If you aren’t the boss and your company is not yet actively engaged in content marketing, chances are you are going to need to convince someone higher up the chain that this newfangled “content marketing stuff” is actually worth the time and investment.
For the folks that speak “ROI”, this guide from Eloqua will likely be very helpful (warning: optin required to download it) as it goes into plenty of detail on all the metrics that the C-suite could ever want to see.
Below are a few snippets from the report that I liked. Then, below that, I’m going to link you to some interviews that I’ve done with real live folks that are walking, talking proof that content marketing has worked remarkably well for them.
Don’t forget to check out our very own content management system.
According to Eloqua’s findings, a mid-sized organization should expect to spend approximately $12,000 a month and a larger-sized company could expect about $33,000 a month. These costs would be inclusive of the Managing Editor, Chief Content Officer (for larger organizations), the freelancers to actually write the 2 blog posts per week (estimate to cost $150 per post), and $2,500 (mid-sized) or $3,500 (larger-sized) per month for a piece of premium content; which is typically a special report or video, etc…They also included a charge of $1,500 for mid-sized and $2,500 for larger-sized companies for software and hosting.
As the principle objective of content marketing is to drive traffic and conversions, let’s look at Eloqua’s findings for these two metrics.
When compared to the ongoing cost of paid advertising, content marketing shows a clear and substantial benefit; especially when longer time frames are taken into account.
Bencmarks, Budgets, and Trends
Some 86% of B2C marketers in North America are using content marketing, employing 12 individual tactics on average; but, as is the case with B2B content marketing, B2C content marketers are struggling with the effectiveness of their content marketing, according to the findings of the first B2C content marketing study from MarketingProfs and the Content Marketing Institute.
- Among the highlights of the “B2C Content Marketing: 2013 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America” study:
- B2B marketers use social media more often than their B2C counterparts; however, B2C marketers consider it more effective (57% of B2C marketers think social media is effective vs. 49% of B2B marketers).
- On average, B2C marketers use four social media platforms, compared with five used by B2B marketers.
- On average, 28% of B2C marketing budgets are allocated to content marketing, and 55% of consumer marketers plan to increase their content marketing spend.
Real Life Examples
As not every boss is going to be convinced of the merits of content marketing just by looking at just facts and figures, allow me to share some real-life stories from entrepreneurs that I have interviewed here on Bright Ideas.
River Pools and Spas – Marcus Sheridan
Marcus’ story is nothing short of amazing. In 2008, his fiberglass pool and spa business was nearly broke. Prior to then, there were spending $250,000 a year to produce $4M in annual revenue. By 2012, their marketing spend had decreased to $20,000 a year and sales had increased to $4.5M (keep in mind that the pool business was hit very hard during these years, so any increase in sales was amazing in itself). You can watch the full interview here.
Joe Pulizzi – Content Marketing Institute
As the founder of the Content Marketing Institute, Joe knows content marketing extremely well because he’s used it to build his entire company from scratch. Now one of the leading websites in the industry, CMI’s story is well worth listening to. You can watch the full interview here.
Rand Fishkin – SEOMoz
After starting out as an SEO consulting shop in 2004, SEOMoz has fast become one of the leading SEO software companies in the world today. Now with over 100 employees and venture backing, SEOmoz and Rand are proving the ROI on content marketing is extremely attractive. You can watch the full interview here.
Mike Stelzner – Social Media Examiner
Mike started SME back in back in October of 2009 at a time when there were already thousands of bloggers covering the topic. Despite that fact, SME has become the #2 blog in the US for small businesses and boasts a mailing list of just over 190,000 subscribers – all from a very focused content marketing strategy. You can watch the full interview here.
While there is no question that there is effort required to properly execute a well planned content marketing strategy, there is also no question that the benefits are substantial – and the best part is that, unlike with paid advertising, the benefits increase over time, even if your expenditures do not.
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