TORONTO, ON--(Marketwired - December 09, 2015) - Marketwired, a leader in news distribution and social communications for PR, IR and marketing professionals, recently surveyed PR and marketing practitioners to find out how content fits into their communications programs and how to best support its customers with tools and knowledge to drive business impact with content marketing. Survey results reinforce the growing importance of content marketing: seventy-nine percent (79%) of survey respondents currently have a program in place, and the majority plan to increase (64%) or maintain (22%) efforts next year. Results of the survey were published today in the original infographic, "Will You Be A #ContentMachine in 2016?"
Experience the interactive Multimedia News Release here.
Survey highlights and insights:
- PR and marketing professionals are using an expanding range of content in their communications: blog posts (55%), photos (29%) and news releases (24%) were identified as the content used most frequently by respondents. Newsletters, video, infographics and white papers were also named, along with case studies, webinars and tip sheets.
- A notable 61% of respondents said they are using influencers and brand advocates to help amplify their content, reach new audiences and increase engagement. For those who answered "no" to using influencers, they commonly cited budget and/or resource restrictions and not knowing where to start with an influencer program as their primary challenges.
- Half of respondents use visuals on a weekly basis to support their content efforts, and an impressive 30% do so daily. As consumers increasingly look for relevant and engaging multimedia content, it's no surprise that PR and marketing pros are answering the call by producing and sharing photos, video, infographics and other visual content with their audiences.
- PR and marketing pros are taking advantage of opportunities to connect with and engage their audiences across multiple platforms. Twitter (75%), Facebook (73%) and LinkedIn (63%) are the most commonly used social channels for sharing visual content (video, photos, and infographics). Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest are popular choices as well, and social networking newcomers Snapchat, Periscope, Vine, and Meerkat also made the list.
- When asked which of part of the "media mix" (Paid, Earned, Shared and Owned) was most important to their communications programs, it was not surprising to see respondents rank earned media efforts as their top priority; after all, it has long been a staple of PR. But owned media -- blogs, tip sheets, case studies, webinars, etc. -- ranked nearly as high in importance among respondents. PR and marketing pros recognize there are many opportunities to create relevant, useful resources for their customers and tell brand stories through the content they design and own.
- Seventy-seven percent (77%) of respondents said "yes" to measuring their content efforts, proving that for PR and marketing pros, what's worth doing is worth measuring. And while engagement, reach and website analytics are the most commonly named metrics, click-through rates (CTRs), lead-generation, brand awareness and influence were close runners-up.
"Results from this survey echo conversations I've had with customers about the importance of content to their PR and marketing programs, and to their overall business objectives," said Sanjay Kulkarni, Marketwired Vice President, Product & Marketing. "It's clear that relevant, quality content is increasingly important to telling brand stories, boosting customer affinity and driving qualified leads for the sales team. And while building a content strategy isn't quick or simple, our respondents see it as a must-have for 2016. They recognize the opportunities in front of them by having a plan in place."
As its customers embrace social media publishing, influencer relations and content marketing, Marketwired delivers solutions that support new ways to share relevant content with the right audiences through the right channels. Marketwired Resonate is an integrated platform for news distribution and social media publishing that lets customers enhance their releases and other announcements with unlimited multimedia assets, distribute to media worldwide, and instantly share their content with Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn networks.
A significant percentage (39%) of survey respondents said they were not prepared with an influencer relations program for 2016, and many cited not knowing where to begin and a lack of resources and/or budget as barriers to implementing a program. Marketwired Influencers provides a 360-degree view of a company's influencers to help inform content marketing strategy, significantly bolster audience outreach, and find new avenues to share news and information. Customers can uncover new audiences and opportunities to cultivate relationships with a broader network of relevant influencers; from digital journalists to niche bloggers to customer advocates on Twitter -- the full spectrum of people most interested in their content. Marketwired Influencers provides the industry's best data and intelligence, powered by partners Traackr, Trendspottr and Sysomos, that surfaces new audiences, supports their content marketing programs, and presents real opportunities to grow their business.
About the Survey
Marketwired surveyed PR and marketing professionals between October 15 and November 25, 2015 via the online questionnaire, "Are You a #ContentMachine?" More than 100 respondents, from corporate PR/marketing departments, PR/marketing agencies, non-profit/government agencies and other professional settings contributed to the data in the survey results and infographic.
The survey coincided with the PRSA 2015 International conference at which Marketwired hosted "You Can Be a Content Machine," a panel discussion about how PR and marketing professionals use content to raise brand awareness, increase audience engagement and attract customers that featured industry experts Michael Brito, Rebekah Iliff and Lee Odden.
- For more information on using influencers for PR and marketing, download the Marketwired Influencers brochure here
- To learn more about how influencers and content marketing can build brand and support business objectives, download Marketwired's content marketing tip sheet
- To discover how to incorporate multimedia, social media and reporting into news releases, download the Marketwired Resonate brochure here
- Tweet about this topic at #ContentMachine
Marketwired is a communications leader and partner of choice for marketing, public relations and investor relations professionals worldwide seeking premier news distribution and social communication solutions. For more than 30 years, the company has played a pivotal role in connecting newsmakers to news consumers by sharing market-moving, direct-from-source information on behalf of companies worldwide. The Marketwired team partners with thousands of customers to help them discover better ways to create and share their news with the people who influence their brands and impact their business. Visit www.marketwired.com and follow @Marketwired.
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