Top 5 Content Marketing Trends You Need to Know for 2015

The research is in and it shows some significant changes are in store for Marketing in 2015 – trends you need to be aware of to succeed:

Trend 1: More Leads = Same Revenue?
IDC reports that it now takes 50% more leads as just two years ago to generate the same amount of revenue.

Why? Your prospects are spending much more time researching, scrutinizing and justifying each purchase, and in turn, significantly longer to move from prospect to customer.

It is unlikely you’ll be able to get a 50% increase in your marketing budget, so you’ll have to smartly improve the reach, targeting, and personalization of each campaign to improve effectiveness and boost response rates.

Trend 2: Marketing Overload
According to research by SiriusDecisions, your prospects now receive 32% more marketing campaigns than just 2 years ago.

And most of the campaigns are White Paper download offers – with the average executive receiving over 50 offers each business day.
White Papers have become the crack cocaine of email marketing.

Although White Papers are still a workhorse, there is a dirty little secret you may not know - the effectiveness of white paper fueled campaigns has been on the decline for the past six years – with the number of responses / downloads declining 5% each year.

So its time to move evolve beyond white papers and leverage new content like videos, dynamic infographics, interactive storybooks and diagnostic assessments / calculators to fuel your more successful marketing campaigns.

Trend 3: Buying by Committee
Buying committees rule the day, with 43% more stakeholders involved in each decision (an average of 8 per purchase). And each of these buyers has a different set of challenges, concerns, and value perspective.

One size-fits-all content doesn’t cut it when there are so many different perspectives involved in the decision making process.

You have to develop, or better yet personalize content for each stakeholder in an environment where each buyer expects and requires personalization.

Trend 4: Skeptics Rule
Today’s buyer has heard it all before, and they are wary.

A new study by The Economist bears this out; with 71% of business execs saying content from companies turns them off when it seemed more like a sales pitch than providing valuable information. At the same time, the survey found that 93% of marketers and sales reps continue to focus their content directly to products and services.

Buyers most trust content that is not product but value centric, recommended by peers, and authored by a third party. Unfortunately only 13% said they view content that is created directly by a vendor as credible.

It’s time to move away from the sales pitch, to instead leverage more 3rd party provocative and consultative content.

Trend 5: Short Attention Span Theater
Today, you only have 8 seconds to get a prospect’s attention. Lower by 1/3 from just a decade ago, and less of an attention span than a Goldfish (9 secs).

As attention deficit has increased, your content marketing has likely gone the opposite direction.  The typical white paper is now more than 10 pages according to IDG, lengthened to address a wider range of buyers, vertical industries, and more complex solutions.

Studies indicate even 5 pages might be too long today. And the content, its just too text heavy for today’s more visually stimulated audience.

You have to get buyer’s attention more quickly, by making your content marketing more visual, simplifying and streamlining your messaging, and reducing content length.

Think about how you could tune the visual storytelling and value messaging based on buyer roles, industry, location and challenges, producing more interesting and effective content dynamically for each selling situation.

The Bottom-Line

In 2015 your prospects are more difficult to reach, engage and motivate than ever before. They’ve changed, and your content marketing has to advance to keep pace:
  • Instead of more, think better
  • Instead of text, think simple drawings, infographs and video
  • Instead of product-centric, think insights and value
  • Instead of vendor-developed think 3rd party credibility
  • Instead of one-size-fits-all, think dynamic personalization.

In order to be effective in 2015 consider investing less in traditional white papers and more in video, dynamic infographics, interactive storybooks, diagnostic assessments and challenge / value calculators for success in 2015.


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