Social Media Leads Content Marketing: New Survey Reveals

Content marketing is a new and emerging marketing strategy that is quickly becoming a major consideration to be included in a companies online marketing toolkit as the traditional methods of marketing become less efficient and so more costly.

The web allows companies and brands to showcase their expertise and thought leadership through content marketing with minimal friction online that can be spread through different mediums and channels at a lower cost.

So what is content marketing?

A definition by Wikipedia Content marketing is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation or sharing of content for the purpose of engaging current and potential consumer bases. In contrast to traditional marketing methods that aim to increase sales or awareness through interruption techniques, content marketing subscribes to the notion that delivering high-quality, relevant and valuable information to prospects and customers drives profitable consumer action. Content marketing has benefits in terms of retaining reader attention and improving brand loyalty better than traditional marketing techniques”

Junta 42 ( A content marketing focused company)  defines it this way Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.

A new survey from Junta 42 reveals the key content marketing survey findings:

  • According to the survey, content marketing spending comprises 33% of the total marketing budget (up 11% from 2008)
  • Smaller companies spend more than 2x that of larger companies on content marketing
  • Marketers are increasing their focus on mobile content solutions
  • Only 7% of marketers are spending less on content in 2010

The top 7 content products that are being used and should be included in your marketing plans are

  1. Social Media
  2. e-Newsletters
  3. Blogs
  4. White Papers
  5. Article Marketing
  6. Case Studies
  7. Online Videos

This shows that marketers are leveraging new media content products more than ever – nearly 3/4 are leveraging content through social media and a majority are tapping into blogs and enewsletters. White papers and case studies continue to be mainstays in the content marketing portfolio.

What is rather revealing is the continuing marketing importance of email marketing (e-Newsletters) in the marketing mix with a ranking at number two. This continues to affirm its importance that I highlighted in a previous post “Do Marketers Prefer Social Media or Email Marketing?”

The other content medium to watch is mobile content as the Smart Phone and faster mobile broadband speeds allow a more meanginful experience for mobile users as well as the emerging Gen Y users that consume more and more content on the move via their mobile phones.

So is content marketing in its different mediums and channels part of your marketing plans for 2010?


  • johnakerson

    Brian Solis makes a point on his blog this morning that Social media Optimization is the new SEO… To me, the funny thing is that it is NOT. It is just one component. I think what we want is discovery optimization… Discovery is an ocean, and social media is just one branch of one river that leads to the ocean. SEO is another, advertising is another, word-of-mouth is another… Every method that customers traditionally use to find – to DISCOVER – are valid rivers. Every method of impacting or producing content that potential customers can use to discover is a river. If we want our oceans to get the most traffic, we should optimize the all of them. There should be optimized video feeds, blogs, micro-blogs, events, magazines… Essentially everything that you mention here, Jeff, needs to be optimized for the content streams to produce the greatest flow.

    Admitting that I have a problem is the first step to recovery, and the problem (I think) is that that there is no way to optimize EVERYTHING. Time, Money, Skill, Knowledge, and Objectives are all barriers to optimizing everything.

    Your charts above are great for showing what marketers think they should know. My question is… WHY? Are they the most EFFECTIVE? IS there data to suggest that in a world of limited resources, that top 7 content products (Social Media, e-Newsletters, Blogs, White Papers, Article Marketing, Case Studies and Online Videos) are going to produce the greatest return on investment? Will those 7 contents produce the greatest flow? Are they the most effective at optimizing how customers can find a product or service, or provider? I don’t really have answers… but I think the questions are very important.

    Take care, Jeff – Great blog, as usual.

  • Kimmo Linkama

    John raises two very important points:

    1. There is no way to optimize EVERYTHING.
    2. WHY? Are they the most EFFECTIVE?

    I’m constantly amazed at how information is published about what marketers intend to do vs. what they should do.

  • Joe Pulizzi

    Hi Jeff…thanks for the shout out on the survey. Keep spreading the word!

  • Randy Duermyer

    @johnakerson your comment is spot on and I love the ocean analogy.

    • @raydennis

      Likewise will be ‘borrowing’ that one

  • Lateef

    I’m taking a contrarian view of content marketing for marketing my start-up. I don’t plan on writting whitepapers and I’m reluctant to even blog. Why? Too much competition. Now that everyone has a printing press in their pocket, the volume of content is ramping up faster than audiences can consume it.

    Instead, I think Right-Time marketing will be the real future. Technologies that position trusted messages in front of prospects will most likely be a much more efficient way to market products and services.

    • Trevor Spinks

      While I agree that content is being created faster than it is being read, this alone should not be a reason to skip blogging and whitepapers. Especially at a startup (like the one I am a, Arkayne) with your content marketing campaign you should focus on creating content that will educate current and prospective customers. These are the white papers and blog posts that people are not creating at rates faster than anyone could keep up with, and they will be invaluable to educating people on your space. When done correctly, content marketing can also be “right-time” marketing because when consumers are educating themselves, your articles are the ones that show up on search, getting your message in front of them.

  • Brian Haugen

    This is an incredibly pragmatic and useful post. I totally agree that email newsletters are too often forgotten about as all the new media channels continue to grow, even though email is proven to work!

    I’ve also noticed a lot of people forgetting how well content marketing mixes with social media. Great content can pay off exponentially if you take the time to execute a good strategy. My post on How to Do Social Media Content Marketing Like a Rock Star shows exactly how that can be done:


  • Jeff Bullas

    Thanks for your comment..Google is constantly tweaking its algorithms and the major social media channels are treated with higher importance than in the past. Content loaded onto channels such as YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook appear high in search results and as such provide a great way to spread your content and brand presence and be “Found Online”. So article sites do help with this but not as much as a the top social media platforms for more on this read

  • Jeff Bullas

    Thanks for your kind comment Nataly I will check it out :).

  • Anonymous

    Though I still prefer email marketing as means even my competitions are “spams” I believe audience are getting smarter nowadays.True, social media is highly recommended but in developing trust and sincerity I go for email, it does a personal touch and creating a special connection to your prospective clients. Being “FREE” is not always good in presenting your products, though it helps in ranking, but in building relationship, thumbs down.

    Anne Patrick

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