Like clockwork, we see a resurgence each year of “Top Predictions/Trends” lists designed to shake up every industry. These are promoted as the holy grail of readership from the months of October to December as organizations prepare for a new calendar year. The world of content marketing is no different; in fact, the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) got a head start with its list, which Founder Joe Pulizzi released last week. In it, he offers five major content marketing trends to watch for in 2018.
Originally a guest blog for The Forward Marketer
You know what’s concerning? The fact that 89 percent of B2B and 86 percent of B2C companies use content marketing, yet less than half are clear on what an effective content marketing program looks like. For the least successful of these organizations, this number drops to as low as 13 percent.
Are you realistic about what content marketing can achieve? It’s a simple question, yet not one most business leaders consider. Even brands with consistent output, big budgets and ample leadership can self-sabotage with impractical ideas of what content marketing efficiency, progress and success look like.
Authored by Guest Blogger, Carrie Majewski
A few years ago, I believed in the power of mentors—of scouring the land for the brightest, most passionate, exceedingly selfless mentors who could impart pearls of career wisdom. As the best-selling business books and keynoters all contend: find mentors, particularly those in your industry, who you believe have the potential to shape, guide and nourish your career. And, above all else, make sure you are mentor worthy.
Authored by Guest Blogger, Eric Lebowitz
Over the past decade, perhaps no marketing concept has taken a bigger step forward than content marketing. The number of organizations producing content—and the volume of content they are producing—has grown steadily over the years, with many becoming more sophisticated in their approach to content creation. So much so that 62 percent of B2B marketers say their content marketing strategy was somewhat or much more successful in 2016 than it was the previous year.
When asked how content marketing is structured within their organization, 55 percent of B2B business owners said they have a small (or one-person) content marketing team that serves the entire organization.
I get it. Budget balancing and/or a lack of internal bandwidth can make it exceedingly difficult to support a centralized content marketing team. It’s not easy but, if approached correctly, one dedicated person can have as much content marketing impact as a group. The goal, of course, is to graduate to a larger team structure down the road; however, for the time being, it’s possible for companies to not only survive with a one-person team, but thrive.
Preparing for a product launch or seasonal campaign? Trying to spread the word about the charitable event you’re hosting or that accolade you were recently awarded? Looking for exhibitors for an upcoming trade show? Chances are, there’s something going on within your company that needs to be promoted through content.
At the same time, however, you may not have the resources or bandwidth to support every announcement with a sprawling, content-driven campaign. Or, you might not have the time (such is the world of marketing). The good news is that, depending on the announcement, you don’t always need an abundance of content or time to promote it. All you need is the right strategy.
SEO is a tricky thing. It’s something most of us have heard of or even know a thing or two about, but it’s constantly changing. It’s something that’s hard to keep up with, but that doesn’t stop it from influencing the way content is created. Whenever SEO comes up in conversation with clients, I tend to hear the same thing: they know that SEO stands for “search engine optimization” and that the better their SEO is the higher they’ll rank on search engines…but that’s about where they draw the line.
Ask anyone and they’ll tell you what content marketing success is made of: a well-documented strategy, analytical insights, a specific percentage of overall marketing budget…the list goes on. Chances are, “the mind” is often not the first thing to come to mind. But this is undeniably true. Content marketing cannot take root and grow without a solid understanding of what it is, how it works and what’s expected of both management and reporting team members. Similarly, it can’t work without the ability to think outside of the box; there needs to be a certain level of mental awareness and creative thinking.
I’ve been working for myself for about a year and a half now. There are plenty of stark differences between the flexible, self-made environment of an entrepreneur and the rigid ecosystem of corporate; however, I have noticed time and again some notable misconceptions among friends, family and others who don’t know what the self-employed world is like.