Content Marketing Connects Brands to Buyers
Danny Sullivan, founding editor of Marketing Land and Search Engine Land, recently tweeted a picture of an old Web Trends CD. Web Trends is the precursor to Google Analytics, and Danny marveled at the old software and its outdated physical disc delivery method.
One more. This is old Google Analytics. Kids today have no idea the pain of churning log files. Get off my lawn 🙂 pic.twitter.com/kF5bhSQad2
— Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) August 9, 2016
Danny’s nostalgia serves as a good reminder of how far we’ve come in digital marketing in terms of the scope and breadth of data now available to the modern marketer. From web to social to search and beyond, the data and its uses are limited only by the imagination.
In addition to the data available to marketers generated by user activity online, brands can invest in market research to better understand their market, gauge brand awareness, understand user needs and wants, and more. According to an IBISWorld study, more than $20 billion will be spent in the U.S. this year on market research, a significant but necessary investment as business owners gather the insight needed to run their businesses.
Data is a key pillar on which marketers run their businesses and enable informed decision making. According to a Teradata study, 78 percent of marketers now use data systematically to run their businesses. This is true across all disciplines, particularly so in the consumer retail space, where technology and user behaviors change at the speed of light and emerging tech threatens to disrupt buying behavior on what seems like a weekly basis. At the end of the day, the arrow will only fly as true as it is aimed, and it’s data that enables intelligent aiming.
Content Marketing Connects Brands to Buyers
In addition to major changes in the data now available to brands, marketing has evolved such that content marketing is now the de facto way brands connect with consumers.
Consider the following:
- Research firm IDC reports that CMOs at the largest technology companies say building out content marketing as an organizational competency is the second most important initiative, behind only measuring ROI.
- By 2017, 51 percent of companies will have an executive who is directly responsible for an overall content marketing strategy — e.g., chief content officer, VP or director of content, according to Curata.
- An AMCF study showed 93 percent of respondents said high-quality thought leadership content improves their opinion of a brand …
- … but 94 percent said poor content lowers their opinion of a brand.
It’s clear that content marketing is the way brands must now connect to consumers in a self-service, “research to buy” model. It’s equally clear that a regular cadence of high quality thought leadership content is how brands can establish themselves as experts in a crowded marketplace. The key, however, is that the content must be high quality. Otherwise, the brand actually risks damaging its perception in the market.
NAPCO’s New Research Initiative
As NAPCO Media’s new director of research (NAPCO Media is Total Retail’s parent company), I’m really excited to have the opportunity to work with Total Retail’s audience on both their internal research needs that guide strategy and enable educated decision making, as well as their thought leadership needs to build their brands and generate industry attention.
As a former Forrester Research analyst and in working with clients at my own research firm, Blue Nile Research, I look forward to the opportunity to work with colleagues such as Total Retail’s industry experts, Melissa Campanelli, editor in-chief, and Joe Keenan, executive editor, to design research studies that solve clients’ business problems and build their brands in the marketplace.
Please feel free to reach out. Let’s chat about your research and thought leadership needs.
NAPCO Research leverages Total Retail’s engaged audience, internal subject matter experts and in-house research experts to provide clients with deep research and insight for decision making and thought leadership.
Nathan Safran is Vice President, Research for NAPCO Media. Nathan is a former Forrester Research Analyst with deep experience designing custom research solutions that solve client business problems. Nathan works with the subject matter experts across NAPCO’s brands to design research solutions that leverage NAPCO’s engage audiences and provides deep insight. Nathan is a frequent speaker at industry events and his research has been cited in the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, and Fortune Magazine.