Fast & Easy Friday: A Recap of the Week’s Top Content Articles & Insights

Each week, we provide a variety of new articles, research reports, podcasts and other resources that will help you, our fellow marketers, do your jobs better. This week, we’re sharing some insights of our own.

Yesterday, our VP of Client Services, Dana Harder, and I shared some key findings and takeaways from our inaugural Content Budgeting & Measurement Survey. This is the first time we’ve executed a branded survey of this caliber, and we were excited to share what we found! If you missed the live presentation, don’t fret… you can access an on-demand version here. And for your skimming pleasure, this week’s “Fast & Easy” column will focus on some of the key points from our presentation. Enjoy!

  • Sales wants to get involved in the content fun: One of the most surprising findings form our survey was the fact that marketers are feeling the most pressure from sales (62%) to quantify the value of content investments. Sales ranked above the CEO (53%) and even the CMO (47%). We think this is because more sales teams realize the potential impact of content. They want to leverage it to their advantage — to have more valuable and relevant conversations with buyers — but sometimes, they don’t know how to use it. We’re helping more organizations improve alignment between sales and marketing teams, and we’re helping companies create content cheat sheets and even social posts and images so they can ramp up their social selling efforts. This trend will become even more prevalent as organizations break down their internal silos and try to get everyone on the content bandwagon. 
  • B2B firms have measurement basics down, but they need to be more strategic: The majority of our survey respondents track the standard metrics, such as number of leads/inquiries (75%), traffic to site (67%) and number of MQLs (60%). But this data can easily turn to number soup if organizations are not strategic about what they measure and why. Dana noted during the presentation that marketers need to create content and measure with a specific end goal in mind. Taking this approach will help marketers zero in on the metrics that are most important to them, and of course, create content that aligns better with their strategic goals and initiatives. 
  • Content marketing budgets are rising, but the same challenges remain: You could say it’s the same old song and dance for us content marketers. Like several other studies, our research indicates that content marketing budgets are increasing year over year. But the same obstacles are hindering our content marketing goals: We have insufficient staff (57%), insufficient budget to invest in new tools and tactics (40%) and insufficient content volume to meet both internal/external demands (37%).

  • Marketers aren’t slowing down: Despite their challenges, B2B marketers don’t plan to back down. For one, they realize that in order to keep buyers engaged, they need to stay consistent. They pointed to email nurture programs as one of their most effective promotional tactics. To fuel this marketing engine, our respondents plan to create content more consistently (52%), develop/execute more nurture programs throughout the year (52%) and promote content more effectively across email, social and other promotional channels (51%). 

This is only a small sample of the data points we uncovered in our survey. Check out the on-demand webinar to learn more. Also be on the lookout for the full survey report, which should be released within the next week or so!

Happy Friday, everyone!