On the other hand, if your marketing and sales efforts this year have not met your expectations, you may need to make substantial changes in your demand generation program to make 2013 a success.
If you aren't already using content marketing as a core component of your demand generation strategy, that's one change you need to make in 2013. Research by the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs shows clearly that content marketing has become an essential part of B2B demand generation. According to the B2B Content Marketing: 2013 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends study:
- 91% of B2B marketers are using content marketing in some form
- 33% of B2B marketing budgets are now allocated to content marketing, up from 26% in 2011
- 54% of B2B marketers say they will increase their content marketing spending in 2013
The first thing you must do to create an effective content marketing program is identify what content resources you need. To some extent, of course, this determination will be based on the content distribution channels you choose to use. For example, if you decide to have a company blog, you will obviously need to create blog posts on a regular basis.
Even before you start thinking about content formats, however, you must determine what specific messages your content resources need to communicate. My next three posts will describe a proven process for identifying what content resources your company needs to implement an effective content marketing program.
In my next post, I'll explain how to identify your core customer value propositions. Your value propositions constitute the foundation for your entire content marketing program, so it's obviously critical to get them right at the beginning of your planning process. In the following post, I'll describe how to develop buyer personas. Buyer personas will help ensure that your marketing messages are relevant to potential buyers. The fourth post in this series will describe how to use a content audit to identify where gaps exist in your portfolio of content resources and where your content development efforts need to be focused.
Read Part 2 of the content marketing series here.
Read Part 3 of the content marketing series here.
Read Part 4 of the content marketing series here.