We're marketers, and we love stats. So here's a fresh crop, drawn from brand-new studies, that reveal how B2B companies are leveraging content marketing. Enjoy!
56% of B2B marketers see web traffic as the key metric for measuring content marketing success, according to a new survey by Crowd Research Partners -- not quality lead generation (only 37%) or social sharing (40%), though other reports indicate they're catching on.
81% of respondents felt they could do a better job of tracking ROI, with 24% admitting they were "not at all successful" in measuring results.
46% of them admitted to not having a documented B2B content marketing strategy...though in an odd dissonance, 50% claimed they did have a data-driven content marketing strategy.
80% of B2B marketers have a content marketing strategy(32% documented, 48% not documented) according to Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs.
The same poll found that only 30% B2B marketers thought their organizations were effective at content marketing, an actual decline of 8% from ]38% last year. Better awareness of what constitutes "effectiveness" may be a factor. ]
B2B marketers in the CMI/Marketing Profs survey allocated an average 28% of their total marketing budget to content marketing, the same as in 2015.
But the most effective content marketers allocate 42%, and the most "sophisticated/mature," by CMI's measure, allocate 46%.
One stat that's not new but still worth keeping in mind: Up to $50 billion in B2B content may be wasted each year: SiriusDecisions has suggested that 60-70% of the content produced by B2B companies goes unseen or unused. If we accept that $76 billion was spent on B2B content marketing in 2014, then a huge amount of money is getting flushed away -- probably because of poor insights and targeting, simply bad content, inadequate syndication and other factors.
What's it all mean?
Here are some key takeaways from all this fun data:
- B2B companies are making progress, but have a long way to go in understanding and realizing the full potential of content marketing.
- Companies that had clear goals, documentation, planning, solid internal communication and prior experience are the most effective at utilizing content marketing.
- It's incumbent on content marketing professionals to help companies reach that potential by A) crafting truly useful content that attracts traffic and engagement, and B) being diligent in explaining, tracking and reporting the ROI involved.