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Joe Pulizzi’s Content Marketing World Keynote Takes the Pulse of Content Marketing

To the beat of the Ohio State University marching band, Joe Pulizzi came to the stage decked out in a three-piece orange suit. After thanking sponsors and speakers, he welcomed the crowd to Content Marketing World 2012.

Pulizzi kicked off the conference by unveiling some of the results from an upcoming research study, conducted by the Content Marketing Institute in partnership with MarketingProfs, which surveyed 2,400 marketers in North America, Europe and the U.K., and Australia. While the full results will be released in 6 to 8 weeks, here are some of the highlights:

Content marketing tactics

Ninety percent of marketers are doing content marketing in some way, using an average of 5.5 tactics.

Commonly used tactics include:

  • Newsletters: 78%
  • Articles on own website: 84%
  • Social media (not including blogs): 86%
  • In person events: 68%
  • Articles on other websites: 68%
  • Case studies: 63%
  • White papers: 52%
  • Webinars: 51%

These percentages are up between 7 and 15 percent from last year’s survey.

What tactics did surveyed marketers think were most effective? Among the top 11 were:

  1. Videos
  2. Webinars
  3. Email newsletters
  4. Blogs
  5. Articles on own websites
  6. Research reports
  7. eBooks
  8. White papers
  9. Social media (not blogs)

Content marketing and social media

What social media are most popular with content marketers?

  • Facebook: 82%
  • Twitter: 78%
  • LinkedIn: 74%
  • YouTube: 63%
  • Google+: 39%
  • Pinterest: 28% (not available in last year’s survey)
  • Slideshare: 19%


To provide some perspective, Pulizzi also conducted a survey of the 1,000 marketers in the room at Content Marketing World about budgets for content marketing.

Of those in attendance, 75 percent plan to increase their content marketing spends in the next 12 months, 11 percent anticipated their budgets would stay the same, 2 percent planned for a decrease in budget, and 13 percent did not know what their budget plans would be. In contrast, the CMI/MarketingProfs survey found that 54 percent of marketers planned to increase spending this year.

And while attendees anticipated that 31 percent of their marketing budget would be directed toward content marketing (up from 26 percent from last year’s audience survey), only 36 percent of the marketers in the CMI/MarketingProfs survey believe their content marketing is effective. This demonstrates that the majority of content marketers are still struggling to find justification, return on investment, integration, working processes, and, C-level buy-in.

The term content marketing is relatively new: While Pulizzi started using it in 2000, it really didn’t become popular until around 2009. So even though we are all learning and working together. We still have a ways to go.

According to Joe Pulizzi, content marketing is a muscle that we have let atrophy for too long, and now is the time to strengthen it. With more than 1,000 people from more than 20 countries attending CMW 2012 to learn about content marketing, it looks like we’ll be giving those muscles a great workout over the next few days.