Posts Tagged ‘Content Marketing Institute’

Outsourcing of content marketing set to increase this year, says report

April 20, 2012

by Brian Oliver

Seventy percent of companies plan to outsource at least part of their content marketing in the next 12 months, according to a new Digital Content Marketing Survey commissioned by the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and branding agency Brandpoint.

This follows CMI research earlier this year which revealed that 62% of companies are already using third-party expertise to strengthen their content marketing activities (compared with 55% in 2011).

The 2012 Digital Content Marketing report – based on a Readex Research survey of nearly 400 ‘marketing decision-makers’ – found that 99% of respondents had recently used some form of content marketing.

And what these companies are looking for in a third-party content provider, says the report, is the ability to deliver “engaging and creative storytelling”, “custom content”, and “professional-level writing”.


Industry observers believe the shift toward using external content providers is being fuelled by the growing importance of publishing well-written content on a regular and sustained basis.  Many companies, it seems, are finding they don’t have enough time, expertise and resources to achieve this in-house.

They also recognise that poor quality writing – with bad grammar, spelling mistakes and factual errors – can have a negative impact on their brand’s reputation. Matt Cutts, head of Google’s Webspam Team, recently warned that sites with frequent content errors tend to have lower rankings in search results.

As Contented Marketer recently reported (“Frequent publishing helps to improve ROI”), the ability to publish quality content on a regular basis is a key factor in maximising investment in content marketing campaigns. At the same time, Google is now upgrading the page-rankings of websites that deliver high-quality content that people want to read and share (see “Google updates making quality content dominant factor in SEO”).


The new Digital Content Marketing Survey found that video is the type of content that marketers are most likely to outsource, followed by infographics, online articles, digital white papers, e-books and blogging.

Only 18% of the marketers surveyed cited cost as the deciding factor when choosing whether or not to outsource content marketing. Eighty percent stated they were happy to pay a little extra for the added value of well-crafted, customised and professionally-written material.


Social content, blogging, press releases and online articles are the forms of content used most often, says the report, with marketers finding that social content, e-newsletters and blogging provide the best results.


Eighty two percent of respondents said it is more important for their website and blog copy to be written for people rather than search engines – with SEO expertise ranked fifth among the list of 11 qualities marketers want in a content provider.

Joe Pulizzi, founder of the Content Marketing Institute, said: “This survey affirms that marketing pros are embracing the value of online marketing, but they also acknowledge the need to stay true to certain fundamentals. Quality continues to be a key requirement for success across all forms of content marketing.”

He added: “While the Internet continues to revolutionise the way we all do business, the need to tell a clear compelling story through our marketing efforts remains constant.”

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About the author:

Brian Oliver is a business journalist and the MD and founder of UK strategic communications consultancy Focus Marketing Communications.


CONTENTED MARKETER Magazine is brought to you by content marketing specialist Focus Content Marketing

Visit our website at: Focus Content Marketing


Majority of UK companies intend to increase marketing budgets this year, survey reveals

March 3, 2012

Some firms now investing 25 percent of marketing spend in content marketing.

by Brian Oliver

The majority of UK companies are planning to increase their marketing budgets this year, according to MindMetre Research’s latest forward-looking survey of British business.

After canvassing more than 2,000 large and small British companies, the annual MindMetre Marketing Barometer, published at the end of February, found that some 57 percent of firms plan to boost their marketing budget in 2012. Only 18 percent intend to cut their marketing spend.

A similar survey 12 months ago showed no net increase in marketing spend – suggesting that there has been a marked surge in optimism among British businesses after a timid 2011.

“These forward-looking survey results augur well for 2012,” said MindMetre’s managing director Paul Lindsell. “If marketing budget trends are taken as a forward indicator of overall business sentiment, it may herald the beginnings of a true upturn for Britain Ltd. Unlike other studies, which only track the activities of Britain’s very largest businesses, this study embraces representation from the full range of company sizes.”


At the same time, other surveys have found that companies are planning to boost their investment in content marketing this year after recognising that high-quality original content can play a key role in moving customers through the buying process.

Some firms are now spending a quarter of their marketing budget on content marketing, according to a study by the Content Marketing Institute.

The importance of implementing an integrated content marketing strategy was underlined by a February report from strategic communications firm Fleishman-Hillard and market research company Harris Interactive. The report found that 89 percent of buyers now turn to Google, Bing or other search engines to find information on products, services or businesses before making a purchasing decision.

Fleishman-Hillard’s findings support the idea that creating original online content aimed at providing relevant and valuable information to consumers or B2B buyers – without using pushy sales language – will help businesses appeal to new prospects.


Lisa Turner, marketing director at the Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing, said she was encouraged to find “solid research” backing up anecdotal evidence and the Institute’s own findings.

“These are exciting times for marketers,” she said. “Difficult economic conditions taught us to be agile, flexible, adopt new techniques and to make every marketing penny count. Now that confidence appears to have returned, it’s that ability to embrace change and to prove marketing’s worth that will bring the greatest rewards going forward.”

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About the author:

Brian Oliver is a business journalist and the MD and founder of UK strategic communications consultancy Focus Marketing Communications


CONTENTED MARKETER Magazine is brought to you by content marketing specialist Focus Content Marketing

Visit our website at: Focus Content Marketing

Are you ready for the Content Marketing explosion?

February 11, 2012

by Brian Oliver

As businesses of all sizes continue to find it hard to generate sales leads in the current economic climate, more companies are recognising that integrated content marketing can play a vital role in building relationships with potential customers and moving them through the buying process.

Key content marketing tools include: customer-focused blogs, magazine-style brand microsites, social media content, eNewsletters, digital magazines, videos, infographics, eBooks, and ‘how-to’ eGuides.

A recent survey by the Content Marketing Institute found that some 60 per cent of B2B companies intend to increase their investment in content-led marketing in 2012.

Of course, content marketing has been around for a while. It’s a ‘pull’ mechanism designed to hook potential customers and reel them in. It’s all about engaging with them, and getting them to trust you, by creating and sharing content that is helpful and informative. In other words, promoting your company or brand without actually ‘selling’.


What has dramatically changed the content marketing landscape, though, is the fact that there are now more tools for sharing content than ever before.

This means what used to be regarded as a ‘soft’ tool that took ages to make anything happen has now emerged as a powerful weapon capable of delivering impressive results pretty quickly.

As a result, even global companies like Coca-Cola and Procter & Gamble are now putting a much greater emphasis on developing an integrated content strategy – creating and distributing original content that is relevant, valuable, informative and entertaining … and shareable.

The great appeal of content marketing is that it can be employed just as effectively by small start-ups and SMEs. You don’t need loads of money to spend on ‘old-school’ techniques such as advertising and direct mail in order to attract customers.


To illustrate the growing importance of content marketing, BlueGlass Interactive – a leading Internet marketing specialist based in Tampa, Florida – has created an excellent infographic called The Content Marketing Explosion.


Created by BlueGlass Interactive

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About the author:

Brian Oliver is a business journalist and the MD and founder of UK strategic communications consultancy Focus Marketing Communications


CONTENTED MARKETER Magazine is brought to you by content marketing specialist Focus Content Marketing

Visit our website at: Focus Content Marketing