B2B organizations are busy finishing the year on a strong note by generating leads and increasing revenue. However, businesses should also start planning and budgeting for next year’s marketing plan.
Whether it’s focused on developing new branding and messaging, launching a new product or service or implementing new lead generation strategies, one widely-adopted marketing tactic for B2B organizations (and one of the most important) is content marketing.
In fact, 89% of B2B marketers reported using content marketing this year and of the 11% who are not, 52% say they plan to launch a content marketing effort within a year (via Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs).
To help ease the burden of things you should be considering when planning your content marketing strategy for 2019, take a look at these insightful statistics from the 2017 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends report:
Small and Nimble or Large and Sophisticated?
With 55% of organizations having small content marketing teams and 22% having a larger, centralized group working with multiple brands and product lines, the ability to generate content among marketing teams varies depending on the size of the organization, budget and resources available.
This trend holds true today as many small- to medium-sized organizations and startups may only have the ability to allocate one or two marketing professionals to manage the company’s content marketing program. While this may present some challenges, it also provides opportunities for smaller teams to be nimble and creative as they pump out engaging, valuable content and avoid dealing with corporate red tape such as having content be reviewed and edited by other departments prior to publishing.
On the other end of the spectrum, larger organizations who can dedicate more resources and budgets towards their efforts will often have sophisticated and organized content plans in place to produce content across the spectrum of products and services.
No matter the size of your organization, having at least one person dedicated to your content marketing efforts will put your business in a better position as they build out the framework and foundation of your content marketing program.
How Clear is Your Content Marketing Program?
When asked whether it is clear what an effective content marketing program looks like, 59% of B2B marketers had no clarity or were unsure of the effectiveness of their program, while 41% responded having complete clarity.
These statistics show that B2B marketers are having trouble effectively communicating their content marketing program and its purpose with the rest of the team. As a B2B marketer focused on content marketing, it is important to develop measurable objectives around your organization’s business goals – and having the right content in place will help to hit these marketing targets.
Develop a Content Strategy Before Execution
Developing a strategy for your content marketing program should always be at the forefront; it should take place prior to creating content. However, only 37% of B2B marketers have a documented content marketing strategy. Another 41% have a strategy albeit undocumented.
Without a documented content strategy in place, it can be very easy for you and/or your team to lose sight of the goal of your content marketing efforts. By taking the proper time to create buyer personas, aligning your content efforts with the company’s lead generation goals and ensuring you have the proper system in place to capture and measure your content’s performance, you will be setting yourself up for marketing success.
Developing and Promoting Your Content
When it comes to content creation and distribution, 76% of content marketers prioritize delivering high-quality content versus high-quantity, and 69% focus their efforts on creating content geared towards their audience rather than their brand.
Why is this important? As previously mentioned in this post, more and more B2B organizations are opting in to content marketing, which in turn is causing smaller and medium sized organizations to have their content stand out and rank higher organically. However, slowing down and developing 1-2 high-quality pieces of content per week can be more beneficial to SEO in the long run. A long-form, well-thought-out blog post that provides real insight is more likely to keep readers on the page, which keep your bounce rates low. Incorporating strategy into your content marketing efforts will boost your online presence and help you build trust with your audience while creating opportunities to capture leads.
Remember, your content marketing program should be developed with specific goals in mind. It should focus on delivering valuable, engaging and insightful information to your audience. Whether your organization is in the initial planning phase of your content marketing efforts or has a robust strategy in place, keep these data-driven considerations in mind as you plan your approach for 2019.