We hear it all the time, read it on every marketing blog and in every advertising magazine. When it comes to buyers, your success is dependent on how effective your business's content is in driving awareness, engagement and profits. On average B2B marketers spend 28% of their overall budget on content marketing (Tweet this stat!), according to research from B2B Marketing. Content marketing can drive brand awareness, quality leads, and boost customer engagement. Content marketing can't be ignored because it's what buyers want throughout the purchase process. In the B2B space, your content marketing delivery could be the make it or break it moment. Let's take a look at what the B2B Marketing study found and what your business can take away.
How Others Make It
From allocating the right amount of budget to measuring content marketing ROI, marketers often like to see what their competitors are doing both successfully and unsuccessfully. An in-depth competitive analysis can help your business be more successful. What the B2B Marketing study found is that content marketing budgets vary widely, but top challenges and objectives remain consistent. Main challenges faced by B2B marketers include measuring ROI, generating leads and getting internal buy-in. Some of the top content objectives include brand positioning, demand generation and audience engagement.
- 66% of respondents reported spending less than 31% of their overall marketing budgets on content marketing. Only 8% spend in excess of 71% of their budgets on content specifically. 2% of marketers spend between 91-100% of their budget on content.
- When asked how content impacts sales 14% of the survey respondents said they saw a significant increase in sales with content marketing (Tweet this stat!), followed by 42% who saw a slight increase and 15% who saw no increase. Perhaps the most surprising number here is that 29% said they didn't know how content marketing affected their sales figures.
- On average, B2B marketers spend about 37% of their day on content marketing. (Tweet this stat!)
How You Can Break It
It isn't just about doing some competitive analysis; it's about taking insight gained from that analysis and turning it around to make changes in your business that lead to greater success. Make consumer-centric content to break away from your competitors. Only 1% of the B2B Marketing study respondents said content marketing was of little or no more important. This means 99% of your competitors are likely using different forms of content to reach your same audience. Here's four steps you can take to break away.
- While the most-used content types include press releases and blog posts, your business would be better off if it focused on the most-effective types of content: case studies, white papers and videos.
- Make content marketing a company-wide focus. 43% of respondents expressed that content marketing is critically important, but getting buy-in is a big challenge. Content marketing is important so make sure it's a focus, from sales follow-up emails to content-driven Facebook ads.
- Enable sales with the content they need to close. The right content, delivered at the right time, can lead to an increase in sales and it's up to marketing teams to make sure sales teams have what they need readily available.
- Test and measure which content is the most successful, and on what platform, for lead generation. Demand generation and determining ROI may be top challenges, but by measuring your efforts, your team can optimize content and ads as well as its presence on various platforms.
Content marketing is critical to your business's success as consumers become more empowered and seek out information that can help them make better decisions when it comes to running their business. Inbound marketing, through content marketing, is how businesses can attract and retain customers for the long-term. Focus on making your marketing and sales team content-driven and delivering the types of content that are most effective. Then, measure and optimize your efforts.