4 Reasons B2B Firms should be Spending More on Content Marketing

If you are not sure about the right marketing technique for your B2B firm, then content marketing is the area where you should work harder. Content marketing works for all kinds of firms such as small size firms, large size firm.  Internet is full of content, content ad content!


Generating your own piece of information gives your organization with a variety of untouched opportunities to boost revenue. No matter if you distribute a handful of articles in a week, sharing videos, doing webinars, any form of unique informational content could convert your visitor into the potential customer.

Why you should keep a separate budget for content marketing? Here’s the answer:

  1. To leverage your existing marketing mix

The content marketing activities which companies are doing these days is far away then it should be. Content marketing can be a meaningful tool to get good brand equity. Lot of B2B firms trying to get leads to increase the sales. For that you must be doing SEO, Social media campaigns, promotional activities, events and lot more. But, content marketing support all these activities actively.

  • PPC: If you are running the paid PPC campaign you can provide them informational landing page where you can keep them engaged with the unique informational article, or maybe short write-up related to your industry. Why? Because most of the time it’s not necessary to push for the sale, maybe the customer is not in the situation to purchase the B2B product or services. B2B revenue generation needs lots of attention and involvement from the top management. It’s a business buying decision which goes through different phases. So, providing the information and relevant links to R&D can help your visitors to know your business better. When they engaged and loved your B2B product or service you can retarget them by doing other remarketing campaigns from Facebook Ads or Google Display Remarketing Ads.
  • SEO: You must be thinking how content can leverage website optimization effectively! But, it’s true, content marketing helps your site getting ranked in Google search results Content is the critical ranking factor. Without content you can reach no where in the search results because of highly competitive marketplace. Adding more keywords in the content by adding the blog posts can help you cover the trending keywords to beat the competition.
  • Social media: What people going to see? Why they would click on your content? How can you keep your audience engaged in the social media? The answer again is Content! You have to provide different forms of content such as infographics, charts, facts and stats, information articles, latest trends only then you can implement a successful social media strategy.


  1. Get potential visitors by driving targeted traffic

Through content marketing B2B firms can acquire good-quality traffic.

Content promotion can assist you increase visitors to your website through all of the above mentioned channels. To generate B2B leads, content marketing contributes in the most effective manner according to the studies. It’s simple and cost-effective method to get leads as compare to the traditional communication techniques.

Content marketing shows magical effects to convert qualified leads from potential visitors in B2B firms. It could increase the conversion rate of your website from 5% to 10%. You are offering the information what they want to read, in the forms of news, what’s new, Whitepapers to make decisions making easy for them. You give unique content instead of pushing your product to increase the sale. It is the trust building exercise to get a large number of potential visitors to your business website. Content marketing is the kind of relationship based marketing.

  1. Low risk factor

When you spend the amount on the advertisement campaigns you are at high risk, because of the highly competitive environment. You have to pay even double sometime to get a click. It doesn’t guarantee you to give qualified leads. Advertising is like an experiment you run multiple times to get into there.

In contrast, content marketing is an inexpensive source of revenue generation. It doesn’t cost you an extra penny to publish the article on your own site, it doesn’t charge for distributing the content on the existing social media channels. You can experiment with your content format without risk. You can provide different content variations like Whitepapers, press releases, videos, short stories, success stories, video testimonials which keeps your audience engaged with your business.

  1. To stay in the competition

Most of the B2B firms in the various industries already doing it and making money. If you are not spending on content marketing you are losing a huge market share! You should be in the competition, to keep challenging them.


According to the research –

“Only 30% B2B firms using content marketing effectively, which was 38% last year.”

“The content marketing budget is 28% of the marketing budget in B2B firms.”

More than 50% B2B firms are planning to expand their content marketing spend by 28% to 45% in future. If you are still thinking of why you should spend your money for content marketing you should take it very seriously this time. You can be the market leader by just focusing on well-designed content marketing strategy. Please write me on @01richa90. I would love to hear your feedback.

About author:

Richa Pathak is a product marketing consultant having 5+ years of industry experience. She has contributed more than 25 firms around the world, & advised handful of startups to grow. She writes about product marketing, event promotion, digital marketing, social media, content marketing, email marketing, and advertising. You can connect with her on the Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.


25 Brands That Made it Big with Content Marketing

Content marketing is one of the newest forms of marketing, but it’s proving to be one of the most effective. According to a survey from the Custom Content Council, 72% of marketers feel that content marketing offers a better ROI than magazine advertising, while 69% feel that it’s more effective than direct mail and PR.25-brands-that-made-it-big-with-content-marketing

Despite these statistics, some marketers are still a bit skeptical about the benefits of content marketing. Below, we’ve profiled 25 companies that made it big through the effective use of content marketing. If you’re still on the fence about this powerful new strategy, these success stories are sure to make a believer out of you.

1.   ADP


Image by Digital Ralph

ADP is a leading business outsourcing solution provider. The company leveraged their expertise in human capital management to create white papers, which have proven to be highly valuable to their customers. They also developed a search engine to help brands find white papers on human capital management topics for their respective industries.

These efforts are highly effective for generating new leads. According to Rob Peterson of Biznology, these new leads translated into $1 million worth of new sales opportunities for ADP within the first three months alone.

One of the reasons that ADP’s content marketing strategy has been so effective is that the company provides detailed estimates of the amount of money that readers can save using ADP’s solutions. For example, their search engines estimate that a human resources coordinator in a firm with 50 employees would save $13,370 by employing ADP’s solutions and strategies, giving brands a compelling reason to download the firm’s white papers.

Key takeaway: White papers are an often-overlooked resource for content marketing. But if you create a large number of them, you would be wise to create the necessary functionality on your site to make it easy for viewers to search through them.

2.   Cisco


Image by Leonardo Rizzi

Cisco has always actively used content marketing and social media to scale its marketing campaigns. However, the brand’s marketing team wasn’t sure how effective these strategies were until it promoted a new product solely on social media.

Cisco launched a new router a couple years ago and decided to use it as a case study to measure the ROI of its content marketing and social media strategies. Executives were stunned to discover that their digital campaign allowed them to reach their lead goals for $100,000 less than anticipated. LaSandra Brill, senior manager of global social media at Cisco, said that the company will use these results as the basis for future product launches:

“It was classified as one of the top five launches in company history. It was the crossing the chasm point for us in the adoption phase of social media, and helped us get over the hump of internal acceptance.”

Key takeaway: Social media is a great way to draw attention to your content marketing efforts, but it’s always important to quantify your ROI. Learn from Cisco’s example and develop a system to measure the effectiveness of your own campaigns.

3.   DemandBase

DemandBase is a marketing technology provider that specializes in serving B2B brands. Recently, the firm used white papers, infographics, SlideShare, and webinars to source new leads for one of their campaigns. According to Top Rank Blog, the company generated 1,700 new leads and connected with 125 webinar viewers, helping them to generate over $1 million in new revenue through content marketing.

As a marketing technology company, DemandBase has invested a lot of time trying to optimize their content marketing strategy. Rachel Balik, the senior content marketing manager, has provided an overview of the evolution of DemandBase’s content marketing strategy on the company blog. Balik also says that she attends Content Marketing World regularly to learn more about best practices in the industry to improve their overall strategy.

Key takeaway: Results from content marketing can vary significantly. Companies that stay on top of the best practices will have a clear edge over their competition.

4.   Cox Media Group

Cox Media Group is one of the largest publishing, broadcasting and digital media companies in the world. While most of its exposure occurs through television, radio and newspaper, Cox still uses content marketing to help build its brand online.

Recently, Cox Media used an online “Success Kit,” which provides valuable information to help other businesses succeed, to engage with the small- and medium-sized businesses that their advertisers were trying to reach. The content was available in several different formats, such as e-books and video, which helped them connect with many previously untapped leads. According to this report from G3 Solutions, the Success Kit received 5,000 downloads over the past year, helping Cox to generate more than 2,000 leads.

Key takeaway: You’ll generate more leads by creating a detailed and valuable piece of content for your customers than you will cranking out several lower quality pieces. It’ll take more time and resources to develop, but the ROI will be worth it in the long run.

5.   Virgin Mobile

Virgin Mobile

Image by James Cridland

Virgin Mobile was one of the first wireless communications and VoIP providers toadopt social media and content marketing. Since then, they’ve used these digital marketing services to provide better service to their customers. Virgin Mobile Live, for example, is a new social newsroom that the company uses to promote apps, music and other digital content throughout the day.

Ron Faris, Head of Brand Marketing at Virgin Mobile, told Forbes that these online marketing strategies have played a key role in building the Virgin Mobile brand and generating new leads. Faris claims that Virgin Mobile has been more successful than its competitors because the company focuses on improving social engagement, rather than merely expanding social reach:

“Scaling our content efforts isn’t just about expanding the size of our social reach across new platforms. It’s also about deepening the level of engagement we have with our fans in the social communities they hang out in. We’ve been successful so far in rewarding our fans with Virgin experiences on Facebook and Twitter. The next step is to evolve our social platform to allow fans to reward one another with special moments.”

Key takeaway: Your follower count isn’t nearly as important as the engagement you build with these followers. Taking the time to engage with your followers will pay off in the long run.

6.   Toshiba

Though content marketing is typically viewed as a B2C marketing strategy, Toshiba has proven that it can also help B2B brands generate new clients from across the globe.

In 2011, the brand created a “Smart Community” in an effort to promote awareness of its renewable energy solutions. They optimized their platform for the keyword “smart community” and invested in a massive SEO campaign to boost their rankings. Their campaign proved to be remarkably effective, helping to generate 160,000 global followers on LinkedIn through the Smart Community campaign.

Toshiba has had other forays into content marketing that have been beneficial in generating new leads. Recently, Toshiba Medical collaborated with a renowned economist to use content marketing to educate customers about the complexities of the Affordable Care Act and other medical issues, helping the brand to stand out among its competitors.

Key takeaway: Targeting a competitive, high-traffic keyword can be a great way to boost the ROI of your content marketing strategy. You may need to invest a lot of resources in your SEO, but the results will likely pay for themselves.

7.   Crowe Horwath

Crowe Horwath

Image by Martin Van Hoeller

Crowe Horwath is a leading accounting and consulting firm. In 2013, the companylaunched a content marketing process for reaching financial institutions with $1 billion or more in assets. Their strategy consisted of generating nearly 50 different pieces of content centered around several topics of interest to their target customers, using all the following formats:

  • Case studies
  • Infographics
  • Video
  • Executive briefs


The results of their entire content marketing strategy have been spectacular, but one infographic in particular was especially effective. According to the Content Marketing Institute, this infographic generated nearly 800 new contacts, two of whom paid $250,000 for Crowe Horwath’s services.

Key takeaway: Content marketing isn’t just effective for B2C companies. Brands that are trying to reach large institutional customers should also utilize these techniques.

8.   Marriott

Many hotel companies use content marketing to grow their brands, but Marriott intends to take it to the next level. They recently created a new global creative studio, which will publish a variety of entertaining content pieces for the travel industry. According to David Beebe, Marriott’s vice-president of Creative, Content Marketing and Global Marketing, Marriott strives to become the number one travel content publisher in the world:

“We view this as the opportunity to be the world’s largest producer of travel-related content.”

Content marketing has always been a great strategy for Marriott to build its brand, and the company is encouraged that this new initiative will help even more.

Key takeaway: The benefits of content marketing can be virtually limitless, but you need to set the bar high to keep seeing better results.

9.   American Express

American Express

Image by Matt_Weibo

Celine Roque of Contently recently wrote a very insightful piece about American Express and its longstanding commitment to content marketing. Roque points out that the world’s largest travel company has been using content for brand building for the past 100 years, beginning with a series of engaging travel guides in 1915 that played a prominent role in growing the company.

American Express took their content marketing strategy digital in 2007, when they launched the OPEN Forum. Since then, this forum has become a place for customers to congregate with experts to help them solve many of their pressing business challenges, while, at the same time connecting them with American Express’s brand messages.

Key takeaway: When carried out effectively in the long run, content marketing—whether online or offline—can generate significant results for forward-thinking businesses.

10.   Live Person

Live Person is an online voice and chat solutions provider that also uses content marketing to connect with new customers. The company is currently pioneering the realm of digital engagement, which is helping them to rapidly grow their brand. Their new technology has also inspired some remarkably innovative content, which is accelerating their growth even further.

Last year, Valerie-Ann Leary, Marketing Manager, Client Marketing and Demand Generation, wrote about the reception of a new e-book that they created—The Future of Digital Engagement: 10 Thought Leaders Share Predictions for 2014. Leary said that Live Pearson generated enough exposure to win the Killer Content award from Demand Gen Report for the Best Influencer Campaign. However, while winning an award was a nice affirmation of the success of their content marketing strategy, the real reward was all the new exposure that they generated, which presumably translated into many new leads.

Key takeaway: There are a number of ways that your company can benefit from content marketing. If your efforts earn brand mentions from other organizations, you’ll generate even more visibility—so take pride in every piece of content that you create.

11.   Intelligentsia

Intelligentsia is a coffee company that produces roast coffee blends from German vintages. Their business model may not be high tech, but content marketing has been instrumental in helping them grow their brand. The company has engaged in a variety of content marketing practices, but many content marketing experts argue that their brew guides are what really set them apart.

What is so special about the Intelligentsia brew guides? It sounds simple, but what makes them stand out is their amazing photographs and detailed instructions for their readers. As a result, these guides have been shared on Reddit, Vimeo, and a variety of other platforms.

Key takeaway: Creating a valuable line of content that differentiates you from your competitors can help take your brand viral on social media.

12.   Callaway Golf


Callaway Golf

Image by Dan Perry

One of the reasons that brands fail with content marketing is that they try to sell, rather than provide genuine value to their followers. Callaway Golf has been successful with its content marketing efforts, simply because they focus more on engagement and educating their fans than on pitching their products.

Callaway has been particularly successful with video marketing. Salesforce reports that some of their videos are among the most popular golf videos on YouTube. One of them, “How To Hit a Bump and Run,” has generated nearly 30,000 views in less than a year.

Key takeaway: Content marketing is about providing value to your customers. Stop selling to them and you’ll immediately see better results.

13.   IBM

IBM has been on the forefront of electronic technology since World War II. They’ve capitalized on their decades of knowledge by developing highly-educational content marketing strategies, which has helped them maintain their edge as a digital solutions company.

IBM has utilized many different forms of content to generate leads and nurture relationships with their customers. Here are some of the approaches they’ve taken to content marketing:

  • Offering educational videos through multiple video sharing sites
  • Reaching out to key influencers in their industry
  • Aggregating blog posts and other content through their Voices page


All of IBM’s content marketing strategies have helped them build the brand. However, Leslie Reiser, the Program Director for Digital Marketing Worldwide, says that the most important lesson we can learn from IBM is to take advantage of influencers:

“We’re identifying the right influencers that align with our business priorities. Those priorities align with our product and service portfolio. For example, we have identified and nurtured relationships with bloggers who specifically focus on cloud computing, or business analytics, or data security in that mid-size business space.

Those particular people are influencers within the marketplace. They have credibility. They are authentic. They have independent followings and a network.”

Key takeaway: You can’t ignore the value of leveraging leading voices outside your company. Industry experts, bloggers, and critics can all help your brand tremendously if you take the time to reach out to them and build relationships.

14.   Intel


Image by Henry Muhlphordt

Intel is another one of the world’s leading digital technology brands. It should, therefore, come as no surprise to you that they’d leverage this expertise to take advantage of the power of content marketing.

Currently, Intel manages a blog called IQ. Most of the content comes from employees, but they publish anything that supports the company’s brand image. The blog includes a number of great posts that have drawn a substantial number of viewers, including an article called Could High-Tech Vertical Farming Feed the Future?

Here is a quote from Bryan Rhoads, the editor of the blog:

“We developed an algorithm to curate social content in a way that leverages our employees. We want to publish what they’re sharing and what’s grabbing their attention. It’s a combination of a social algorithm, plus an employee filter that crowdsources what they are saying and sharing, and uses that as a discovery tool.”

Key takeaway: Creating a specialized hub for the kinds of content your customers are looking for is a great way to draw them to your brand. Come up with some ideas for unique content and publish it on your blog to differentiate your brand in your industry.

15.   Lana Del Rey

Many celebrities have utilized content marketing to grow their fan base, but few have been as successful as singer Lana Del Rey. Del Rey’s content marketing strategy isn’t overly complex, but it has proven to be very effective nonetheless.

Most of her content marketing strategy has been coordinated through Tumblr. She created a post about her upcoming album “West Coast”, which featured several beautiful pictures of herself and Kylie Jenner. Within a year, the post received over 27,000 likes and shares on Tumblr. While her celebrity status and strong fan base undoubtedly played a role in her blog’s success, the posts she’s created have definitely helped to build her brand.

Key takeaway: Brands with a well-known reputation have a huge advantage over their competitors. If you’re an established company, leverage your reputation to its fullest potential through your content marketing strategy.

16.   Random House

Random House

Image by hiroaki maeda

Random House’s marketing strategies have certainly evolved over the past 90 years. Most recently, the global publisher has been actively using content marketing to reach new followers through social media. They’ve tested a variety of different strategies, all of which appear to have helped boost their brand reach.

But one of the newest and most successful strategies Random House has embraced has been using Medium to aggregate content from their active publishers. They alsolaunched a new consumer discovery website to help people find relevant content. Random House CEO Markus Dohle says that content marketing has played an important role in maintaining and growing Random House’s brand image:

“Digital presence is an important part of strengthening this connection that we are building: one author, one book, and one reader at a time.”

Key takeaway: No matter who you are, you already have a network that you can utilize to boost the results of your content marketing strategy. Collaborate with your employees, customers, and affiliates to generate and share unique content.

17.   Workiva

Workiva offers a real-time cloud service to help clients collect report and analyze data. Due to the sophistication of their service, the company needs to diligently educate customers in order to attract new buyers and grow their business. Thus far, the company has used a variety of content marketing techniques to boost their brand reach and improve customer retention.

Workiva collaborated with Kapost to develop its content marketing strategy. Here are some of the metrics that prove their efforts were successful:

  • 84% increase in average blog views
  • 21% increase in referral traffic
  • 37% increase in social media backlinks


Erin Wall, Director of Marketing at Workiva, feels that the campaign went very smoothly:

“Our initial metrics were a validation for all teams involved that our content was headed in the right direction. We’re excited to adjust and refine our strategy and Kapost processes in 2015. We know there is a lot more we can do to provide helpful, relevant information to our audience.”

Key takeaway: Your content strategy will be much more successful if you define your success metrics in advance and then use them to optimize your campaigns.

18.   LinkedIn

While it initially struggled to compete with Facebook, LinkedIn has become a popular content sharing platform, particularly for B2B companies. Much of this success derives from its use of content marketing best practices.

To date, LinkedIn has used tools such as Sales Navigator and TeamLink to improve the performance of its content marketing strategies. Ralf VonSosen, the Head of Marketing, Sales Solutions for LinkedIn, says the results have been astounding:

“We started seeing a 50% increase in leads to meeting conversion rates.”

Key takeaway: Generating valuable tools can be a great way to create more value for your customers.

19.  Optum

Optum is a healthcare technology company that provides resources to help clients improve the quality of their decision-making processes. They operate in 140 different countries, which means that they must constantly develop new leads in order to scale their business.

Recently, Optum released an e-book called Moneyball Analytics which provided a big boost to their lead generation campaign. According to Top Rank Blog, the e-book was downloaded over 500 times in the first month, and Optum eventually generated nearly 20,000 leads through the campaign.

Key takeaway: e-books may be an older form of content, but they remain highly effective for generating new leads. Take the time to create a unique e-book that answers the questions your potential customers will have.

20.  Autotask

Autotask is a leading software as a service (SaaS) company that specializes in serving other IT firms. They serve over 5,000 clients all over the world, but are always looking for new sources of leads. Content marketing has been one of the best opportunities for them to drive new leads.

One of the company’s most successful campaigns included a number of different content forms, including infographics, e-books and videos. While the campaign represented a large investment, it generated enough revenue to pay for itself after six months. In total, it was responsible for 20% of the inquiries the company received for two whole months.

Key takeaway: Don’t be afraid to invest a large portion of your marketing budget in content marketing. When executed correctly, you can see very noticeable results.

21.   Xerox


Image by Zack Seward

Xerox is the world’s leading photocopying company. While that sounds like something to brag about, it has, ironically, created some branding problems for the company. Since Xerox is so widely known for its photocopiers, many customers don’t know anything about its other services, such as IT outsourcing. Xerox solved this problem by rebranding itself with content, which played a huge role in boosting business in its other verticals.

One of the biggest components of Xerox’s content marketing strategy is its digital magazine, Real Business. Since the magazine is incredibly popular, many brands pitch Xerox to get coverage. Xerox content marketing manager Ben Rand says that Real Business plays a big role in reshaping the way the company’s customers act:

“We’ll be looking to inform and educate our customers as they tackle these large shifts in how they do business. The goal is to change perceptions around the Xerox brand so people understand that we’re a global leader in technology-driven services.”

Key takeaway: As mentioned earlier, creating a unique blog can be a great way to distinguish yourself in your industry. Xerox shows that it can also be a great way to change customer perceptions of your brand and to educate them about any overlooked services.

22.   Expedia

Expedia is a well-known travel brand that relies heavily on content marketing. Currently, their strategy involves a variety of different content channels, but they also strive to earn a presence in high-authority publications whenever possible. The company hired a firm called Quad Digital to place a number of well-designedinfographics on such sites. They also publish guest articles on many authority websites.

Another great example of Expedia’s content marketing success is its series of travel videos, which they labeled Find Yours. Adage points out that the reason these videos earn so much traction on social media is that they focus on customer engagement,rather than simply being promotional.

Key takeaway: Brands that create a diversified content strategy will see stronger results than those who focus on a single content marketing technique.

23.   Red Bull

Red Bull is infamous for using content marketing to extend its lead in the energy drink business. The company reportedly generated over three times as much revenue as Monster in 2013, which can be largely attributed to its use of Red Bull TV to improve its branding.

Red Bull TV is a website that provides videos and live streaming of events from across the world. According to Target Marketing Magazine, Red Bull was one of the first companies to create content that its customers actively sought out. As a result, it drew a large number of people who were interested in the adventurous activities that Red Bull drinkers often participate in, instantly setting it apart from others in its industry.

Key takeaway: Your content strategy doesn’t need to be centered solely around your industry. It can also be successful by focusing on the activities that your customers are interested in.

24.   Coca Cola

Coca Cola is another classic brand that’s taking advantage of the power of content marketing to boost its market share. Improving its branding strategy is crucial, since soft drink sales have been declining for the past decade.

Of particular note is Coca Cola’s new content strategy, called “Content 2020,” which the Content Marketing Institute praised for its originality. Coca Cola has publicly stated that it’s committed to using content to boost its brand as much as possible. Jonathan Mildenhall, VP Global Advertising Strategy and Creative Excellence, believes content is instrumental in boosting the company’s brand:

“All advertisers need a lot more content so that they can keep the engagement with consumers fresh and relevant, because of the 24/7 connectivity. If you’re going to be successful around the world, you have to have fat and fertile ideas at the core.”

Content marketing has helped the company reposition itself. It still faces challenges as industry revenue continues to falter, but the company has weathered the storm better than PepsiCo, Cott, and other producers. Sales have started to pick up this year, and Business 2 Community author Hephzy Asaolu has said that there’s strong data proving that growth in revenue is strongly associated with content marketing efforts, which have helped Coca Cola to engage with customers all over the world.

Key takeaway: Companies that compete in crowded or struggling industries need to reshape their customers’ perceptions. Coca Cola’s success proves that content marketing can be a great way to accomplish this.

Follow the Lead of Successful Content Leaders

Some of the brands covered here are newcomers to the market, while others are household names that have been around for more than a century. However, they all have one thing in common: they recognize the value of creating great content to engage their audience and generate new leads. Get inspired by their examples and use their success to fuel your own content marketing efforts.

Have these brands inspired you to scale or revamp your content strategy? Share your opinion in the comments below:


7 Content Marketing Trends That Will Reign Supreme in 2016

Once upon a time, SEO and content marketing were separate concepts…

They are quickly becoming one and the same.

Google places value on high quality content and ranks your site based on the experience visitors have with your content.

Gone are the days of aggressive link building and over night SEO strategies. Instead marketers are encouraged to play a long-term game by creating resourceful pieces of content that will naturally attract attention from credible websites and social media networks.

This Google trends graph pits “link building” against “content marketing”…

Google content marketing trends graph

It’s no surprise to see a decline in search volume when it comes to link building and a continuing growth for content marketing.

Content marketing is becoming more and more popular to build relationships with your audience, and if you don’t take action now and build a solid content marketing strategy your competition will get ahead.1

To stay ahead of the curve, it is essential to keep up to date with the latest content marketing trends. To make it easier for you, here are top 7 content marketing trends that will rule 2016.

Trend#1 – The magic of user-generated content

There is no one better than your customers themselves to create content for your business.

It will be authentic, trust-worthy and appealing to your target audience (as they are your target audience). Plus, people naturally want to know about a product or service from the user’s perspective5.

The Guardian rightfully states that 70% of consumers place peer recommendations and reviews above professionally written content. And this is what happens with everyone, right? So, ask your customers to create content for you and display it on your site or in your store to gain the trust of more and more people.

One great example of user-generated content is Coca-Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign in which the company produced Coke bottles with customers’ names on the labels and handed them out throughout different cities.

They asked the customers to share pictures of their personalized coke bottle on Twitter and other social media platforms. The company attributes the campaign to a 2% increase in US sales.

Coca cola user-generated content marketing trends

What do the experts say?

User generated content (UGC) allows you to collect, moderate and publish at scale from content collected and curated from brand advocates and fans.” – Jeff Bullas, world’s #1 Content Marketing Influencer, Social Media Marketing Strategist & Speaker.

Trend#2: Zero in on interactive storytelling

People are not mere spectators these days. They demand content in which they can get involved, without feeling targeted. They seek a visual story that’s powerful and out of the box.3

A blog published at suggests to be mindful that your target audience is more likely to remember and react to great stories.

By interactive storytelling I mean that you can present your content through or with images, videos, infographics, quizzes, calculators, assessments, generators, or graders.

According to IMPACT Community Coordinator, Carolyn Edgecomb, storytelling is one of the best ways you can develop deeper connections with your target audience.

Have a look at the video content made by New York Times T-Brand Studio.

NYT content marketing trends

What do the experts say?

There’s so much static content out there on the Web that it’s important for businesses to produce content that yields enough power and substance to capture the target audience’s interest right from the get-go. This is where interactive content provides an optimal solution to businesses, especially to small businesses. It is perhaps the best way to increase traffic and conversion among small businesses.”1 – Rahul Aggarwal

Trend#3 – Episodic content is a must-have

Breaking your content into parts and organizing it over a time-period will keep your audience engaged. It builds anticipation as you create a narrative and give breaks in between.

Episodic content has a long lasting impact on the reader’s mind which cannot be achieved by one piece of writing. If you are able to create suspense in your reader’s mind through the first episode of your content, they will most likely come back to watch or read it.

An article on SEMrush explains how to take care of the timing of episodes with a long enough gap to ensure that your target audience actively seeks the next instalment.

There are many examples of episodic content that you come across everyday but hardly notice. This technique never fails to generate curiosity about your brand. For instance, an example of episodic content is Serial. Serial changed the podcast game and produced a captivating story in weekly, hour-long segments. Every episode of Serial ended with the host leaving her audience with a cliffhanger, thus creating a desire to hear the next episode.

Dustwun content marketing trends

What do the experts say?

Thousands of people are, usually collaboratively, producing a lot of short-form, episodic fiction and hundreds of thousands more are reading it.” Anna Rafferty, Director, Digital Marketing Strategies, Penguin.

Trend#4 – Try personalizing your content

Simply creating content is not enough anymore.

The challenge is to produce something that connects with your audience at an altogether different level. With so much content being produced every day, people are getting immune to even the best of it. Therefore, you need to add a flavor of personalization to your content in order to get the desired results.

Wouldn’t it be great to have different content for different types of visitors? I mean, you can design your page in a way that visitors feel that the page speaks in their language.

According to TruConversion, personalized content talks directly to your target audience and offers the exact solution he/she is looking for. And an article on states that content personalization makes money.

For instance Paramore, an American rock band’s merchandise store, uses geo-location data to direct visitors from different parts of the world to their respective pages. This helps the buying process for customers as they are able to see prices in their national currency. This is how it looks when people visit the site from US:

Personalization content marketing trends

(Image source:

And this is how it looks when anyone visits the site from the United Kingdom:

Geo-location content marketing trends

Whenever you’re personalizing your content, make sure that everything in the content – whether it’s the font, words or the overall voice —speaks to your target market and resonates with them in the best way. So that when they look at it, it’s their experience, their voice, their taste they see.

Also, don’t forget to ensure that content is laid out in a way that highlights your branding elements such as logo design, icons or symbols. This will make customers remember your brand along with their experience for a really long time.

What do the experts say?

“The name of the game in 2016 is personalization. Marketers will have more opportunities than ever to deliver the exact content that people want when they want it.”Shawn Fitzgerald, VP/Digital Marketing Group at Thomasnet.

Trend#5 – Select social media for content distribution

An article published on Designhill explains that social media has become increasingly popular amongst small businesses, who are using social media hacks to reach out to their customers and reinforce their brand.

In fact, Social Media Examiner’s Industry Report 2015 reveals that 92% of marketers report that social media is important to their marketing mix. In 2016 too, more and more marketers will make use of social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc. for distributing their content.

Thoroughly research the platforms where your target audience hang out and choose the right platforms. Facebook has almost 1.4 billion users and Twitter has 302 million active users. So, use these platforms to distribute content and increase your leads.

Kissmetrics explains that you must define a good distribution schedule for each network and map it out in a simple timeline.

Social sharing times graph for content marketing trends

(Source: Kissmetrics)

What do the experts say?

“No longer can you rely on Facebook to provide free traffic to your website or blog. It’s become just another paid advertising channel. All social networks are now in this game and as social media has become just another media channel, that reality is not going away. You are going to need to adapt.” Jeff Bullas, World’s #1 Marketing Influencer, Strategist & Speaker. CEO at

Trend#6 – Content marketing and SEO go hand in hand

SEO and content marketing complement each other.

Content marketing fulfils the demand created by SEO. The more unique and fresh the content is you create, the better it will be for your search rankings.

Who doesn’t want to be on the first page of any search engine?

An article published on Search Engine Land explains that being found in organic search results andattracting traffic to your site makes it possible to engage people and convert them into fans and customers.

Content marketing trends SEO

(Source: Brafton)

What do the experts say?

“Content is king, and it is expected to play an even bigger role in 2016 digital marketing. Content should be educational, entertaining or enriching, rather than a message centered around a direct sales pitch. A strong strategy of creative, personal, interesting content is eclipsing more traditional areas like SEO management and advertising.” Ben Silverman, Marketing Writer for Brafton.

Trend#7 – Budgets will skyrocket

2016 will see a rise in the investments by marketers in content marketing.

In the past, marketers did not see content marketing as something they could invest in. But as time goes on, content marketing has proven to be one of the most effective methods of driving website traffic. But it takes money to create effective interactive content to draw traffic, generate leads and increase conversions. Therefore, more and more marketers are willing to spend thousands of dollars on their content marketing efforts.

An article published on Hubspot notes that 71% of marketers are getting an increased content marketing budget.

Plus, according to the Content Marketing Institute, 54% B2B marketers will increase their budget for content marketing significantly over the next 12 months.

Infograph for content marketing trends

(Source: Contenthook)

What do the experts say?

“I’d say that things are getting serious: content marketing is not yet a science but a proven methodology for it has emerged and gone are the days when you could simply rely on pure creativity and… luck. While content generation remains key, successful content marketers invest at least as much time and budget in the other parts of the content marketing cycle: planning, distribution as well as analyzing what works and doesn’t.Guillaume Decugis, CEO & Co-Founder at

Wrapping it up

With the beginning of a new year, marketers have already ramped up their content marketing strategies for 2016.

It’s important for you as a marketer to keep up to date with the latest content marketing trends and stand out from the crowd.

I hope that these content marketing trends will help you somehow in achieving new heights for your business in 2016.

Have a great year ahead!

As always, please share your thoughts in the comments, if you enjoyed this post share it on twitter, and never hesitate to hit me up with any questions, critiques, or feedback.


37 Visual Content Marketing Statistics You Should Know in 2016

At the beginning of every year, we like to read through some of the major reports on inbound marketing, content marketing, social media, and online behavior.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, it’s honestly amazing how fast things can change in twelve short months — and 2015 was certainly no exception.

This past year, we’ve seen the importance of visual content emphasized by the changes that occurred across almost every major social network, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. At the same time, both video and infographics have become powerful tools for brands looking to communicate more easily with their readers.

To help you keep pace with these trends, let’s take a look at some statistics that demonstrate the impact visual content has on reach, engagement, and sales.

37 Stats You Should Know About Visual Content Marketing in 2016

General Visual Content Stats

1) Researchers found that colored visuals increase people’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80%. Tweet this stat! (Source)

2) When people hear information, they’re likely to remember only 10% of that information three days later. However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65% of the information three days later. Tweet this stat! (Source)

3) 46% of marketers say photography is critical to their current marketing and storytelling strategies. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: CMO Council

4) 34% of marketers selected visual assets as their most important content, behind blogging (45%) and before videos (19%). Tweet this stat! (Source)

5) 65% of senior marketing executives believe that visual assets (photos, video, illustrations and infographics) are core to how their brand story is communicated. Tweet this stat! (Source)

6) Content with relevant images gets 94% more views than content without relevant images. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: QuickSprout

7) Only 27% of marketers have a process in place to aggregate, organize, and manage the visual assets being used across their marketing teams.Tweet this stat! (Source)

8) 39% of marketers believe that more of their budget should be allocated to the acquisition or creation of compelling visual assets. Tweet this stat!(Source)

9) 73% of content creators plan to prioritize creating more engaging content in 2016, and 55% plan to prioritize creating visual content. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: Content Marketing Institute

Video Stats

10) 51.9% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI. Tweet this stat! (Source)

11) Shoppers who view video are 1.81X more likely to purchase than non-viewers. Tweet this stat! (Source)

12) Using the word “video” in an email subject line boosts open rates by 19%, click-through rates by 65% and reduces unsubscribes by 26%. Tweet this stat! (Source)

13) Midway through 2015, mobile video plays exceeded 44% — up 74% from 2014 and up a whopping 844% since 2012. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: Ooyala

14) Between April 2015 and November 2015, the amount of average daily video views on Facebook doubled from 4 billion video views per day to 8 billion. Tweet this stat! (Source)

15) In July 2015, Periscope users were watching 40 years’ worth of videos every day. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: FastCompany

16) In Q2 of 2015, mobile phones (34%) and tablets (15%) combined for 49% of video ad impressions — up from 38% in Q1 of 2015. Publishers saw PC impressions drop from 62% to 50% in the previous quarter. Tweet this stat!(Source)

17) Syndacast predicts 74% of all internet traffic in 2017 will be video. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: Syndacast

Infographic Stats

18) Eye-tracking studies show internet readers pay close attention to information-carrying images. In fact, when the images are relevant, readers spend more time looking at the images than they do reading text on the page. Tweet this stat! (Source)

19) Infographics are Liked and shared on social media 3X more than other any other type of content. Tweet this stat! (Source)


20) Infographics were the B2B content marketing tactic with the biggest increase from 2014 to 2015, up from 51% to 62%. Tweet this stat! (Source)

21) People following directions with text and illustrations do 323% better than people following directions without illustrations. Tweet this stat!(Source)


Image Credit: NeoMam

22) 60% of marketers predict the use of infographics will increase in 2016 compared to 2015. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: CMO Council

Social Media Stats

23) Visual content is more than 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content. Tweet this stat! (Source)

24) Articles with an image once every 75-100 words got double the number of social shares than articles with fewer images. Tweet this stat!(Source)

25) 71% of online marketers use visual assets in their social media marketing. Tweet this stat! (Source)

26) B2C marketers place more importance on visual content than B2B marketers — and a whopping 40% of B2C marketers say visual content is the most important type of content. Tweet this stat! (Source)

27) Facebook posts with images see 2.3X more engagement than those without images. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: BuzzSumo

28) Buffer reported that for its user base, tweets with images received 150% more retweets than tweets without images. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: QuickSprout

29) The Instagram community has grown to more than 400 million as of September 2015. Tweet this stat! (Source)

30) On Instagram, photos showing faces get 38% more Likes than photos not showing faces. Tweet this stat! (Source)

31) Organic engagement on Facebook more than doubled in 2015, while organic engagement on Instagram almost halved. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: Forrester Research

32) 52% of teens use Instagram, and nearly as many (41%) use Snapchat.Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: Pew Research Center

33) Snapchat has 100 million daily users, 65% of whom upload photos using the app. Tweet this stat! (Source)

34) Women continue to dominate Pinterest: 44% of online women use Pinterest compared with 16% of online men. Tweet this stat! (Source)


Image Credit: Pew Research Center

35) Shopify users referred by Pinterest spend an average of $80 compared to the Facebook referral average of $40. Tweet this stat! (Source)

36) Pins on Pinterest have viral potential: Over 80% of pins are re-pins compared to 1.4% of tweets retweeted. Tweet this stat! (Source)

37) 88% of consumers have purchased a product they pinned, and 49% have purchased 5 or more products they’ve pinned. Tweet this stat!(Source)


Image Credit: Jeff Bullas

Source Hubspot