Study: Two-thirds of b-to-b marketers will commit to content marketing next year
Sept. 26, 2012 -- Most b-to-b marketers are ramping up their content marketing efforts, according to a new study by BtoB magazine. The study, Content Marketing: Ready for Prime Time, reports that 66 percent of b-to-b marketers plan to be “very” or “fully” committed to content marketing next year, leading to a whole new group of competitors, or partners, for b-to-b publishers. The new research also found that 34 percent of b-to-b marketers today are already “very” or “fully” engaged with content marketing (last year, the number was 18 percent).
“Digital platforms ushered in a whole new class of content that is now taking hold in the b-to-b space,” John DiStefano, research director for BtoB, told ABM. “At the same time, it's transforming media companies' marketing services outreach. Editorial shares readership with marketing content—the two are often indistinguishable, in fact—and b-to-b publishers need to offer marketing services that provide thought leadership, brand awareness, customer relations, prospecting and of course, sales.”
The data in the recently released report is based on 425 interviews with U.S. b-to-b marketers. The study takes a look at the current state of content marketing adoption, trends, key marketing goals and the most difficult challenges marketers face.
The study found that when it comes to content marketing, the key goal for most marketers (51 percent) is lead generation. Other goals include brand awareness (38 percent), thought leadership (34 percent) and sales (29 percent). Overwhelmingly, the most popular content marketing method for marketers is social media (80 percent). Other favored methods include posting articles (74 percent), producing e-newsletters (65 percent), whitepapers (60 percent), blogs (59 percent), case studies (58 percent) and videos (57 percent).
DiStefano notes that publishers’ backgrounds give them “significant opportunities in marketing services,” including using their brand power for custom content, content licensing and consultative services.
“To optimize content marketing and their own marketing services, publishers need to carefully align their own services and capabilities with marketer goals,” he says. “This is particularly true when offering consultative services and professional guidance. In addition, publishers need to pay careful attention to measurement tools, for clear evaluation of success.”
The full report is available for download here for $149.95.
-Elizabeth A. Reid