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Winning the war: content marketing adoption widens

We’re winning the war. Content marketing is being integrated more frequently and more fully by marketers of every stripe and size. BtoB Magazine’s recent study, “Content Marketing: Ready for Prime Time” found that content marketing was either “fully integrated” (12%) or “very integrated” (22%) for about a third of respondents. (34% total.) An additional third (36%) were “moderately integrated” and the final third were only “somewhat” integrated or did no content marketing. (23% and 7%, respectively.)

Content page-2
Content page-2 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Content-Content Interaction (Informal)
Photo credit: jrhode

Why the uptick in content marketing?
  • Improved Engagement
  • Increased Trust

56% cited improved engagement with important audiences and 47% were attracted by a perceived increase in trust by their audiences. Interestingly, only 23% felt that improved SEO was a key reason for content marketing’s use.

Content marketing is clearly not a fad. There’s still plenty of hucksterism surrounding it, as there is with every new marketing strategy. Perhaps that explains some firms’ reluctance to take the leap. But the underlying principles are the same for content marketing as they are for solid marketing in any medium.

And it’s not hard to see why it’s growing in popularity and effectiveness. As traditional marketing has become more and more invasive, interruptions of any kind become less welcomed by target audiences. Content marketing, with its focus on obtaining your audience’s permission and providing valuable information, is the natural response from marketers looking to regain their effectiveness and connect more solidly with their audience.

Not sure how to implement content marketing, or what metrics to measure your progress by? Here are a few more interesting data points from that BtoB study.

Goals / Metrics of Success

  • 51% Lead Generation
  • 38% Brand Awareness
  • 34% Thought Leadership
  • 29% Sales

 

Favored Content Types

  • 74% Online Articles
  • 65% Email Newsletters
  • 60% White Papers
  • 59% Blogs
  • 58% Case Studies
  • 57% Videos

The takeaway for any marketer not actively engaged in content marketing has to be, jump in or be left behind. With only 7% not doing any content marketing, that’s a relatively small group. But thee 23% who are only somewhat integrating content marketing need to step up their efforts if they’re going to keep pace.

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Andrew Schulkind

Since 1996, Andrew Schulkind has asked clients one simple question: what does digital marketing success look like, and how can marketing progress be measured? A veteran content marketer, web developer, and digital strategist, Andrew founded Andigo New Media to help firms find a more strategic and productive mix of tools that genuinely support online brand goals over time. With a passion for true collaboration and meaningful consensus, his work touches social media, search-engine optimization, and email marketing, among other components. He views is primary goal as encouraging engagement. Getting an audience involved in your story requires solid information architecture, a great user experience, and compelling content. A dash of common sense doesn’t hurt, either. Andrew has presented at Social Media Week NY and WordCampNYC, among other events, on content marketing and web-development topics. His technology writing appears on the Andigo blog, in a monthly column on Biznology.com, and for print and online publications like The New York Enterprise Report, Social Media Today, and GSG Worldwide’s publications LinkedIn & Business, Facebook & Business, and Tweeting & Business. Andrew graduated with a B.A. in Philosophy from Bucknell University. He engages in a range of community volunteer work and is an avid fly fisherman and cyclist. He also loves collecting meaningless trivia. (Did you know the Lone Ranger made his mask from the cloth of his brother's vest after his brother was killed by "the bad guys?")

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