Overall, content marketing is the third most exciting opportunity companies have in 2014, according to the Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing from Adobe and Econsultancy. It’s bested by customer experience and mobile across company and agency representatives polled. However, B2Bs are more optimistic about this marketing channel than any other, including mobile, social or personalization technology.
Business-facing organizations should see great potential in content marketing because it helps them to keep sales pipelines filled. Brands that create original web content can offer prospects samples of data and insights long before they’re ready to purchase. That slow trickle of information might be enough to keep the company top-of-mind as buyers research products and consider their partnership options. When it comes time to make a purchase decision, the companies that have been helpful all along will stand out from competitors as the most obvious choice for a business partner.
At the same time, it makes sense for consumer-facing organizations to anticipate the greatest advances coming from mobile and customer experience channels. Nearly all consumers (97 percent in a 2010 BIA/Kelsey study) admit they use the web at some point of their purchasing journeys to learn about products or find local service providers, which means they’re visiting retailers’ websites before or during their shopping trips. Successful B2C marketing requires those brands to provide great experiences regardless of the channels customers use or when they want information.
Businesses targeting different audiences should certainly focus their efforts on the channels where their customers are active. However, they can’t overlook platforms that have yet to develop into viable marketing outlets. B2Bs may not receive a huge volume of traffic from mobile searches at present, but their target audiences are certainly using smartphones. Likewise, B2Cs may need to develop impressive mobile presences now, but they should also find ways to reach readers with effective web content down the road.
The marketing landscape is rife with exciting opportunities and it’s up to brands to develop campaigns that map to their larger business goals and audience demands.