A major trend in our recent annual content marketing research was an increased emphasis on need and lead generation and conversion measurement among tech marketers. Whether it is a long-term change or a blip caused by pandemic-related pressure remains to be seen.
Let’s take a closer look at this and other findings published today in Tech content marketing benchmarks, budgets and trends with insights for 2021 Sponsored by IDG Communications Inc . The report reflects feedback from 290 content marketers at for-profit tech companies that participated in 11order Content Marketing Institute / MarketingProfs annual survey July 2020.
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Tech marketers report a leap in these digital tactics
While we haven’t seen major changes over the past few years in terms of content types used by tech marketers, 2020 is different: Usage virtual events increments when directly encountering the drop event (no surprises there). Also notable is the jump in live streaming with 33% saying they use it compared to 13% a year ago.
Looking at the data by company size, a few gaps stand out. As the chart below shows, the biggest gap between marketers at major tech companies and all tech respondents is their use of technology. podcasts (+ 11 points), Research report (+13), blank paper (+14) and live video streaming (+ 20).
The majority of all tech marketers already use virtual events/ webinar / online course. That finding shows that – no matter how big or small the company – getting in front of an audience is almost always a priority.
With a focus on using content marketing for demand (as discussed below), that means virtual events with key create, capture, and nurture features have become the vehicle for doing so. .
Focus more on generating demand and leads
When considering content marketing goals of technology marketers, we saw an increase in lead/demand generation— 86% versus 79% the year before.
Reflecting on that goal growth and increase in online events, obviously build virtual relationships and sold already have front seats. (This is consistent with a recent CMI study The results show that 71% of marketers who have used virtual events for 12-month end needs say virtual events are much or slightly more important than in-person events before the pandemic.)
These results don’t suggest tech marketers have given up Brand awareness 89% of tech marketers cited it as a content marketing goal. In fact, that was the top goal in our three most recent annual surveys.
Key conversion metrics for content performance
Many tech marketers can say they have successfully used content marketing to generate demand and leads because more of them monitoring numbers. Measure convert increased to 90% from 81% the previous year. Usage of marketing qualified leads metrics also increased to 77% from 64%.
What’s in store this year?
At the midpoint of 2020, tech marketers were trying to adjust to the changes in the way they do business caused by the pandemic. They turn to more virtual ways to engage audiences – and emphasize the need and lead the generation more. As a result, they place less emphasis on social media measurement, subscriber list building, and PR/media outreach.
Are these lasting changes? Or will priorities change as pandemic restrictions ease? That’s something we’ll be looking at in our next annual content marketing research round.
In the meantime, we may uncover some clues based on tech marketers’ spending expectations 2021. They cited website improvement (67%) and create content (66%) is the expected content marketing investment in their organizations in 2021.
See Benchmarks, Budgets, and Technology Content Marketing Trends with Insights for 2021 for all findings, including:
- Other top performing tech marketers from the group
- How it gets done – team structure and outsourcing
- Content distribution channels
- Action steps for 2021
Cover photo by Joseph Kalinowski / Content Marketing Institute