You might ponder your current role and future career moves.
You may wonder how AI fits in the year ahead.
You may need to work on your content marketing budget and wonder how the last 12 months should influence your resources in 2024.
Get help with those reflections and more to improve your strategy in the coming year with these curated statistics from CMI’s 2023 research.
Content marketing careers: What the statistics say
Our second annual Content Marketing Career & Salary 2024 Outlook explored the use of generative AI tools at work, employee engagement, and career paths.
How much content marketers get paid
- The average annual compensation for a U.S.-based content marketer working full-time for an employer is $112,000. (Higher average salaries exist for men, directors and above, baby boomers, and those working in major urban centers.)
- 54% of all content marketers feel they should be paid more. (Over half of Gen Z [52%], millennials [57%], and Gen X [51%] feel this way. Only 42% of baby boomers say they should be paid more.)
How content marketers use AI
- Nearly half of content marketers use AI to brainstorm new topics, and 46% use it to research headlines and keywords. More than one-third (36%) use AI tools for writing, though many feel conflicted about the idea.
- 62% of content marketers are concerned that AI will result in less respect for skilled writers/editors.
Among their other worries about generative AI: writing/editing viewed as a commodity (55%), lower compensation for writers/editors (46%), fewer jobs for content marketers (45%), and larger workload for writers/editors (17%). Seventeen percent are not concerned.
- Learning how to work with new technologies (such as AI) was the most popular skill of interest cited by content marketers (48%) – up two points from the previous year – followed by improving data analytics/data science skills (42%), and leadership skills (42%).
How often content marketers are engaged at work
- 54% of content marketers say they’re often engaged at work. (Millennials are least likely to say they’re often engaged – just 49% – compared with 62% of Gen X and 62% of baby boomers.
- The most popular drivers of engagement are doing meaningful work (81%), positive co-worker relationships (78%), and recognition for my work (71%). Other attributes include manager relationships (58%), sense of belonging at work (56%), and professional development opportunities (55%).
Content marketers are willing to explore new opportunities
- 31% say they are actively or highly interested in looking for a new role – three points higher than the previous year. However, those who say they seldom or never feel engaged at work are almost twice as likely to say they’re looking for a new job.
- Only 25% of content markets say they see a clear path for advancement at their company. The rest think they must leave their job to advance their career or don’t see any path for growth in content marketing.
What to do for your career
If you suspect you’re underpaid, start by researching what others in your position make, as Ann Gynn advises in Content Marketers: Here’s How To Ask for (and Get) the Salary You Want.
In addition to CMI’s salary research, this salary tool from Creative Circle shows average pay by job title and location. Another research option: Check the salary bands listed for open content marketing jobs.
Once you have a better sense of how your pay stacks up, start preparing a case for a raise based on your recent accomplishments. Ann suggests you consider how your role has changed, the business impact of your work, and any positive feedback you’ve gotten from others at work. Then, decide what you’ll ask for (and alternatives you might suggest if a salary increase isn’t possible).
What to do for your team
If your organization lacks a content career ladder, collaborate with your HR partners to develop one. For a head start, use the framework Robert Rose shared in this article: How To Create a Content Marketing Career Path (So You Don’t Lose Your Star Talent).
Also, get ready for requests for raises. Inflation and the increasing importance of content marketing in organizations (more on that in the next section) make these requests almost inevitable.
Advocating for your team may help you keep them around. Recent research from the Society for Human Resources Management found inadequate compensation is the main factor in employee turnover. If you can’t afford an adequate raise, think about what else you can do to recognize and reward employees. Consider options like additional days off, participation in high-profile projects, or a change in title.
Finally, spend time preparing to answer questions about pay equity. With more states adopting salary transparency laws, employees may talk more openly with each other about their pay.
A recent Harvard Business Review article shares how to discuss salary bands even when you don’t have control over your team’s salaries. Use salary benchmarking to:
- Keep up with pay in the marketplace.
- Know what your competitors are offering and how much other firms are willing to pay the candidate.
- Ensure your organization pays fair salaries.
- Set appropriate ranges for salary negotiations.
If you’re hiring next year, don’t take a one-size-fits-all approach. Tailor your offers to what matters most to the candidate. Both women and men prioritize a higher compensation package and flexible working hours or locations when looking for new opportunities. (Although more women than men prioritize flexible working.) Women place a higher priority on a cultural fit/team with shared values, whereas men prioritize meaningful work more highly.
B2B content marketing statistics for 2024
This year’s B2B research exposes where content marketers need additional support from their organizations. It also shows how content types and the use of social media platforms are changing and how top performers stand out from their peers.
Content marketing challenges
- 28% of B2B marketers say team members resigned in the last year, 20% say team members were laid off, and about half (49%) say they had new team members acclimating to their ways of working.
- 72% of B2B marketers use generative AI tools for content-related tasks. However, 61% say their organization lacks guidelines for doing so, and 8% are unsure. Thirty-one percent say they have guidelines.
- The most frequently cited content creation challenge is creating the right content for the audience (57%). This is a change from many years when creating enough content was the most common challenge.
- The most frequently cited non-creation challenge, by far, is a lack of resources (58%). Among the other challenges: aligning content with the buyer’s journey (48%), aligning content efforts across sales and marketing (45%), workflow issues/content approvals process (41%), accessing subject matter experts (38%), keeping up with new technologies (34%), lack of strategy (25%), keeping up with privacy rules/regulations/compliance (19%), and technology integration (15%).
- As for the most common challenge of scaling content production, almost half of content marketers (48%) say not enough content repurposing.
Types of content and social media platforms
- 94% of B2B marketers use short articles/posts, followed by videos (84%) and case studies/customer stories (78%). The same percentage of marketers (53%) find case studies/customer stories and videos to be effective.
- Nine in 10 B2B marketers use social media platforms (organic) to distribute content, 79% use blogs, and 73% use email newsletters. In-person events and webinars are used by 56% and produce the best results, according to marketers.
- 84% of B2B marketers say LinkedIn provides the best value among the social media platforms they use.
- 32% of B2B marketers say they decreased their X use last year (10% increased, 31% stayed the same, and 27% don’t use. While 20% decreased their use of Facebook, 22% increased their presence, 38% stayed the same, and 20% didn’t use it. On Instagram, 10% decreased their use, 32% increased their use, 28% stayed the same, and 31% didn’t use it. With YouTube, 9% decreased their use, 32% upped their use, 39% stayed the same, and 20% didn’t use it. On LinkedIn, 72% increased their use, and 24% stayed the same, with 2% decreasing their use and 2% not using the platform. Most B2B marketers aren’t on TikTok (81%), while 10% increased their use, 7% decreased, and 10% increased their use.
- 19% of marketers say they use TikTok – more than double the previous year.
Content management technology
- Only 31% of B2B marketers say their organization has the right content management technology. Thirty percent say they have the technology but aren’t using its potential, and 29% say they haven’t acquired the right technology. Ten percent are unsure.
- 45% of B2B marketers say it’s likely their organization will invest in additional content management technology in 2024. Thirty-two percent say they are unlikely to invest in more tech, while 23% say they are neither likely nor unlikely.
Metrics and goals
- The five most common metrics to assess content performance are conversions (73%), email engagement (71%), website traffic (71%), website engagement (69%), and social media analytics (65%).
- The most common challenge B2B marketers have while measuring content performance is integrating/correlating data across multiple platforms (84%).
- 58% of B2B marketers say content marketing helped them generate sales/revenue in the last 12 months, up from 42% the previous year. Among the other goals:
- Brand awareness (84%)Demand/lead generation (76%)Subscriber/audience/lead nurturing (63%)Loyalty growth with existing clients/customers (50%)Subscribed audience growth (40%)
- Reduced customer support cost (10%)
- 28% of B2B marketers say their organization is extremely or very successful with content marketing; these top performers most often attribute their success to knowing their audience (79%). Among the other factors:
- Content that aligns with the organization’s objectives (68%)
- Effectively measure and demonstrate content performance (61%)
- Thought leadership (60%)
- Collaboration with other teams (55%)
- Documented strategy (53%)
- B2B content marketing top performers are supported by leaders who understand the work they do, are more likely to have the right content management technologies, have better communication across organizational silos, and do a better job of measuring content effectiveness. Here’s how the characteristics break down among the most successful, least successful, and all:
- Strongly agree that the leader they report to understands the work they do: Most (74%), least (23%), all 54%.
- Organization has the right technology to manage content across the organization: Most (47%), least (11%), and all (31%).
- Faced with a lack of communication across organizational silos: Most (28%), least (51%), and all (40%).
- Agree that organization measures content performance effectively: Most (77%), least (17%), and all (46%).
They also use content marketing successfully to:
- Generate demand/leads: Most successful (87%), least successful (55%), and all (76%).
- Nurture subscribers/audiences/leads: Most (78%), least (42%), and all (63%).
- Generate sales/revenue: Most (75%), least (35%), and all (58%).
- Grow a subscribed audience: Most (54%), least (38%), and all (40%).
Content marketing budgets and investment for 2024
- 45% of B2B content marketers expect their content marketing budget to increase in 2024.
- 69% of B2B marketers think their organization will increase investment in video in 2024, followed by thought leadership content (53%) and in-person events (47%). Among the other areas:
- Paid advertising (43%)
- Online community building (33%)
- Webinars (33%)
- Audio content (25%)
- Digital events (21%)
- Hybrid events (11%)
How to apply these stats to your content strategy
Has content marketing become more critical to your organization as it has for so many? Do budget increases support that? If not, talk with your department head about content marketing’s impact and any recent or planned changes to its scope.
Why You Struggle to Prove Content ROI – and How To Settle Up (or Down) suggests how to explain content marketing to others in your company, set appropriate goals, redefine your content marketing strategy, and invest in an attribution model.
You also might want to review what you measure and how you present the results. Get tips from a variety of marketing experts on how to look at measurement differently, benefit from the increasing role of AI, and implement specific changes here: Overwhelmed by Marketing Analytics? This Advice Will Help Create a Workable Strategy.
Explaining content marketing’s value to the business should help you get the resources (including additional in-house or outsourced staff) to plan, create, distribute, and measure content.
If these statistics convince you to do only one thing, let it be to document (or update) your content marketing strategy. A written, shareable content marketing strategy helps make a case for the resources to support everything you want to do in 2024 – and will keep your team on track as you execute.
Try this accessible process to get the strategy to create yours: How To Write a 1-Page Content Marketing Strategy.
Video content statistics for 2024
Video’s importance in marketing continues to grow across all sectors (B2B, B2C, nonprofit, etc.), as our research shows. Among the key findings:
- 67% of marketers say videos have become more important to their business in the last year.
- The percentage of marketers who say it’s important to create a human connection with video increased to 43% – six percentage points higher than the previous year.
- 69% of marketers say they mostly produce videos in-house.
- 69% say the time required to produce videos is a challenge. Among the other hurdles:
- Generating video content consistently (56%)
- Producing enough video content (52%)
- Human resources required to produce videos (43%)
- Cost to produce videos (40%)
- Producing high-quality videos (34%)
- Expertise required to produce videos (31%)
- Choosing the right distribution channels (14%)
- Other (2%)
- No challenges (3%)
AI use in video
- 18% of marketers use AI to assist with video creation, which means 82% do not. (Thirty-three percent of those who don’t do so plan to within the next year.)
- 69% of those who use AI to assist with video creation use it to create video scripts (the most common use cited by far).
- Just 7% of marketers say their organization uses videos to its full potential.
- 86% say they get average or below-average results with their videos.
- 60% say the thing they would need to get better results with video is a video strategy. Among the other needed video assistance:
- More budget (49%)
- More human resources (46%)
- Better distribution (35%)
- Better on-camera talent/more subject matter expert participation (32%)
- Better measurement (30%)
- More training on best practices (28%)
- Better equipment/production, editing tools (20%)
- Better quality videos (20%)
- Other (4%)
- 64% of marketers expect their video budget to increase by at least 1% in 2023 compared with 2022. (Twenty-seven percent expect an increase of more than 9%, 37% say the rise will be between 1% and 9%. About one-fourth (26%) expect the budget to stay the same, 1% expect a decrease between 1 and 9%, and 2% expect a decrease of more than 9%. Seven percent are unsure.
- 75% of marketers think their organization needs to invest more in video.
How to use these findings
Now is the time to integrate video into your strategy for 2024.
As CMI’s Robert Rose said in the video research findings, here are three ways to commit to video:
- Invest in the process – not just the output. Developing an institutional process and expertise for the creation of videos executed internally or outsourced contributes to success. If you invest more in the process of developing great content, you have more great content from which you can decide what would make great videos.
- Develop measurement plans. Have clear measurement plans that account for more than views or downloads. A high-level metric framework can help justify spending more time and money on video.
- Use the competency of quality to drive quantity. It seems intuitive, but organizations that start slowly and focus on quality have a better capability to produce higher-quality videos in greater quantities later. Get good at creating video first and then focus on how to scale it.
“Remember, video isn’t just a one-off format created in a silo. It should be an integrated and connected part of the broader storytelling operation,” Robert says. “Work it through a process that refines that story for some or all formats. Once you’ve nailed down the story, you can start developing scripts. The ultimate goal is to produce videos with specific objectives, designed for multiple uses, that integrate into the broader brand story.”
After you’ve done that, he says, “That’s when you’re ready for your close-up.”
Make 2024 a strategic success
Statistics alone rarely persuade anyone of anything. But they reinforce the stories you tell.
Use these statistics and related resources to make a case for the resources you need, document a winning content strategy, and decide how big a role content will play in your 2024 plans.
Bookmark this page for easy access to all CMI research studies, and subscribe to daily or weekly alerts to get notified of every new study.
HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT:
- New Research: Will AI Impact Content Marketing Careers and Salaries?
- B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends: Outlook for 2024 [Research]
- Why Most Video Content Fails To Reach Its Full Potential [New Research]
Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute