11 Oct Content Marketing Takes Off but Challenges Remain
Earlier this month, MarketingProfs and the Content Marketing Institute issued their annual Content Marketing Report, which shows the significant impact this type of marketing is having on businesses. In particular, B2B marketers are continuing to embrace content marketing (about 93% of marketers make use of this tactic) and are growing more sophisticated in its execution. In fact, 42% of B2B marketers claim to be effective at content marketing (up 17% from 36% last year).
As sophistication grows, significant resources are being dedicated to content marketing. On average:
- 42% of marketers have a documented content strategy
- 73% have a person who is primarily responsible for content marketing
- Marketers use 13 different content tactics and spend about 30% of their overall budget on content marketing
The output is increasing as well. More than 70% of marketers claim to be producing more content this year than last (with 32% producing significantly more content). Not surprisingly, those with a documented strategy are seeing the biggest change in terms of content volume.
One big change in this year’s report is the growing use of infographics; more than half of all marketers surveyed are using infographics as part of their marketing mix (up 34% to 51% in 2014). However, infographics have not yet broken into the top five most popular tactics, which are:
- Social media (not including blogs): 87%
- Website articles: 81%
- E-newsletters: 80%
- Blogs: 76%
- In person events: 76%
However, there seems to be some disagreement as to what the most effective tactic might be. For the fourth year in a row, many marketers say that in-person events are by far the most effective tactic. But, many best-in-class marketers disagree, putting their money on blogs as their most effective tactic.
Though many marketers question the effectiveness of social media, they continue to invest time and money into this tactic. In many cases, marketers are adding social media platforms to their mix. This year, Google +, SlideShare and Instagram saw big gains.
In any case, marketers across the board are counting on content marketing to fill the top of the sales funnel, and are paying close attention to analytics to help them gauge the effectiveness of their efforts. According to the report, the most popular content metrics are increased Web traffic and lead quality.
Still, despite the increased attention and budget allocated to content marketing, marketers still list some significant challenges that are causing them pain points, including:
- Lack of time (69%)
- Ability to produce enough content (55%)
- Ability to produce engaging content (47%)
And while we’re on the subject of content marketing, take a look at our brand new starter guide to “Do It Yourself Media Relations.” If you have limited resources, but are interested in promoting your company’s expertise, this is the guide for you.
– Katie Hanusik