As we approach the end of the year, content marketers around the world will be looking back over 2012 to help shape editorial calendars for the upcoming months. To help get us started, the Content Marketing Institute has released its 2013 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends survey to get the ball rolling.
The research includes the responses of 1416 B2B marketers in America, 91% of which included content marketing in their 2012 marketing strategies.
More is best
The main finding from the research, echoing a HubSpot report from earlier in the year, is that more is definitely better. While HubSpot released a glut of figures showing that companies with more content repeatedly got more traffic, leads and sales, CMI has revealed that more companies are spending more money on content marketing, with the average going up from 26% of a B2B’s marketing budget in 2011 to 33% this year. More than half of the companies surveyed planned on increasing their spending for 2013 (54%), while only 2% said they would decrease their budgets.
The most common reason for businesses participating in content marketing was given as increasing brand awareness (79%), while sales was only in eighth place (43%). However, when asked how the success of campaigns was measured, direct sales came in fifth place. Web traffic was the clear favourite.
The biggest problem businesses faced was producing enough content (29%), while the second biggest was producing enough content that engaged readers (18%).
Social media on the rise
The use of all content marketing tactics is on the rise, and social media has taken over as the most commonly used form. The survey found that the bigger companies generally use more social media channels, and LinkedIn was the most popular site, with 83% of companies having a presence.
It’s no real surprise that social media has claimed the crown, what with its all-surrounding presence in the last few years. The biggest content marketing strategies risers in 2012 were research reports (up from 25% to 40% from last year), video production (52% to 70%), mobile content (15% to 33%) and virtual conferences, including Google+ Hangouts (10% to 28%).
Start planning your 2013 content marketing campaign
While these figures come from North America, it’s likely that Australian businesses will follow suit with the global trend. And tempting as it is to leave things to the last minute, now is the time to start creating your content marketing strategy for 2013.
Oliver Gaywood- Content Strategist