Content Marketing is rivaling social media marketing in the hype stakes — and for good reason. It may not be particularly new, but in the age of the informed buyer and zero-cost distribution (the Internet), it’s what works in B2B marketing.
The 2010 Content Marketing Spending Survey by Junta 42 confirms the trend (though anyone with a passing acquaintance with Twitter, LinkedIn or any B2B marketing blog won’t need it confirmed):
- 59% of marketers surveyed plan to increase spend on content marketing (the third straight year of growth)
- Content marketing now accounts for a whopping 33% of total budgets (for large companies, it’s 18%, smaller ones, 40%)
- Almost 75% are leveraging their content in social media channels (wonder what the other 25% are doing…)
- About 10% are leveraging content through mobile apps (watch this climb next year)
The survey indicates we might be turning a corner, though. Of 17 content marketing-related topics, mobile is the only one that marketers ‘feel it’s important to know more about’. If marketers feel they know all they need to know about blogs, social media, eBooks and webcasts, we could be approaching saturation — when all these things become an expected staple of B2B marketing. As the novelty factor wears off, the quality factor will be the only differentiator left (that’s a good thing).
I must admit, though we’ve been advocates of content marketing since way before it was called content marketing, I tend to be allergic to bandwagons. When everyone agrees on the way ahead, it’s time to look for some new routes. Content Marketing is no fad; it’s just common sense. But the craze (if anything in B2B can be called a craze) has definitely elevated the medium over the message.
In the recent ClickPredictions eBook from ClickDocuments, I predicted a lot of ‘mutton dressed as lamb’ content this year. Is it just me or is that the sound of baa-ing?
Photo credit: Ben’s photostream – Creative Commons