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Digital Marketing Investment: The Underlying Message in Numbers 

In 2021, that figure was only 58%. In 2022, it climbed to 65%. We’ve gone from just over half of businesses investing in digital marketing, to almost 3 out of 4 businesses, in the space of only two years.

According to a 2023 study by Gartner, 72% of businesses globally allocate budget to digital marketing channels.  

There’s no doubt that digital marketing has become a necessity for marketplace survival in the post-pandemic era. 

But simply showing up to the prom doesn’t guarantee you’ll get to dance. 

The question isn’t whether or not a business should invest in digital – that ship has sailed. 

The real question involves establishing the right type of digital marketing to invest in. 

To answer that question, we can look at how effective each digital channel is based on responses from real businesses who use them. 

In our recent industry survey, which led to the release of our Insight 2024: The State of Digital Report, we found that a strategy focusing on social media, SEO, and a strong website presence might be most beneficial – while not discounting the role of email and content marketing. 

Which channels are most effective? 

Lower-perceived channels like PPC, influencer marketing, online PR, and affiliate marketing may require a more nuanced approach or could depend on specific industry or business contexts to yield better effectiveness. 

marketing channels

B2B vs. B2C Channel Effectiveness 

More insights occur when we correlate digital channel effectiveness across business size and B2B and B2C categories. 

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) emerges as a pivotal channel across various business types and sizes, underscoring the critical role of organic search visibility in achieving business objectives.  

Consistent performance of SEO indicates that businesses investing in this area are likely to experience enhanced visibility and, consequently, a positive impact on their goals. 

marketing channels

Insight 2024: The State of Digital Report

Social Media Marketing 

In the realm of B2C businesses and larger enterprises, Social Media Marketing exhibits an outstanding effectiveness rate of 86.11%.  

This underscores the growing importance of platforms centered around social interaction for actively engaging with consumers and solidifying a strong brand presence.  

Social media’s unparalleled ability to reach a wide audience and facilitate personalised communication positions it as an indispensable tool in contemporary marketing strategies. 


At the core of a digital presence, Websites play a pivotal role across the business spectrum.  

Well-designed websites, in particular, wield substantial influence, serving as the digital facade of a company, with larger firms reaping notable benefits.  

The connection between website effectiveness and company size is likely linked to the ample resources that larger enterprises can allocate to create and maintain a superior online experience. 

Email Marketing 

Email Marketing remains a cornerstone for nurturing customer relationships and driving sales, with its effectiveness more pronounced among mid-sized to larger businesses.  

The enduring presence of this channel in the digital marketing mix attests to its targeted and personalised approach, capable of yielding substantial returns when executed effectively. 

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising 

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising maintains its position in marketing strategies, particularly among businesses with larger revenues.  

The value of PPC lies in its ability for precise targeting and delivering rapid results, rendering it an attractive option for companies seeking to swiftly capture market attention. 

Content Marketing 

Content Marketing stands out as an essential component universally recognised across all business types for its role in engaging and educating audiences.  

The sustained significance of content marketing emphasises a truth in the digital space: content is still king. 

Influencer Marketing 

Mid-sized businesses with revenues ranging from R100M to R499.9M have discovered a powerful ally in Influencer Marketing.  

This form of marketing has the potential to amplify a brand’s message and authentically resonate with target audiences, particularly when strategically aligned with the right personalities. 

“The findings articulate the imperative for companies to diversify their digital marketing tactics and adapt them to the size and requirements of their operations.”Insight 2024 

Discover the trends shaping digital in 2024 

Conducted in collaboration with the Digital Marketing Conference, our 16-question survey on the current state of digital provides valuable insights into prevailing marketing strategies and industry trends.  

The Insight 2024: The State of Digital Report offers expert insights from digital marketing professionals and analysts, a comprehensive analysis of key trends derived from survey data and expert articles, and strategic guidance to inform smart decision-making. 

We delve into critical questions that touch on what’s currently effective in digital marketing, how to authentically embody customer-centricity, effective data utilisation, and the impact of various digital channels. 

Insight 2024 also looks at budgeting strategies, the importance of adaptability and innovation in the face of economic volatility.  

It unpacks the role of marketing technology (including analytics, CRM, and automation), the transformative power of generative AI, and consumer insights on messaging, user-friendly interfaces, and the influence of platforms like TikTok. 

Insight 2024: The State of Digital Report


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