Marketers Begin Aligning Content With the Buyer Journey

February 12, 2014

This article is included in these additional categories:

Analytics, Automated & MarTech | Content Marketing | Data-driven | Digital | Email | Social Media

EloquaLookBook-Aligning-Content-Buyer-Journey-Feb2014Recent research has brought to light the importance of customizing content to the buyer’s journey stage, something that few B2B content marketers feel adept at doing. A new study [download page] from Oracle Eloqua and LookBookHQ, conducted among the Oracle Eloqua community, suggests that content marketers are trying to get better on this front, though.

Asked how well their sales and marketing teams leverage marketing automation to align content across the buyer’s journey in order to present a more united front in communications, some 49% of respondents said they’re learning how to do so and plan to execute on their within the next 6 months.

Encouragingly, about one-third are even further along the process; 12% are sophisticated in their content alignment and measurement, while another 22% understand how to align content but lack measurement strategy. And only a fraction (3%) have no plans to align content or measure success.

In general, respondents to the study seem to be working on more targeted content. About 6 in 10 say they’re delivering right time/real time content based on behavioral patterns, and 46% are using progressive profiling to build a better picture of their prospects.

Of the multiple trends listed in the survey, though, the most popular is repurposing existing content to make it “snackable,” with 63% doing so. Separately, among those who regularly repurpose content, a plurality say that the average content asset gets repurposed 2-5 times.

Some 44% say that content production is their biggest challenge, whether that be creating enough targeted content (23%), enough content in general (16%), or content that helps the sales team (5%). With quantity a key challenge, it’s not surprising that many have turned to sharing 3rd-party content. Most commonly, marketers are doing so by tweeting links or posting to social networks (56%), while others are sharing links to the third-party content on their websites (41%) or in email campaigns (38%). There are challenges to using third-party content, though, primarily in integrating the content with the marketers’ overall narrative (43%).

Other Findings:

  • Not surprisingly, the study finds that white papers/e-books (76%) and webinars (74%) are the most commonly produced content types.
  • Content is most often produced to support demand/lead generation campaigns (88%), a result consistent with other studies.
  • About 4 in 10 respondents product at least one content asset per week.
  • Fewer than 4 in 10 measure “beyond the click,” capturing time spent with content and feedback.

About the Data: The data is based on 205 survey respondents, a plurality 38% of whom have marketing budgets of at least $1 million.

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