B2B Content Marketers Need to Move Beyond the Top-of-the-Funnel

Oct 24, 2019

Most B2B marketers use content marketing successfully to achieve top-of-the-funnel goals such as brand awareness and audience education. But they are missing out on relationship-building opportunities deeper in the funnel. That’s a key finding in Content Marketing Institute’s newly released B2B Content Marketing 2020: Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America report produced with our friends at MarketingProfs, and sponsored by Sitecore.

While the 2020 research does show a notable increase in those who are successfully using content marketing to nurture subscribers, audiences, and leads (68% versus 58% one year ago), they still have work to do on activities that deepen relationships — like building loyalty with existing clients/customers and growing their subscribed audiences — which are crucial to long-term content marketing success. In fact, B2B marketers who characterize their organizations as extremely or very successful with content marketing are far more likely to achieve these relationship goals with their content efforts when compared with all surveyed B2B marketers.

Additionally, the 2020 research shows that small content marketing teams are the norm — it’s rare to find internal teams of more than five full-time employees dedicated solely to content marketing. So, it’s not surprising that half of those surveyed outsource at least one content marketing activity with content creation being the most likely (84%).

Other Key Highlights:

  • Among the content types used, in-person events are the highest performing for securing and converting leads.
  • Effectively targeted content distribution may be an issue for around one-third of all surveyed.
  • 84% use paid distribution channels for content marketing purposes.
  • Most use metrics to measure content performance, but fewer have KPIs or measure content marketing ROI.

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