad—“Contact Us,” “Download Your Guide,” or “See Our Products Here”? 

Answer: Download our guide.  

It would be great if you could place an ad explaining why your company’s products are so great with a CTA leading directly to a “request a quote” form. Unfortunately, media advertising doesn’t work that way. Probably, prospects seeing your ad aren’t at the stage where they’re ready to talk to a salesperson or request a quote.  

Instead, we recommend ads that offer information that will help prospects in the discovery phase of the buying process: handbooks, guides, and webinars. These are gated TOFU (Top of Funnel) items, meaning visitors will need to enter their contact information to get them. Then marketers can enroll those contacts in an email nurture campaign.  

Another benefit of gated content? You see the real numbers of engagement with your advertising and the ROI of each ad.  

Even better. A professional advertising buyer at a B2B agency will design ad programs to get the ROI stats and leads that clients want. At Goldstein Group, we analyzed historical data across many B2B clients to establish clear goals for advertising results, and then we tweak the programs that are underperforming. As an added bonus, we compile all the advertising stats, so clients get one dashboard of all the numbers to review.  

Here are Goldstein Group’s benchmarks for B2B media advertising based on our historical data. Results vary based on the target market, but the benchmarks give us a solid reference point. 

  • Cost per lead - $34 
  • Cost per click - $17 
  • Cost per impression - $0.10

 B2B advertising agency

What Should Be Your Goal for Advertising—Lead Generation, Thought Leadership, or Institutional Awareness? 

Answer: Any of the above.  

Ok, this was a trick question. Your advertising goals change based on different business goals, available assets, and other objectives. 

For example, one of our clients wanted to announce an acquisition. We created ads around the news with a link to the press release that explained how current and future customers would benefit. When, instead, a client wanted to raise awareness as a thought leader, we recommended sponsored articles bylined by their executive.  

Even better. Do you know your goals? Great! Let GGC create the advertising plan that will help get you there. We’ll select proven advertising programs and the right channels to help you achieve your goals. 

What Additional Benefits Can You Get from a Publication Sales Rep… Value-Added Advertising, Editorial Opportunities, or Discounts for Buying Ads in Sister Publications?  

Answer: All of these!  

Spending a significant budget with one publisher may lead to discounts and value-added advertising opportunities such as free digital banner ads, catalog listings, newsletter ads, and more. This free advertising enhances your advertising ROI. Once you’ve built a relationship with a publisher, it might also open the door for editorial opportunities.  

Even better. We’ve worked with many publishers and media sales reps for a long time. These relationships help us get the most value from a limited advertising budget. We can also quietly leverage our advertising spend to get attention from editors when we pitch story ideas. Because of the trust we have built over time, reps and editors sometimes contact us looking for content, articles, and expert interviews.  

True or False? At a Cost of $10,000-$15,000, Webinars Don’t Pay Off.  

Answer: False  

Ignore the sticker shock and hear us out. We suggest and even push webinars for a good reason—they work as a prime tool for both thought leadership as well as quality lead generation. In the B2B environment, prospects will gladly take 30-40 minutes of their time to learn about technologies essential to their jobs. Best of all, you can expect decision-makers, such as the engineers spec’ing new equipment, to be the ones attending the webinar.  

And what are you going to get for your investment? You can expect leads at about $25-50 each. Think about that. Would your sales staff pay $50 to get a highly interested party to attend a sales presentation for an hour? We think they would.  

And those are just the initial webinar leads. Don’t underestimate the number of times your webinar will be watched if you re-post it to your website, promote it on social media, turn it into a white paper, and more. Properly handled, webinars are one of the most effective forms of B2B digital marketing that we use.  

Even better. Let GGC do the work for you in finding the suitable webinar and creating the tutorial content for your prospective audience. Webinar slots can fill up months in advance, so it helps to have an experienced partner to identify which webinars will give you the best return on your investment. Then we’ll help you promote the webinar to ensure you get the largest and most qualified attendance possible. 

B2B webinars

B2B webinars are one of the best ways to get qualified leads

True or False? A Great Topic for B2B Marketing Webinars Is a New Product and Its Features. 

Answer: False 

You have a great new product. Everyone will be interested in knowing about it, right? Unfortunately, no. Probably, prospects will shrug at your webinar ad campaign. After all, if they want to know more about a product or service, they’ll do a Google search.  

Instead, marketers should develop a tutorial, problem-solution topic that helps your prospects do their jobs better. For one client, our webinar description promised to explain a new focus for OSHA on electrical safety. We had a hunch it was a hot topic, and it was. With 1,400 registrants, it was the best-attended webinar the publication had ever done. Another webinar that we created for a client covered best operational practices in its industry. It generated 230 leads at a low cost of $21 each.  

Even better. You’ll need a presentation for your webinar that will grab the audience’s attention so registrants stick around until the Q&A session at the end. We can create the presentation for you (often re-purposed from articles or blogs we’ve already written) or help you refine what your team creates. Also, we’ll go through practice runs to help with timing, presentation style, and tone.  

Finally, we’ll handle the promotions to drive registration, supplementing what the media partner does to create attendees. Yes, we are your writer, promoter, and coach all wrapped up into one resource.  

So, how did you do on our quiz?  

We hope this blog post convinces you that you get the most out of your advertising budget by taking advantage of a seasoned advertising buyer and planner, one that understands your message and audience and how to most economically get your content in front of them for the very best results. They can help you steer clear of pitfalls such as second-tier publishers, spending your money in ways that don’t get results, or not getting all the value-added opportunities you’re entitled to.  

Ready to learn more? Contact us to get started today.  

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