According to a new survey from the Custom Content Council (CCC), U.S. corporations spent a record $47.2 billion on branded content last year. The 10th annual industry “Characteristics Study: A Look at the Volume and Type of Content Marketing in America for 2010” includes the study of electronic and other forms of content marketing for the first time—which explains the significant increase in spending from 2008.
This year’s study reveals that 32% of the overall marketing, advertising and communications budget were dedicated to content marketing. This is the greatest-ever proportion of funds dedicated to content marketing in the 10-year history of this study.
What does this mean?
Marketing organizations recognize the need to communicate regularly with their audience and provide them with meaningful content. Marketing today is not as much about flashy marketing campaigns as it is about constant interaction and sharing of relevant information with a targeted audience. Since today’s consumers make highly educated decisions, marketing organizations need to play a key role in the transfer of knowledge and participate in their consumers’ decision-making process. The more valuable content an organization provides, the more likely they will build and grow a loyal customer base.
How are companies communicating with their audience today?
Custom Magazines/Newsletters Still Strong:
- In 2009, average circulation per issue increased to an all-time high of 48,162 copies per issue.
- The number of unique printed custom publication titles decreased from 1.9 in 2008 to 1.7 in 2009. That said, those titles published increased in both page count and circulation.
Other Forms of Branded Content:
- The most common other forms being used are website updates of articles, blog post and e-newsletters.
- The least common are mobile and e-zines such as flipbooks and interactive PDFs.
What marketing vehicles are companies expecting to add in the future?
While mobile content is not yet widely used, it does rank as the medium that most marketers believe they are likely to invest in next year. Beyond that, marketers plan to invest in video and audio.
Custom Content Council Executive Director Lori Rosen said, “As more and more companies explore custom content solutions across print and digital platforms, we will continue to see an increased financial investment. Things are changing rapidly—the data shows just how much change the industry has undergone in 12 months-and we haven’t even touched social media surface. Next year we will be measuring Twitter, Facebook and more. It’s an exciting time to be involved in content marketing in all its forms.”