New research on the habits and successes of B2C marketers using content marketing in North America reveals a strong commitment to the discipline. It also shows most content marketers are struggling with the same issue: having enough time to create consistent, high-quality content.
Last week the B2C Content Marketing 2017: Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America by Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs was released. It showed widespread participation with 86% of B2C marketers in North America using content marketing.
Content marketing working better all the time
Nearly all of them are experiencing positive benefits, with 97 per cent reporting success with their content marketing initiatives. The two most popular reasons for increased success are attributed to higher-quality, more efficient content creation (77 per cent) and strategy development (71 per cent).
But if you dig a little deeper into the research, you get a sense of an exhausted cohort who largely knows what they need to do but doesn’t have the resources to do it well. An amazing 49 per cent of the respondents have a small or one-person content marketing team servicing the entire organisation.
Strategy and time holding content marketers back
When asked directly about what’s holding them back from further success, 49 per cent say strategy issues, 48 per cent say lack of time and 37 per cent say content creation issues. That’s alarming because almost all of them, 94 per cent, say they’re going to create the same amount or more than last year.
More content, more spending
So what is the plan? Eighty-one per cent say they’re going to increase spending or at least keep it at the same levels. On average, 26 per cent of the marketing budget is being spent on content marketing.
And yet, none of the tools mentioned in the research aid in content creation.
Content marketing conundrum: It’s working but . . .
So that’s the conundrum. If you’re working in a B2C content marketing environment, you’re seeing success. You’re spending a lot of resources – time and budget – into creating measurable results for your organisation. That’s only going to increase next year. But you’re also probably working alone or with a very small team.
So how can a company become more efficient at creating high-quality, cost-effective content? How can they be sure they’re implementing a strategy and measuring, reporting and refining that strategy with only a small team? How can they do it without using any tools?
The answer is quite simple: outsource your content production to experts. Immerse yourself in the strategy. Give yourself time to analyse, measure and report on effectiveness. Focus on what your audience wants but don’t put the added burden of becoming an expert at content creation.
Is outsourcing your content marketing a good idea?
Here’s why it makes sense to outsource your content marketing production.
- You probably already have a full-time job.
- If you don’t have experience in content creation, the quality you produce as a beginner might not represent your brand.
- Even the best creatives usually stick to one or two mediums. Unless you have a very large department and big budgets, you’ll be limited in how much you can produce on your own.
- It’s unlikely you’ll have all the processes and workflows in place to guarantee quality and efficiency.
- You’ll be much slower than someone who spends all day, every day, working on content creation. If you extrapolate the true cost of in-house content creation vs. outsourced, you’re almost certain to get a much higher quality product at a lower price – and you’ll have time to focus on other things.
You might be surprised to know even creative types outsource work for efficiency and quality reasons. When I was running Global Copywriting, it wasn’t unusual for me to find a writer with different strengths and talents than I have. For example, it could take me two days to write a direct mail letter. I could outsource that work to someone who could do it in half a day and guarantee better results. It was a win for me and a win for my clients. Why wouldn’t I do that?
Here’s another way to think about it. A content production agency will have a team of people who have distinct roles and responsibilities. They’re used to working in a team with quality checkpoints and creative collaboration. When you outsource, you have access to creative professionals with the following professions:
- graphic designers
- social media marketers
- web developers
- SEO marketers
So next time you’re feeling overwhelmed by all you want to do and the lack of time to do it, why not consider outsourcing? It’s a great way to improve quality and efficiency of your content production while reducing costs.
See the entire report here:
If you’d like help in the content creation side of your business, please give us a call. We’re experts on a variety of content production and love nothing better than smashing out awesome content on behalf of our clients. Like what you’ve read? Sign up to the Lush newsletter for fortnightly advice to help you market your business better, tips from our video production gurus, and a podcast or two from our favourite podcasting team, Brand Newsroom. In the meantime, you might enjoy these:
Michele Linn on the 2017 CMI B2B Trends Report [podcast with show notes]