2014 B2B Content Marketing Research Highlights

Strategy is key to content marketing effectiveness.  That’s just one of the many findings revealed in the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs’ fourth annual B2B Content Marketing: 2014 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America report, sponsored by Brightcove.  Here are some highlights from the report.

Only 44% have a documented content strategy

A documented strategy makes a difference, as 84 percent of marketers who say they are ineffective at content marketing said they have no documented strategy. B2B marketers who have a documented content strategy are far more likely to consider themselves effective (66 percent vs. 11 percent).

b2b-content-Documented-Strategy

42% consider their content campaigns effective

Not only is the adoption of content marketing on the rise (93% of marketers use content marketing this year compared to 91 percent last year), but 42% of B2B marketers consider themselves effective at content marketing, up from 36% last year.

B2B content marketers use 13 tactics on average

Compared to last year, the average number of tactics used has risen from 12 to 13. The use of all tactics has remained fairly consistent, with one standout: Infographics have seen a considerable increase, from 38% last year to 51% this year. B2B content marketers continue to rate in-person events as the most effective tactic.

B2B_Usage_Tactic_1

Across-the-board increase in social media use

B2B marketers are using all social media platforms to distribute content more frequently than they did last year. In addition, they now use an average of six platforms, versus five last year.

The social media platforms that have experienced the biggest surges in use, year over year, are SlideShare (40% vs. 23%), Google+ (55% vs. 39%), and Instagram (22% vs. 7%).

b2b-content-research-2014-Social_Media

Social media effectiveness remains uncertain

Each year we ask marketers to rate the effectiveness of traditional tactics, but this year we also asked them to rate the effectiveness of social media platforms. Similar to what we’ve seen with traditional tactics, there is uncertainty in terms of effectiveness. LinkedIn is the only platform that the majority of B2B marketers consider to be effective.

b2b-content-research-2014-confidence

The Full Report

While B2B content marketers continue to be challenged with producing enough content and producing the kind of content that engages — in addition to the ever-present challenge of “lack of time” — they are still making impressive strides.

Read the entire report to get answers to these and many more questions:

  • What are best-in-class B2B content marketers doing differently than their peers?
  • What type of functions are B2B marketers outsourcing (a new question asked this year)?
  • What are the primary goals for content marketing — and what are marketers doing to measure success?
  • How are marketers tailoring content?

You can also view Brightcove’s infographic around the key findings of this year’s B2B content marketing research.

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2014 B2B Content Marketing Research Highlights
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About the Author

Joe Pulizzi
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Joe Pulizzi considers himself the poster boy for content marketing. Founder of the Content Marketing Institute, Joe evangelizes content marketing around the world through keynotes, articles, tweets and his books, Managing Content Marketing and Get Content Get Customers. Joe's latest book is Epic Content Marketing (McGraw-Hill). If you want to get on his good side, send him something orange. For more on Joe, check out his personal site or follow him on Twitter @JoePulizzi.
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