Traditional marketing channels like radio, television, newspapers, and magazines are gradually becoming less and less effective. In the meantime, content marketing starts to overshadow them with its effectiveness and practicality.
Part of the reason why it turned out so successful was because of the dramatic expansion of mobile connectivity—which later created a solid ground for the development of mobile marketing. Mobile devices became more suitable for texts, videos or images, which heavily increased the demand for high-quality content.
Content Marketing History
Content marketing is not a new phenomenon. The notion of content marketing has been around for a long time. In fact, its roots date back to the 18th century. In 1732 Benjamin Franklin first published the yearly Poor Richard’s Almanack, which aimed to promote his printing business.
In 1801 Bookstore LibrairieGalignani employed creative content strategies to grow their business. In 1861 Samuel Wagner launched American Bee Journal, a magazine that is still being published.
Content Marketing Definition
Content marketing is a channel that aims to create and distribute valuable content to attract a clearly defined audience. The ultimate objective of content marketing is to drive profitable customer action.
Content marketing is not about brands, products, or services. It is all about the audience. In other words, content marketing builds an audience that supports a business by spreading content to turn leads into customers.
That being said, let’s take a look at content marketing evolution in the last five years from different perspectives.
Content Marketing Usage
- The vast majority of businesses had already been using content marketing.
- 93% of B2B marketers were already using content marketing. (Source)
- 60% of successful marketers were creating at least one piece of content each week.
- 57% of the marketers reported content was their top marketing priority.
During the next two years, Content Marketing became a universal tactic, with the majority of companies using it.
- 75% of companies increased their content marketing budget and the staffing level, which means it was a successful tactic.
- 91% of the most successful business bloggers were publishing at least once a week.
- B2C content marketers increase their use of audio and visual content, written content, and images compared to 2-3 years earlier.
Content Marketing Strategy
Companies must have an updated marketing strategy because the trends in the online environment change every year. Looking back in recent years and comparing the data year over year can help marketers have more effective strategies.
Most effective marketers have a documented content strategy. It refers to the planning, development, and management of the content. In fact, the numbers speak for themselves.
- In 2015, 66% of the most successful marketers had a documented marketing strategy.
- 60% of those who had a documented plan rated themselves high in terms of content marketing effectiveness.
- 34% of marketers felt their content marketing was effective in 2016 instead of just 30% for the previous year.
During the next years, documented content writing has proven to be an invaluable asset to any company using content marketing. In 2019 84.5% of the US companies with at least 100 employees utilized documented content marketing strategy.
Several factors contribute to that success, including better quality content, strategy development, more time spent on content writing, and better targeting.
The Job of a Content Marketer
With the advancement of content marketing, the profession of a content marketer has also become demanded. While content marketing focuses on creating valuable online content, content marketers develop a content strategy to arouse and maintain interest in a brand.
In the last couple of years, data analysis, content writing, and editing have been the most important skills companies are looking for when hiring an employee. The growth rate in the industry shows that the career of a content marketer is going to flourish.
In 2017 51% of companies forecasted they would require an executive to oversee their content marketing. That is a 42% increase from 2016, and these numbers are still rising.
More content is in production, and there are more consumers to reach. In 2010, Content Marketing Institute was born to give content marketers information and guidance. CMI is the leading global content marketing education and training organization, teaching companies how to attract and retain customers. It helps marketers to get better results and enjoy their work.
Where to Publish the Content
In 2014, social media was becoming the place to post your content, so 87% of marketers used social media for promoting. According to statistics in 2018, 92% of B2B marketers used social media content, 83% used email newsletter s, and 81% used articles on their website, only 35% used printed magazines, and 30% used books.
YouTube and Facebook videos are becoming viral in the digital marketing game. Video content helps provide a high ROI and significantly increase conversations. Other popular places to share your content can be LinkedIn, Twitter, a Pinterest account, Instagram, etc.
But merely posting is not enough. You have to promote and measure. Four years ago, only 25% were measuring their social media campaigns at the individual pieces of content level. Great marketers measure and manage, which means they pay attention to the comments, shares, and discussions.
The Importance of Content Writing
In today’s busy digital marketplace, businesses must work to build trust with their leads and customers. Content marketing played and is going to play an essential role in doing so. Although content marketing used to be just a way to set yourself apart from your competitors, it has now become an absolute necessity for any modern brand.
People say “content is the king.” It is no longer a new strategy; instead, it is the one marketing strategy every business needs to incorporate if they want to remain competitive. The importance of content marketing becomes apparent when looking at the role that content plays in helping your business build and improve search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO plays an essential part in improving the visibility of your business online. Content marketing helps build brand awareness. It also helps establish your business and builds relationships with the customers. It took off and continues to flourish for one very simple reason: it is what people desire. They don’t want intrusive banners, ads, and popups. They want high quality, useful, and engaging content about things that matter to them.
There certainly are a few things we can say for the future. Content Marketing will become even more important in the following years. Besides, content creation and distribution will change radically.
AzatEloyan is a digital marketer and mobile marketing enthusiast. With over 5 years’ experience in content marketing and SEO, he believes that valuable and informative content is key. He is currently working as a marketing specialist at SendSMS.Global which provides SMS marketing services globally.