It’s Official: Content Marketing Rules the Universe

July 18, 2016

Can you say “content marketing” in Malay, or Dutch? No matter the language you speak, these are exciting times for content marketers. Why, you ask? Because B2B content marketing has officially gone global, and we can prove it.


But let’s back up for a bit of context. In 2014, Mark Schaefer penned a popular post about content shock. In it, he summarized how content creation was expanding at an unsustainable rate when compared to online content demand. Many marketers took his message to mean that content marketing was dead altogether. As a result, we faced some setbacks in 2015.

(Google search engine results for “Content Marketing is Dead”, 2015)

But in truth, as more practitioners entered the fold, fewer and fewer were taking the time to document and implement a cohesive content marketing strategy. Content Marketing Institute’s 2015 Budgets, Benchmarks & Trends study found that as few as 35% of B2B marketers had a documented strategy.

So it’s true, content wasn’t working for most folks. But then again, how many initiatives work without a strategy attached to them?

Yet, the savvy marketers who used content marketing to its full potential (by documenting a strategy, experimenting, testing, etc.) continued to reap rewards. Why else would nearly 80% of marketers plan to create more content this year compared to last?

Way back in 2008 (decades ago in internet years), Seth Godin said, “Content marketing is the only marketing left.” Seth didn’t mean that traditional advertising suddenly ceased to exist. He was basically telling marketers: If you want to reach consumers from here on out, you need to create stuff they care about.

Was Seth right? If we use the search demand for the term “content marketing” as the barometer, it appears he was. Not just in the U.S., but in all corners of the globe.

Search queries for content marketing have increased dramatically in the last several years. Globally, there were a full 74,000 queries in April of 2016 alone. This is a 25% increase, compared to the same month in 2015.

Global Google Trends data for, “content marketing”, 2009-present

It’s no surprise that monthly search volume for “content marketing” is highest in the United States (below). Content marketing was born in the US, after all. With events like Content Marketing World, along with a steady stream of thought leadership content from leading practioners, content marketing is developing deep roots in the US.

United States

·       Popularity Score: 50

·       Monthly Volume: 14,800

Next, let’s examine search trends for five more countries (in order of search volume). For your reference, we are using a combination of Google Trends data along with search query volume as ranking factors. You will also notice a “Popularity Score” for each country, which is calculated as a ratio that measures the frequency of searches for our target keyword against other in-country queries.

1. United Kingdom

·       Popularity Score: 54

·       Monthly Volume: 5400

2. Denmark

·       Popularity score: 73

·       Monthly volume: 1600

3.  India

·       Popularity: 60

·       Monthly volume: 1600

4. Australia

·       Popularity score: 55

·       Volume: 1600

5. Singapore

·       Popularity Score: 100

·       Monthly Volume: 880

The bottom line?

If you want to reach today’s consumers, regardless of where they are in the world, content marketing is the way to do it. So it pays to become a sophisticated content marketer.

For 100+ pages of content marketing strategies, insights, examples, and advice from the brightest minds in marketing, read The Sophisticated Marketer’s Guide to Content Marketing.

Photo: Olli Henze