- Marketers are struggling to measure the ROI of their content marketing efforts, letting other influences shape their strategies, per a report shared with Marketing Dive by The CMO Council, a global network of senior marketing executives, and content marketing platform Rock Content.
- Almost half (49%) of marketers cited budget as the top consideration in content marketing, ahead of time constraints (44%) and requests from executives (32%).
- More than four out of ten (43%) marketers rate their content as inconsistent, while only 7% say they consider it "exceptional." Another 34% said their content was good and improving, the survey of 195 marketing leaders found. Sixteen percent of respondents said they struggle to create content that is "impactful" with customers and business prospects.
Content marketing is a vital part of marketers' efforts to build the reputation and visibility of brands among target customers, and the CMO Council's survey of marketing executives suggests they recognize plenty of ways to improve their strategies. The biggest concern is measuring the effectiveness of content marketing, which would help to focus their efforts and sharpen their strategies. A scattershot approach results in producing too much content of varying quality, diluting its effect, the survey suggests.
Marketers compound the problem of producing too much content by broadening distribution through programmatic channels that promise to reach target audiences. Different messaging is appropriate for different times of day and media channel, instead of repeating the same content among these outlets. The best content communicates brand promise and value, delivers thought leadership and differentiates products and services. In addition, content boosts demand and helps to acquire leads while reaching customers, prospects and partners, the study said.
"Producing any content without understanding the buyer or their intent can compromise the best laid marketing programs and demand generation campaigns," Diego Gomes, CEO of Rock Content, said in a statement. "This means doing a bit more work during the research phase to analyze data and make informed decisions to produce the right content strategy that will fuel the creation of engaging content that drives outcomes."
The CMO Council's latest report follows a study released last week that found only 12% of marketers think their content marketing programs reach the right audiences. Only 21% of marketers surveyed said they work closely with their sales teams to develop and measure demand-generation programs driven by content. Additionally, 88% of business buyers believe online content influences their vendor selection but only 9% view vendors as trusted sources for content, the study found.