- About 58% of B2B marketers use content for lead generation while 55% use it for increasing customer engagement, the top two goals for B2B marketers in their content marketing strategies, according to Ascend2’s “2016 State of Content Marketing” survey report.
- Separate research from DemandWave revealed that 61% of marketers rely on white papers for lead gen, followed closely by webinars at 58%, the top two tactics for driving leads.
- One interesting finding in Ascend2’s study was that reports and videos were deemed the most difficult content types to create, but they also ranked in the top three in terms of effectiveness. About three-fourths of marketers surveyed reported outsourcing most or all of their content marketing work.
From traditional advertising to social media and even customer service, pretty much everything a brand does today can be seen as content. And every piece of content that a brand produces has to serve value to consumers for them to engage with the brand.
“Content marketing may be a relatively new term, but it’s still marketing. No doubt the launch of the first marketing website was closely followed by the first meeting about driving more web traffic. Content marketing is a different method of meeting the same goals we’ve always had," David B. Thomas, senior director at Leadspace, told Marketing Dive. "Instead of paying for banner ads and hoping people will click on them, publish useful and interesting content to boost your search engine ranking so that people will find your content when searching for answers.”
For B2B, content marketing is most effective at lead generation, but it can also serve at a higher level in creating brand awareness and thought leadership. For marketers, the biggest challenge is having a strong content marketing strategy and creating quality content.
“Lack of an effective strategy is the top obstacle to content marketing success. Planning an effective strategy requires a balance of what is most effective with what is realistic to create," Todd Lebo, partner and CMO at Ascend2, told Marketing Dive about the challenges of content marketing. “Lack of an effective content marketing strategy and the resources required to create compelling content are often caused by the third significant barrier to success – budget constraints.”