Probably the hottest trend in marketing and communications is content marketing. If not the hottest overall, it’s certainly up there with mobile and social, and honestly it’s a major part of all mobile and social strategies anyway.
Forbes reports that 93% of business to business marketing/communications professionals use content marketing as a strategy and there’s a compelling reason for that. According to Demand Metric, B2B marketing generates three times as many leads per dollar as traditional marketing tactic. In one sense, marketing to entities that have money to spend makes a lot of sense. A group called the Customer Content Council says content marketing is now a $44 billion industry.
The trend seems to indicate that every month, B2B marketers are spending more and more money on content. Part of that may be the knowledge that content drives social media usage, particularly shareable or multimedia reach content. One survey indicates this strategy spills over from business people to individual consumers, the concept that consumers feel closer to companies due to the quality of their content.
The content marketing executive is becoming a dedicated position in many major companies. The majority of the Fortune 500 companies don’t have someone with that title yet, but more than 40% do, and that number is climbing. The number of platforms each company uses is also increasing – the average is now six social media platforms versus five last year according to Forrester.
Whether it’s called content marketing, brand journalism or even brand integration, it’s clear the lines are getting blurred, and no matter what label you attach to it, the trend is here to stay.