In Reel Time: Video and Other Growing Mediums Should Have Us All Measuring Up Our Marketing Efforts
After making the case for sticking with the print format a few postings back, I am happy to learn, via McMurry’s ContentWise 2012 Industry Characteristics Study, that print remains the content marketing industry’s channel of choice.
Sponsored by the Custom Content Council, this 12th annual investigation into “The Volume and Type of Content Marketing in America” finds that most (87 percent) of the Fortune 1000 marketing professionals and executives surveyed for the study are still very much “on” paper. Print spending was $23.6 billion across the content marketing industry, with $16.6 billion spent on all other forms of media.
At first glance, branded video’s fourth-place ranking (52 percent of respondents) behind the web (82 percent) and e-mail (71 percent) may seem surprising, considering the ubiquity of the medium today. After failing to kill the radio star in 1979, does video have the muscle to join the stage with these other tried and true content marketing formats?
The answer seems to be an incontrovertible yes, as the category continues to register what surely are eventual critical mass metrics. According to digital analytics leader comScore, an all-time high of 188 million U.S. Internet users watched 27.7 billion online videos this August. Not all were branded videos, of course, but with consumers exposed to some 9.5 billion video ads in the same month, the strength of the medium is unassailable.
For all of its mass appeal and consumption, though, content marketers should plan carefully before just diving into the oceanic world of video or really any medium to the exclusion of others, for that matter. When it comes to creating any content, first, be creative and focus on telling a great story, or as Sasha Savic, CEO of MediaCom USA recently told Ad Age, “Never Cut and Paste Anything.” And, make sure any content you’ve invested in is associated with the brand, and not a random misfire such as Dr Pepper’s recent Evolution graphic on Facebook.
Now more than ever, the gap between traditional advertising and content marketing is increasingly narrowing (will the latter supplant the former someday?), with online video, mobile Internet and social media all playing a major role in the change. However, no medium can be deployed as a singular savior to the very diverse challenges faced by today’s marketers. Take a hard look at the most recent ContentWise survey, think about the diverse and growing marketing landscape before you and ask the tough question of “does my brand measure up?”
Well, do you?
Jeff Heilman covers business, marketing, law and travel for a range of custom and trade publications. Also an award-winning photographer and copywriter, he ghostwrote Courageous Counsel, a book on the history of women general counsel in the Fortune 500, published September 2011.