We All Know Content Marketing Is Important, But How Well Are Businesses Managing It?

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Dr. Dave Chaffey explains why having a Content Marketing Plan in place is vital to success

I believe that to succeed in Inbound Marketing today, Content Marketing should be at the heart of your communications strategy to engage your target audiences. Content Marketing should be the fuel which drives all the key Inbound Marketing techniques across Search, Social Media, Web and Email Marketing. But this isn’t a secret. Content Marketing is now a well-established technique and has become hyper competitive. So, the question is, how do you invest wisely in content marketing to improve your capabilities so that you can compete as content marketing gets even more competitive?

To help answer this question I designed an update on our 2014 research collaboration between HubSpot and Smart Insights asking marketers to review their capabilities in Content Marketing and where they were focusing. This new research, Delivering Content Marketing 2015, helps summarise the state of managing content marketing across Europe.

Content Marketing is Getting Even More Competitive in 2015

The research shows how competitive Content Marketing has become and suggests where you need to focus your activities if you are to compete:

  • Nearly three quarters (71%) of businesses creating more content in 2015 compared to 2014
  • Only 12% feeling they have an optimised content marketing strategy
  • But quality is still a challenge, with 68% still rating their content marketing as basic or inconsistent

To tackle these challenges and get focus I believe you need a solid Content Marketing plan which will help you set the right goals, set-up tracking and prioritise content creation and distribution so it works as an integrated whole. Although this hopefully sounds logical, the research also showed that having an overall content marketing plan isn't as common as you'd expect. To help show what needs to go into a content plan I also updated our 7 Steps to Competing with Content Marketing infographic.
Here are the 7 steps we recommend:

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