By Joe Pulizzi published December 5, 2011

2012 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends [Research Report]

Last year, the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs published a popular study on B2B content marketing and repeated the research survey this year to see how the field is changing.

Here is B2B Content Marketing: 2012 Budgets, Benchmarks and Trends.

It was no surprise to us that content marketing remains a top priority for marketers in 2012. Many of the statistics and results are consistent with what we saw last year:

  • 9 out of 10 organizations market with content marketing.
  • On average, B2B marketers employ eight different content marketing tactics to achieve their goals.
  • Marketers, on average, spend over a quarter of their marketing budget on content marketing (see the full budget breakdowns in the report).

But, we’re seeing a lot of changes as well.

Increased adoption rate for some tactics

Just as we found in last year’s study, article posting and social media (excluding blogs) are the most popular tactics and are currently used by 79% and 74% of B2B marketers, respectively.

B2B Content Marketing Tactics 2012

But, there are a number of tactics that are seeing an increased adoption rate:

  • Blogs (27% increase)
  • White papers (19% increase)
  • Videos (27% increase)

Marketers are using social media more frequently

As we saw last year, Twitter is the most popular social media channel with content marketers. Every social media channel is seeing increased adoption, often by 15-20%:

  • YouTube: 47% increase
  • LinkedIn: 39% increase
  • Twitter: 35% increase
  • Facebook: 30% increase

Content marketers are becoming more effective

Last year, we asked marketers to assess how confident they consider their usage of each tactic to be.  This year it’s clear that marketers are more confident in how well they are using these tactics — around just about every tactic. While in-person events and webinars are still seen as the most effective tactics, on average, the following ranked notably higher in perceived effectiveness compared to our last report:

  • Blogs: 45% increase
  • Case studies: 32% increase
  • Videos: 36% increase
  • Webinars/webcasts: 25% increase

Content marketing spend is increasing

Rising confidence in the effectiveness of content marketing seems to be spurring marketers
 to dedicate more budget to this strategy. On average, 60% of respondents indicate that they plan to increase their content marketing budgets over the next 12 months. This compares to 51% of marketers who were planning to increase their budgets in the previous study.

More marketers are outsourcing 

As content marketing budgets increase, so too does the percentage of companies that outsource. Last year, only 55% of marketers used outsourcing in some capacity. This year, 62% of B2B marketers use a mix of insourced and outsourced content.

Download the full report: B2B Content Marketing: 2012 Benchmarks, Budgets & Trends.

What findings in the research are most interesting to you? Let us know in the comments!

Author: Joe Pulizzi

Joe Pulizzi is the Amazon bestselling author of Killing Marketing, Content Inc. and Epic Content Marketing, which was named a “Must-Read Business Book” by Fortune Magazine. His latest book is The Will to Die, his debut novel. He has founded three companies, including the Content Marketing Institute (CMI), and has launched dozens of events, including Content Marketing World. In 2014, he received the "Lifetime Achievement Award" by the Content Council. His podcast series, This Old Marketing with CMI's Robert Rose, has generated millions of downloads from over 150 countries. He is also the author of The Random Newsletter, delivered to thousands every two weeks. His Foundation, The Orange Effect, delivers speech therapy and technology services to children in over 30 states. Follow him on Twitter @JoePulizzi

Other posts by Joe Pulizzi

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