This Chart Tells Us You’re Doing Content Marketing Wrong.

21 Apr This Chart Tells Us You’re Doing Content Marketing Wrong.

I stumbled across an article I felt our readers would find it interesting, since, as a PR agency we provide most of our clients with both PR and content marketing services. “PR is 80% More Effective Than Marketing” shares the results of a recent study that states: “content marketing is 88% less effective than public relations, due in large part to the outsize influence earned media wields over the public. According to the study, earned media – defined as content created by credible third party experts – consistently provided more benefit to brands than did user generated or branded content.”  


Without even diving in too deep, I think there are quite a few questions that need to be asked here. For instance, in this study, did they consider authored articles PR or content marketing? What about sponsored authored articles? How about a social campaign?

I think the separation of PR and content marketing is maybe not as obvious as this study suggests.  Here’s my issue with it – should there really be a winner in the PR vs. Content Marketing battle? Should they even be competing in the first place, or working hand in hand to produce results?  I think there is equally an effective place for both third-party articles and content created by a company for their potential buyers, but both need to coexist.

In fact, if the point of content marketing is to create credible content that your buyers find useful (whether the home for that content is your website or a publication sought out by your PR agency), then maybe the content used in this study wasn’t created correctly or it wasn’t being shown to the right audience.  Companies should only be creating marketing content that its buyers find useful and distributing it where their target audience is paying attention.

I’m glad this study was conducted, as it has given me the opportunity to reiterate my thoughts that a successful communications program should include both PR and content marketing to reach it’s full potential. Ideally, they should also be complemented with other programs, like social media.  A successful communications plan needs to have many moving parts, all of which should work hand in hand to provide target audiences with a variety of information to help them make the best business decisions possible.



Kate Nesbitt
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