Content marketers in the B2B space know that the game is always changing. First, it was all about the blog, then Facebook ruled. Now, case studies and video content are each surging in popularity and importance. Recently, MarketingProfs along with the Content Marketing Institute released a fascinating study of “The State of B2B Content Marketing In North America,” with loads of great insight into the content tactics top B2B marketers are using to raise brand awareness and generate new leads. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights:
- 91% of B2B marketers rely on content marketing as the central component in their integrated approach. That other 9%? Well, we probably haven’t heard of them anyway.
- Social media takes the cake as the top tactic for B2B marketing, with 87% of survey respondents citing it as a primary focus. The top 30% of effective tactics are all digital. Web articles, videos, case studies, blogs, all direct email marketing all ranked in at 70% or higher. Games/Gamification is a newcomer to the list, but at 11% definitely indicates a trend toward interactivity as a lead gen tool.
- LinkedIn rules the roost when it comes to social media channels that B2B markets identified as most effective outlets to distribute content. The use of LinkedIn is up almost 8% from 2011 with 83% or respondents referencing it at the top spot. In a lot of ways, this makes sense. B2B marketing is often a matter of appealing directly to decision makers. LinkedIn is where the decision makers dwell. In fact 59% of respondents tailor content to directly appeal to individual decision makers.
- In the past year, the use of videos as a B2B marketing tool has increased by almost 20%, with 70% of respondents listing video as a primary tactic. (Check out this Borenstein-produced video created for a client in the defense-aerospace sector)
- Good news for content creators: 54% of respondents say they intend to increase their content marketing budget in 2013. That means the focus on content as a B2B brand promotion and lead gen source will only intensify over the coming year. Also, it’s the small companies that will be spending a larger percentage of total marketing budget on content. Micro biz (less than 10 employees) is expected to spend 42%, while big business (1000+ employees) will top out at only 24%. So, keep those keyboard fingers nimble!
For most marketing professionals, the biggest challenge in content marketing is simply keeping up with the demand for new, meaningful content. And It’s not enough to produce quantity – quality content is still king. If you’re considering ways to improve B2B content marketing efforts for your business, or you’ve got great ideas of your own, we’d love to hear from you. Check out our Contact Us form, or give us a call at 703-385-8178.