September 09, 2014

Study Shows Marketers Lack Effective Inbound Marketing Strategies

Putting the ‘content’ in content marketing isn’t easy, according to a new study conducted by marketing research firm Ascend2. The study, which polled nearly 300 marketing professionals worldwide, highlighted the dire need for strong content creation strategies but noted that the many marketers today are struggling:

  • 54 percent of marketers believe content creation is “the most difficult tactic to execute”
  • 41 percent say their top challenge for inbound marketing is a “lack of content creation”
  • 46 percent say that a lack of an effective strategy is their most challenging obstacle

The survey also polled marketers to discover their biggest goals for their inbound efforts in the year ahead. Some of these included increasing conversion rates (49 percent); improving lead quality (48 percent); and increasing sales revenue (46 percent).

The survey reveals two key insights on the current state of marketing: The first is that we as marketers know how critical content creation is to cultivating an effective strategy and achieving our goals. The second is that the many of today’s marketers grapple with content creation and, thus, lack an effective strategy.

Four Things You Need for Building—and Maintaining—an Effective Content Creation Strategy

To achieve your short- and long-term marketing objectives you will need a solid content creation strategy. But remember that content creation doesn’t mean simply putting pen to paper; there are several things that should be considered before marketers ever begin actually creating.

Here are four things you must consider to build a sustainable and effective content creation strategy:

1.Identify your target audience: Ask yourself who you hope will be picking up your content, engaging with it and sharing it with others. After all, if you’re looking to use your content for prospecting or selling, then you better know exactly who you are trying to reach.

2.Solidify your company’s core competencies: Great content is a huge competitive differentiator; it helps bolster brand awareness and gets your company’s name in neon lights. But you can’t increase brand awareness with content until you have a firm grasp of what makes your brand. What are your company’s core competencies, truest values and mission at hand—and how do you plan to have your content reflect these?

3.Cultivate the right tone/style of your content: After you have identified who will be engaging with your content, you must consider how your content will speak to your audience. This involves all things related to tone, style and syntax. For instance, you don’t want to sound too young if your content is primarily speaking to a more seasoned segment of the C-suite.

4.Know just how much content—and what kinds of content—you should be producing: An integral part of the content creation process is knowing just how much content to produce, as well as knowing what kinds of content to produce for maximum results. For example, how many blogs should your team churn out every week? How often should your company be pushing out its eNewsletter for best engagement rates? Should you consider sprucing up your Web copy while you’re at it?

Executing these critical elements of content creation is far easier said than done. If you’re part of the segment marketers struggling with these four elements of content creation, consider teaming with a best of breed content strategy vendor.

A content strategy vendor can help you clear the fog, enabling you to look clearly at the content goals you have at hand. For example, at Content Boost, our expert editors serve as personal brand consultants for clients, advising them on exactly how much content they should be producing (10, 20 or 50 blogs per month, for instance); the tone, style and feel of their content; which social channels and blog platforms to utilize; and much more.

Already this year, nearly half of companies are turning to a content strategy vendor like Content Boost. Marketers can create content anytime any day, but that doesn’t mean their content creation strategy will have maximum impact, increase conversion rates, improve lead quality and make for a bigger bottom line.

Want to learn more about how a content strategy vendor can help your content marketing needs? Then click here.


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