Effective Content Marketing

According to new research from Marketing Profs and the Content Marketing Institute, 86% of B2C marketers in North America are using content marketing, employing 12 individual tactics on average. But B2C content marketers are struggling with the effectiveness of their content marketing, says the report.

Highlights of the "B2C Content Marketing: 2013 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America" study include:

  • B2B marketers use social media more often than their B2C counterparts. However, B2C marketers consider it more effective
  • On average, B2C marketers use four social media platforms, compared with the five used by B2B marketers.
  • On average, 28% of B2C marketing budgets are allocated to content marketing, and 55% of consumer marketers plan to increase their content marketing spend

In general, the larger the B2C company, the more tactics used. Companies with 10,000 or more employees use an average of 16 tactics, whereas the smallest companies use an average of 10. Compared with their B2B counterparts, B2C marketers use more mobile content, mobile apps, print magazines, and print newsletters; however, B2C marketers use far fewer case studies, whitepapers, webinars/webcasts, and research reports.

B2C Content Marketing Usage

Tactic

% of Respondents

Social media (xcpt blogs)

84%

Attitudes on website

84

eNewsletters

78

Videos

70

Blogs

69

In-person events

63

Articles on other sites

61

Mobile content

43

Mobile apps

42

Print magazines

42

Microsites

41

Branded content tools

40

Case studies

38

Print newsletters

37

Infographics

33

Research reports

33

Licensed/syndicated content

33

Books

32

Webinars/webcasts

32

Digital magazines

29

eBooks

28

Annual reports

28

White papers

28

Podcasts

26

Virtual conferences

21

Games/gamification

17

Source: NCM/Marketing Profs, November 2013

Lack of budget is the challenge most cited by B2C content marketers: 52% (vs. 39% of B2B content marketers). Nearly an equal proportion cite producing enough content (51%) and producing the kind of content that engages (49%) as challenges they face.

The Top 3 biggestchallenges cited by B2C Marketers are:

  • B2C marketers said lack of budget is their biggest challenge (vs. 14% of B2B marketers).
  • 15% said producing enough content is their biggest challenge (vs. 15% of B2B marketers).
  • 15% said producing the kind of content that engages is their biggest challenge (vs. 18% of B2B marketers).

Biggest B2C Content Marketing Challenge

Challenge

% of Respondents

Lack of budget

23%

Producing enough content

15

Producing engaging content

15

Lack of knowledge, training, resources

10

Inability to measure effectiveness

8

Lack of buy-in/vision

8

Lack of integration across marketing

6

Producing content variety

5

Finding content marketing professionals

2

Source: NCM/Marketing Profs, November 2013

B2C marketers and B2B marketer agree on the primacy of in-person events as a content marketing tactic: 62% of B2c marketers say it's an effective tactic, as do 67% of B2B marketers. More B2C marketers than B2B marketers rank social media as "effective" or "very effective": 57% of B2C marketers vs. 49% of B2B marketers.

More B2C marketers than B2B marketers rank print materials (magazines as well as newsletters) as "effective" or "very effective": 51% of B2C marketers vs. 34% of B2B marketers for print magazines, and 42% of B2C marketers vs. 28% of B2B marketers for print newsletters.

Effectiveness of Tactics (B2C Users)

Tactic

Believe Effective

Believe Less Effective

In-person event

62%

38%

eNewsletters

62

38

Videos

61

39

Blogs

57

43

Social media xcpt blogs

57

43

Webinars/webcasts

56

44

Branded content tools

55

45

eBooks

54

46

Articles on website

53

47

Virtual conference

52

48

Print magazines

51

49

Source: NCM/Marketing Profs, November 2013

The average share of marketing budget spent on B2C content marketing is 28% (on average, B2B marketers allocate a bit more: 33%). 55% of B2C marketers say they will increase their content marketing spend over the next 12 months.

B2C Content Spending (Next 12 Months; % of Respondents)

Expectation

% of Respondents

Increase

45%

Significantly increase

10

Remain same

31

Decrease

2

Significantly decrease

1

Unsure

11

Source: NCM/Marketing Profs, November 2013

B2C marketers use an average of four social media sites to distribute content, whereas B2B marketers use an average of five. B2C marketers most often use Facebook, whereas B2B marketers most often use LinkedIn.

Social Media Sites Used (% of B2C Marketers)

Site

% of Respondents

Facebook

90%

Twitter

69

YouTube

65

LinkedIn

51

Google

41

Pinterest

35

All others

< 14% each

Source: NCM/Marketing Profs, November 2013

Concluding, the report says the most effective B2C content marketers:

  • Spend a higher percentage of their marketing budget on content marketing
  • Use more tactics and distribute content on more social networks
  • Tailor content to specific profiles/personas more frequently
  • Are far less challenged in terms of producing engaging content
  • Are less challenged with lack of buy-in/vision from higher-ups

For more information about the study from CMI, please visit here.

 

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1 comment about "Effective Content Marketing".
  1. Maryanne Conlin from RedRopes Digital/4GreenPs , December 5, 2012 at 12:30 p.m.
    Producing enough content and ensuring that it is engaging is a challenge that comes down to understanding how content is distributed and how it can be clipped and massaged to create a campaign around a message. The ability to create great content on a regular basis requires deep insight into the brand and regular experience exciting the passion that drives engagement - everyday writing with a cup of coffee in hand helps too!