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Content Marketing

Content Marketing Hurdles: They’re Real, But Here’s How You Can Jump Them

By November 15, 2018April 11th, 2019No Comments

content marketing hurdlesEvery year, the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) does a massive survey to identify content marketing trends from every angle: industry, location, agency, in-house, budgets, technology, strategies, tactics, successes, and challenges.

In our recent email newsletters, we’ve discussed all the AMAZING things content marketers are doing:

  • 73% of B2B marketers are reporting success with their content marketing approach
  • 63% of B2B marketers report more success with content marketing compared to one year ago
  • 77% of B2B marketers can demonstrate that content marketing has increased audience engagement
  • 72% of B2B marketers can demonstrate that content marketing has increased their number of new leads

But try as you might, you can’t work up the courage or resources to start the race. You’re there, lined up on the starting blocks, ready for the 100-meter content marketing sprint — but what’s that? Your lane is the only one with hurdles setup! Everyone else has a seemingly clear path to the finish line. What gives?

You’re Not Alone in Your Struggles

Take a closer look at your competitors’ tracks. Each one of them has hurdles. Some are taller than others, some shorter, some farther down the track. And some lanes are running a relay rather than solo.

Content marketing is not a fair race. Everyone has something standing in their way, a unique starting point, and different abilities. CMI found two main hurdles in their 2018 survey:

73% of #B2B marketers report success with #contentmarketing Click To Tweet

If you’ve seen these hurdles in your own lane of the content marketing race, read on to see how you can overcome them to cross the finish line successfully.

Hurdle #1: Small Team

I talked to plenty of marketers at Content Marketing World who bootstrapped their content marketing programs from the ground up. They started with one person (themselves) who believed in the cause.

Sure, there were tales of late nights, weekends, and working through lunch to get their new venture off the ground while keeping up with their normal responsibilities. But as these people could tell you, it was worth it in the end.

If you believe in content marketing, scrape together the budget or resources (even if it’s just you) to set one campaign into motion. Document everything along the way so you can replicate what worked and throw out what didn’t.

When justifying your content marketing needs to your boss, demonstrate every success (with data) but be honest with your limitations and areas for improvement. Fight for the budget and the resources.

Those same late-night working bootstrappers now run the content marketing departments in their companies (yes, an entire department dedicated to the very thing they believed in and fought for).

Keep Improving

String together small successes and improve upon your methods as you go. The earlier you start, the more successful you’ll be. Programs gain momentum as you learn and get experience.

Of the 63% of B2B marketers reporting more success with content marketing compared to one year ago, content quality/efficiency gains and content strategy development/adjustments were the top factors contributing to the success.

Keep that in mind as you hone your processes down the line.

Hurdle #2: Lack of Time

Just about any employee in any position in any industry will tell you they don’t have enough time in the day to accomplish everything on their list. We seem to take pride in how “busy” we are.

Especially as part of a small team, in-house marketers have vast responsibilities ranging from digital marketing to analytics to design to event planning and everything in between. You have to eat, sleep, and bathe, so content marketing has to take a back seat, right?

If you’re really strapped for time, consider outsourcing your content marketing to an experienced agency. Outsource marketing is very common and surprisingly even more so among companies with larger marketing teams.

Despite citing a lack of resources and time, 44% of the same B2B marketers surveyed do not outsource any content marketing activities. That’s a tremendous missed opportunity.

Benefits of Outsourcing

  • Hiring one senior-level marketing executive can cost upwards of $175,000 per year in salary and benefits. Outsourcing can cut costs by up to 40%.
  • One hire can’t be an expert in all marketing disciplines, but an agency can. For less cost, you can access several brilliant minds across multiple areas of expertise.
  • An outsource team can scale up or down depending on the resources you need.
  • Agencies have niche expertise and many relationships that will serve you well.
  • You can learn from what your agency implements. They can set the foundation for success that you can run with.

Find out if outsource marketing is a good model for your company.

Find out if your company is a good fit for outsource #marketing Click To Tweet

Ready to Join the Race?

Let’s create a kick-ass content marketing strategy together. Get in touch with us to talk about jumping your hurdles.

Brian Shilling

Author Brian Shilling

Brian is our Executive Vice President of Client Operations with experience leading diverse teams of marketers and designers in strategic marketing, content creation, and crafting comprehensive messaging and positioning platforms for our healthcare and tech clients. To learn more about Brian's experiences and qualifications, visit our leadership team page.

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