The pandemic, for knowledge workers, has been a steady diet of changes upending many familiar go-to-market activities. In-person networking — out. Event attendance, including booth building, travel and time away from the office — out. Face-to-face “in your city” sales calls — out. Speaking slots at any events not on Zoom — out.
Massive marketing budget shifts away from any of these activities were the rule in 2020 and are also true until at least in 2021’s Q3. Anecdotal evidence suggests conference promoters have responded by raising prices, calling to mind the lyrics, “When you ain’t got nothing, you got nothing to lose,” that Bob Dylan once sang.
Top Lead Generation Trends On The Upswing
So where have new business development budgets gone? The biggest beneficiaries appear to be other known go-to-market techniques that have returned results in the past. HubSpot reports —with data from more than 100,000 customers — show the following increases:
Sales development has been trending up dramatically in 2021. This can be viewed through two lenses — sales emails have now effectively doubled from the pre-pandemic baseline — 106% in March and 94% more email volume in April 2021.
Sales calls, too, trended up. Call events were up 72% and 65% in March and April 2021, respectively (compared to pre-pandemic baselines).
If it feels like prospecting has gotten harder than ever — the data indicates that it has.
Marketing email volumes are up by an average of about 32% monthly since March 2020. There is a massive amount of these typically blast-oriented branded HTML emails flooding inboxes.
After dropping precipitously in the months immediately following the onset of the pandemic, ad spend is starting to pick up since August 2020 — up 7% that month above pre-pandemic baselines. In 2021, we find spending up a staggering 38% in both March and April 2021. The year-over-year uptick is 52%.