The Forward Observer > Marketing For The Front Line of Sales

Why B2B Companies are Moving to Content Marketing

Written by Douglas Burdett | Apr 24, 2012 11:00:00 AM

B2B companies who use content marketing can raise awareness quickly, generate leads, increase website traffic and close more sales.

Regardless of industry or company size, 9 in 10 organizations are now marketing with content, according to a comprehensive content marketing study of the state of B2B content marketing.  The study was fielded by MarketingProfs and Juna42, in association with the Business Marketing Association and American Business Media.

Content marketing was defined for the study as follows:

“Content marketing/custom media (sometimes called custom publishing, custom content or branded content) is the creation and distribution of educational and/or compelling content in multiple formats to attract and/or retain customers.”

The study confirms that marketers are investing time and resources in content marketing:

  • On average, B2B marketers employ eight different tactics to achieve their marketing goals.
  • 51% report that they plan to increase their spend in content marketing over the next 12 months.
  • Marketers on average spend over a quarter of their marketing budget on content marketing.

The study indicated the top reasons why marketers are adopting content marketing strategies:

  • Brand Awareness (78%)
  • Customer Retention/Loyalty (69%)
  • Lead Generation (63%)
  • Customer Recruitment (61%)
  • Website Traffic (55%)
  • Thought Leadership (52%)
  • Sales (51%)

The most used content includes:

  • Social Media (79%)
  • Article Posting (78%)
  • eNewsletters (61%)
  • Case Studies (55%)
  • Blogs (51%)
  • White Papers (43%)
  • Videos (41%)

What's the secret to effective content marketing?  Those study respondents who rated their work as more effective than their competitors' do 2 things:

  1. They utilize a greater number of content marketing tactics.  On average, those effective marketers use eight tactics, whereas their competitors use six.
  2. They invest more of their budget on content marketing.  The effective marketers allocate 30% of their budget to content marketing.  Their competition spends just about half of that (18%).

There are 3 other commonalities amongst the more successful content marketers:

  1. Effective content marketers use a more extensive distribution network. This includes Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube.
  2. They deliver the right content at the right time.  Consideration for the prospect's "stage in the buying cycle" is used by over a third of the effective content marketers.
  3. They have senior management support.  Over 90% of the successful content marketers have substantially more buy-in from the top brass, compared with 75% of the less effective content marketers.

Click on the following link to download a copy of the report, "B2B Content Marketing."

photo credit: emma.maria via photo pin cc