Content marketing is one of the more recent forms of Internet marketing that’s taken the whole industry by storm. It started with a simple concept — create high-quality written, image, audio, video, or interactive components for a website that visitors will find helpful and informative — and quickly became a cornerstone of Internet marketing as a whole.
Since its creation, the Content Marketing Institute has tracked stats on this marketing niche to discover just how widespread and powerful it is. The results from their studies and polls are clear: If you want your business to profit online, content marketing is essential.
Companies across almost every industry are ramping up their use of content marketing, not to mention their budgets. And, of course, they have some very good reasons.
1. Content marketing can attract up to 75% more qualified leads
This stat alone is enough to convince a lot of business owners and marketing directors to work in content marketing. A 75% leap in qualified leads is huge, especially if you’re still working in the early stages of a business. Just developing, employing, and documenting an effective content strategy can help you practically double your company’s business.
That’s really the underlying theme and benefit of content marketing — it’s way better at attracting qualified leads than most forms of advertising. Customers only interact with it when they’re looking for it online, so it can draw them to your website with their full attention instead of distracting them while they’re watching TV, reading magazines, or driving down the highway.
Basically, the better you make your content, the more likely outside sources will be to link to it. That’ll help your site climb the ranks of Google’s search results so that customers can find you naturally as they search. And then, once they get value out of what created, they’ll help you achieve higher ranking and visibility as well.
Content marketing — like SEO — is a winner’s game, and to play, you need to craft something awesome.
2. SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate
For reference, outbound sourced leads have about a 1.7% close rate.
That means inbound marketing conversion is huge by comparison — closing on a credible lead means more money for your business, and when you can close on 14.6% of the leads that come to your door, you’re preparing your company for some serious expansion.
Plus, when you combine this with 75% more qualified leads, now you’re talking some major numbers.
If you (or any other decision-makers on your team) is on the fence about how content marketing can help your business, add 75% to the number of your current leads, work in the 14.6% close rate, and check that against your average revenue per conversion.
That’s how much money you could be making with a solid content strategy.
3. Inbound leads are more cost-effective than outbound
In North America, inbound leads are incredibly cost-effective, at times only amounting to 1/3 the cost of acquiring outbound leads. In that respect, you’re not only making money with content marketing — you’re also saving it.
One of the problems with outbound marketing is the time that’s wasted on trying to earn the business of clients who just aren’t interested. With salesmen trained to be persistent and bring in revenue any way they can, a final “No” means a salesman just used up a lot of company time without making any money back. That’s cash down the drain.
With content marketing, once your page or blog post is created, it exists until you delete it. So the couple of hours that you spend creating a page that answers one of the most commonly asked questions in your industry will stick around for way, way longer than it took you to create it.
Plus, once it’s active, you can make content on your site stronger by reaching out for external links, sharing it on social media, and providing it to customers as a reference. It’s a soft sales pitch that you can use for the rest of your company’s life to draw traffic to your site and convert customers.
4. 82% of consumers feel more positive about a company after reading content
This is another goliath number that proves the value of content marketing. If you could make 82% of your current audience feel more positive about your brand, what would the results be?
Answers to that question are almost exclusively speculation, but it’s a great way to visualize the non-monetary benefits of content marketing. Even if your lead generation or customer conversion stats aren’t exactly where you want them to be right off the bat, you’re still forging a lasting relationship with your demographic.
Plus, when you make 82% of your audience feel better about your company, the potential for turning a better ROI or earning more sales leads is absolutely there. There’s also the chance that you’ll help build brand awareness through word of mouth and otherwise promote yourself among potential customers.
After all, sometimes your next customers isn’t the person who looks at your site — it’s that person’s friend.
5. Blogging makes you 13 times more likely to enjoy a positive ROI
This stat is borderline mind-blowing. Being 13 times more likely for anything — winning a car, getting struck by lightning, nailing a hole-in-one — is almost unrealistic. This is especially true if you work in marketing, where conversion rate improvements of a fraction of a percent are considered strong.
In the event your jaw didn’t drop after reading that stat, let’s say it another way:
If you were 13 times more likely to win the lottery, would you buy a ticket?
However, it’s important not to take this distinction too far — your blog makes you more likely to experience a high ROI, not necessarily increase that ROI 13 times. Blogging can definitely help your business grow, and you can make a case that it’s essential, but it won’t launch your business into the financial stratosphere overnight.
What the numbers tell us
The bottom line is this: Content marketing is an incredibly effective tactic that can help earn and save money. Beyond that, it comes with the perks of creating an audience for your business and increases the chance that you’ll convert more customers with every site visit.
If you’re not already using content marketing, you owe it to your company to start.
And if anyone needs proof of its success, just send them to this post!
What’s your experience with content marketing? Have you witnessed its positive results first-hand? Let me know in the comments!