Fewer Than One-Third of B2B Companies Use Social Data to Improve Content Marketing

Posted March 2nd, 2017

According to preliminary research findings for The 2017 Benchmark Report on B2B Content Marketing and Lead Generation, 0nly 30% of survey respondents report that their companies use social data (monitoring online conversation in social networks) to try to improve content marketing activities — e.g., by identifying more relevant topics and/or audiences. And only 24% say that their social listening efforts have been “somewhat successful” or “very successful.” More than half (56%) indicate that social data is not currently being used at their companies for content marketing purposes.

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The Latest Stats on B2B Content Marketing Outsourcing

Posted August 14th, 2014

According to the latest benchmark research, a majority of B2B marketers look to outside resources for help in developing and distributing their content assets. On average, these companies outsource 68% of their content development (writing and editorial) activities, 64% of their content asset design activities and 51% of their demand generation activities. They also outsource 27% of their content marketing strategy.

The research findings suggest that marketers will continue to outsource a large portion of their content marketing activities over the next 12 months – in some areas, even more than they do currently. In particular, outsourcing is expected to increase slightly in the areas of demand generation (54% plan to outsource) as well as content marketing strategy (35% plan to outsource). Marketers report that their plans to outsource all other content marketing-related functions over the next 12 months will remain at roughly the same level as the previous 12 months.

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Why “Unbiased,” “Impartial” and “Objective” Matter in B2B Content Marketing

Posted May 24th, 2014

Companies have always had limited credibility when it comes to hawking their own wares. Even branded content that would appear to be informational and educational in nature will likely be assumed to have a hidden agenda.

It’s a different story, however, when the messages and content are coming from independent third-party sources.

That is certainly the case with B2B content marketing. The value of a whitepaper, eBook or other content asset naturally diminishes if it is perceived by the target audience to be nothing more than thinly-veiled marketing collateral. That explains why third-party gated content assets tend to generate significantly more downloads, and also produce higher-quality leads, on average, than company-branded content assets.

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More B2B Marketers Customize, License and Repurpose Content Assets

Posted February 19th, 2014

Oracle Eloqua just published new research pertaining to B2B content marketing. One key finding revolves around the need to customize content marketing to different stages of the buyer journey and measure the results. According to the research, few B2B marketers currently excel, or are even performing sufficiently well, in these areas. The research suggests that marketers understand the need to improve their performance, however, and are working hard to do so.

The study further validates a trend that we’ve seen for many years and have also written about extensively in books (e.g., Precision Marketing: The New Rules for Attracting, Retaining, and Leveraging Profitable Customers) and articles: that marketers are leveraging technology with increasing effectiveness to deliver more targeted marketing content. According to the research, approximately 6 in 10 respondents are currently delivering content based on behavioral patterns. Of course, no behavioral pattern is easier to detect than when people search on particular keywords that speak to their desire to research – and, ultimately, make – a specific purchase decision. Serving up relevant content assets based on that search criteria is the basis for any inbound marketing strategy, and it is how Smart Decision Guides “get found” by the right decision makers.

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New Research Highlights the Need for Outsourced Content Marketing

Posted December 15th, 2013

A new research study further validates what those of us who have been in the B2B content marketing business for many years already know: that 1.) Content marketing is becoming the primary workhorse for building brand awareness and generating qualified leads; and 2.) A majority of B2B companies are struggling to create content assets that their prospects actually want to download and read.

According to the joint study, conducted by MarketingProfs and the Content Marketing Institute, 93% of B2B companies now rely on content marketing, including eBooks, whitepapers, infographics and research reports, for much of their brand-building and lead generation activities. In fact, B2B companies are now spending an average of one-third (33%) of their marketing budgets on content marketing, up from 26% in 2011, and 54% of them plan to increase their content marketing budgets next year.

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