Branded content is gaining traction, leading marketers to create quality, custom content that generates awareness and leads.

America’s corporations are turning to content marketing to raise brand awareness, according to a recent survey conducted by ContentWise and the Custom Content Council. Not only did 79 percent of respondents report moving moderately or aggressively toward the development of more branded content, but 52 percent reported outsourcing a portion of content creation.

The survey also revealed that company spending on branded content rose to $1.7 million, compared with $1.6 million two years prior, showing that marketers are beginning to understand the value of content marketing. The average budget dedicated to outsourced content creation this year was $371,364, while companies that exclusively outsourced brand content spent nearly $1 million with agencies. Creating searchable, branded content can illuminate websites in SERP and can also position businesses within greater industry conversation.

Brafton recently reported that marketers should generate custom content to gain high-quality leads and brand awareness as 2012 draws to a close. According to The Content Marketing Institute, 54 percent of B2B marketers will increase spending on content marketing, making it essential for businesses to jump at new opportunities. Businesses that take advantage of new industry trends can expect to see results from content marketing efforts.

Emma Siemasko is a former member of Brafton's editorial team. Emma has experience with blogging, travel writing, industry news, SEO and content marketing. She used to live in South Korea, where she mastered the art of using metal chopsticks.