It's that time of year again.
Time for the predictions, assumptions and insights about the coming year to make their way into the mainstream.
Staying up to date and relevant has never been more important for marketers. Over the last decade, we've seen dramatic shifts in online marketing, which if left ignored can have a detrimental impact on your ability to drive growth.
At the heart of the matter is the intersection of social media and content marketing. You can't have one without the other: effective social media engagement requires rich content and good content needs a viable distribution channel.
To help shed some light on what's in store for 2015 (and look at how 2014 has played out so far) the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs have once again combined their efforts to release the 2015 B2B Content Marketing Report.
While you can read the full report here, I've pulled out some of the more interesting social media stats (below) and included an infographic that we created to give you a helpful snapshot of the key takeaways.
LinkedIn For The Win
Unsurprisingly, LinkedIn was the most used social media channel with 94% of B2B marketers using the platform regularly. According to the report, LinkedIn was also the most effective social media platform, although it wasn't clear whether "effectiveness" was measured according to engagement, lead generation or simply traffic.
Google Plus: From Underdog to Contender
Let's face it. Many marketers (especially in the B2B space) are still figuring out Google Plus. Despite that, 65% of marketers (up 9% from 2014) have begun to use the network, making it one of the top 5 used social media tactics after LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.
SlideShare: Not New, Still Noteworthy
SlideShare has also steadily grown in usage. While the report doesn't dive into how marketers are leveraging the platform, it's easy to see how SlideShare can be an effective medium to communicate more complex ideas to a targeted audience. Beyond the presentation style format, it's also a powerful network in its own right with the ability to drive significant traffic in a short time.
Content Is (Still) King
While social media is one side of the coin, the lack of a solid content can cripple your entire social strategy. As I mentioned earlier, social media and content are intertwined. You need one to leverage the other, which is why we've broken down some of the key insights from this report that are specific to content marketing:
To be an effective content marketer, you need a documented strategy (not just a verbal one!)
70% of B2B marketers are creating more content than a year ago
Only 21% of content marketers say they're successful at tracking ROI
As far as marketing tactics go, Infographics had the greatest increase in usage from 51% to 62%
More than half of B2B marketers plan to increase their content marketing budget in 2015
The primary initiative for marketers in 2015 is to start measuring content effectiveness
For those of you who don't have time to digest the full 40 page report, check out the infographic below to get some of the key highlights at a glance.
This infographic was originally appeared on Uberflip.