Recently, we at Sawfish Online were asked to participate in a content marketing survey from contently.com. As much as I (Larry) wanted to really be a wise guy and skew the numbers for the sake of getting giggles out of the 601 marketers in the survey, I didn’t. Actually, we took it pretty seriously because, after all, content marketing is a big thing we do here at SawfishOnline.com.
Before I get to the numbers just handed out, let’s just say when Forbes declared “Content is King” for 2012, it was just the beginning. Since then, content, and original content that is unique, personal, personable, engaging, attractive, and, most importantly, good, drives almost everything in business. When I say “almost everything in business,” it’s about the website, customer and user experience, interactions with customers and so on. Basically, if your business doesn’t have a good website with good content with a good customer and user experience with good interactions with the customer to make them feel noticed and special, then you’re business if going to struggle to say the least.
Yes, the numbers. The findings of the survey were interesting but not very surprising. I’ll hit some highlights for you and then give you the link to the actual study in case you want to peruse the details.
Here’s the newest trend: disruptive banner ads are gone
Creating good, unique content doesn’t come easy or fast, either.
The best types of content for ROI are still sort of a jump ball, and there’s a pretty good explanation for that which I’ll get into in a few minutes.
What’s really interesting is, “I don’t know” came back in the middle of the pack with 17.77% of marketers saying what content is best for ROI. “I don’t know” also scored 17.44% when asked what content is more effective licensed or original (original won overwhelmingly with 69%). When you’re asking perhaps $100/hour or even more for your content marketing business, “I don’t know” isn’t good.
For me, personally, at Sawfish Online, how to measure ROI is the absolute hardest thing to do. It’s also the most expensive since any software worth its reputation is going to cost some real dollars. And then trying to learn it? Oh man, I’d rather go back and sit through an entire semester of Psych 101. Forget it!
Which leads me to my final thought: you can’t push a button and say “there you go, there’s your ROI.” Nope. Content marketing ROI is much like building a skyscraper. It’s going to take time, money, intense thought and planning, patience, creativity when you least expect it, and persistence. And when you do content and do it right, the marketing is almost like it’s on autopilot, and the ROI will be a loyal audience that enjoys a long-lasting, two-way relationship.
You can read the entire content marketing survey here: bit.ly/sawfishonlinecontentroi
Sorry for the rather long post, but there's a lot of important information to think about and digest. I hope you're finding joy so far this holiday season. Now go deck the halls.
Larry is a content marketing professional, an experienced copywriter, avid fisherman, amateur sailor, teller of kinda funny jokes, pancake connoisseur and an overall OK guy who founded Sawfish Online.