19 content marketing statistics that matter in 2017

In a world of content, what works and what doesn’t? And how can you keep up in an ever-changing industry?
It’s clear that content marketing is continuing its rise in popularity. 70% of marketers were planning to create more content in 2017 compared to 2016, which continues a trend from the previous year where 75% of companies increased their budget and staff for content marketing. Content marketing is becoming inescapable.
Industry insiders have been touting content marketing as everything from the death knell for paid advertising (hardly), to a load of b****** (definitely not). The reality is that it can be a highly effective method for raising awareness, developing engagement and generating leads, but that it works best as part of an integrated marketing strategy.

So why is it important for marketers to get on board with content marketing?

Research has shown that 47% of buyers engage with as many as 5 pieces of content before contacting a business for more information. Content comes in many forms, so you might be serving up some of this content without realising it. The copy on your product pages, the words in your tweets, the video on your homepage…
Mobile content
Taking a co-ordinated approach to your content strategy can help you create a more effective user journey, as well as improving your brand perception. Up to 68% of customers feel more positive about a brand after engaging with content from it, so it’s worth investing time and effort into getting it right.

Quality content can improve brand perception, with over two-thirds of customers feeling more positive about a brand after engaging.

It can also boost your other marketing efforts. For example, earlier this year, one in four marketers cited lack of content as a major limiting factor to their email success. Email newsletters are nothing without effective content, but, then again, neither are websites, or brochures, or any other marketing material.
It’s looking more important now, isn’t it?

Content marketing in businesses

It’s clear that content is important for marketing success, but it has value across business departments, something reflected in the fact that, according to the Content Marketing Institute,  92% of marketers work for an organisation that views content as a business asset.
Content serves a wide variety of roles throughout a business, most commonly serving as a brand awareness tool, with 49% of marketers stating awareness as their main content objective. The second and third most common goals are search visibility and lead generation respectively.

Brand awareness is the main objective for 49% of content marketers.

While search visibility and lead generation activity can be easily measured, brand awareness is often trickier, which could be why measuring ROI is one of the biggest challenges facing content marketers, at least in the B2B sphere. This lack of clear measurement could be why only 30% of these marketers actually report that their organisations have an effective content marketing strategy.
There is a widely held belief among organisations that content marketing isn’t being used to its full potential. 40% of marketers don’t feel like they have the right tools, while 45% have the tools, but aren’t making the most of them. This is where turning to content specialists can help – an established digital agency can help to build an effective strategy and get more from your efforts.
Content marketing team planning strategy

Content marketing mediums

So what type of content is being created?
Blogs are obviously important to content strategies, as 60% of content marketers focus on blogs in their work. Keeping your blog up to date helps to signal to search engines that your site is active and relevant, as well as making it easy for you to communicate your brand message with potential customers.

Importantly however, there is a wide world outside of blogs, and if they’re all your content strategy is made of, you’re not hitting your full potential.

Infographics are liked and shared on social media 3x more than any other type of content. As well as being the most shared type of content, the demand for infographics has increased 800% in the past year demonstrating just how popular this form of content is.
The benefits of infographics are many. They’re eye-catching and easy to share, making it more likely that they’ll be seen by your potential audience. They present information in a way that’s easy to digest, helping you get your message across. They’re great for link-building, particularly when you’ve got some original research or a strong new angle.
As we might have mentioned once or twice in previous blogs, video is huge. Every minute, 500 hours of video content are uploaded to YouTube. Video views in total have risen 26% from last year, with ads views up by 24%, highlighting the high demand to create and share engaging content in this medium.

Organic social media’s ability to promote your business to new audiences is often underestimated. 81%+ of marketers found that increased traffic occurred with as little as 6 hours per week invested in social media marketing. In our view, any content marketing strategy is woefully incomplete without social media backing it up.
Share quotes from your blog posts, clips of your latest video, sections of your infographics, industry news, competitions, behind-the-scenes photography, GIFs, memes – anything that gets your audience engaging with your brand and your content. If you don’t share your content, how do you expect anyone to see it?

Blog content

Back to blogs now, and one key trend in blog content is that it is getting longer and more visual. The length of the average blog post is up about 19%, coming in at about 1,050 words. Length isn’t the only factor in a blog’s success, but it’s clear that in-depth articles are returning better engagement than those that just skim the surface of a topic.
Almost contrary to the idea of longer blogs is the news that the average reader spends just 37 seconds reading an article or blog post. How are these 1,050 words being consumed in just 37 seconds? Well, clearly, they’re not. What’s happening instead is that users are opening articles, perhaps lured by the headlines or the promotion, but are then finding that they’re not interested and leaving before they get started.
How can you stop this? Well firstly, you can ensure that your headlines aren’t just attention grabbing, but are also a good indication of the content users will find when they click through. No-one wants to be a poor quality clickbait producer.
Poor quality clickbait headlines
Savvy content marketers are also using data to tailor their content more effectively towards different segments of their audience. Experian has found that emails with personalised subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened, which shows how important personalisation is when keeping users interested. A good way to start is by creating content personas for your customer base if you haven’t already – our content marketing team can help with this.
The world of content marketing is constantly changing, so your strategy needs to evolve with it. The consultants and strategists at Clicky can help, just get in touch to get started.
Want to see more marketing statistics?
25 Marketing statistics 2016
Social media statistics 2016
Youtube statistics 2016

Written by Hollie Hines

Content & Social Media Specialist

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