Top Content Marketing Challenges: Quality, Distribution, Measurement

In our recent partnership with CMO Council, we set out to discover the top challenges that marketers are facing. The report, which was published last month, dives into those challenges, as well as dozens of other statistics about content intelligence, content performance, and content ROI.

As marketers, we are inundated with content: the strategy of it, the creation of it, the promotion of it, and most importantly, the analysis and testing of it. Through this fog of content, it can be difficult to keep tabs on what’s changing around us, and to recognize trends that are occurring in content marketing best practices. 

Let’s dive into the top three trends that we found in the CMO Council report, along with some tips to keep in mind when considering the challenges.

Marketers Aren’t Sure If Content is Engaging Their Audience

The first challenge is a common one, no matter what type of content you’re creating or which industry you’re creating it for. Once you’ve created your content and put it out into the world, how can you truly measure engagement? How can you tell if your audience is gaining value from what you’re providing?

Without insight into audience engagement, companies are creating either too much content, or not enough content of the right type, which leads the overall content strategy to fall flat. CMO Council refers to this as the “shotgun” approach—marketing to an audience with a high volume of content that isn’t necessarily resonating with them.

To avoid this common challenge, we suggest adding interactivity into your content marketing mix. With interactive experiences like calculators, assessments, and infographics, you’ll be able to pinpoint exactly what elements your audience is engaging with, allowing you to tailor your content for that specific audience in the future.

It’s Increasingly Difficult to Create High-Quality Content with Limited Budgets

Although content marketing budgets have steadily increased over the past several years, so too have the requirements for content to be considered “quality,” making it increasingly difficult to create content that’s both cost-effective and valuable to your audience. 

The report found that 43 percent of marketers said that some content hits the mark with customers and drives value, while other content misses and wastes budget. Budget is also a top factor in determining content strategy, followed by time and leadership requests. 

So how do you combat this? Consider repurposing content to extend the life of high-value pieces that were costly to produce, such as a research report or lengthy white paper. Include repurposing into your content strategy and editorial meetings, and always be scanning for opportunities to transform a more robust content asset into multiple assets, driving further value and reserving budget for other tools or resources.

It’s Not Easy to Prove True Content ROI

While vanity metrics like page views and traffic are still important, it’s becoming harder to truly prove content ROI. 

CMO Council’s report suggests following up with research to understand your customer’s needs and pain points, and to discover which of your content pieces are connecting with them. Here, interactive content also plays an important role, as you can measure specific content elements and how they are performing, in addition to more basic metrics.

Turning a Creative Eye on Content ROI

Interested in learning more about these marketing challenges, along with the latest industry data?

Featuring commentary from marketing professionals at top companies like ABC, Autodesk, The Economist, and Fast Company, the CMO Council report is free for download here

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