An Insider’s Look at the State of Content Marketing

According to Outbrain‘s , Outbrain surveyed senior-level brand marketers and agency executives at the 2012 Effie Awards — a program that recognizes the most effective and impactful marketing and advertising communications and came up with “an insider’s look at the state of content marketing.”

Key Findings

The brand and agency marketers surveyed say that social media, video advertising and content marketing are viewed as the most effective tactics used for brand awareness, consideration and affinity.

The marketers surveyed said that their purpose in using content marketing is not to generate direct leads or sales, but to drive brand awareness among top of purchase funnel consumers. When measuring the success of content marketing efforts, social media engagement is the most popular metric (89%), followed by views and content downloads (76%).

  • 100% use content marketing as a marketing strategy.
  • 82% expect to increase content marketing efforts in 2012.
  • 96% use social media, which is the most popular channel marketers use for driving traffic to content.
  • 88% increase in social media usage from 2011.

Video is tops among content marketers

Marketers surveyed create digital content specifically for informational and/or entertainment value to consumers. 87% of marketers create video content, making it the most popular medium, followed by written content, such as blog posts (67%) and articles (44%). Other visual mediums such as slideshows and photo galleries are used by 44% of respondents.


Content marketing’s star continues to rise in the online marketing world as consumer brands like American Express are using it alongside more traditional strategies to reach their target audiences. Clearly, the reason is that it fills gaps that traditional marketing no longer meets, especially among a more connected public. Branded content is engaging, provides consumer value and adds to – instead of interrupting – the online experience.

While traditional marketing strategies are still king, content is queen.

You can download a high res PDF of the report: The State of Content Marketing, 2012.

Related article

Assessing Content’s Central Role In Brand Marketing, Forbes