Top 100 Content Marketing Question: What are the top 3 most popular types of content marketing? Which are most effective?
Research reveals the most popular and effective types of content marketing in 2023
Surveys by the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and Marketing Profs B2B (business to business) show which types of content marketing assets are most popular and effective. This update reflects the CMI’s 2023 surveys of B2B and B2C marketers.
Whether you’re a business or consumer marketer, here’s what your peers are doing right now.
Popular types of B2B content
Where are B2B marketers investing to create new content marketing assets? In the past year, B2B marketers emphasized these assets:
- Nine out of 10 marketers (89%) created short articles of 1,500 or fewer words.
- Three out of four marketers (75%) created videos.
- Two out of three marketers (67%) created case studies.
- About three out of five marketers created virtual events, webinars, and online courses; infographics, charts, and data visualizations; long articles with more than 1,500 words; and E-books or white papers.
This chart shows the content marketing assets that B2B marketers are creating most often:
Which content helps B2B content marketers succeed?
In-person events came back in 2022. Which content marketing assets worked the best for B2B marketers?
- Almost half (48%) said in-person events worked best.
- Almost half (47%) said virtual events, webinars, and online courses worked best.
- Almost half (46%) said research reports worked best.
- About two out of five (43%) said that long-form content such as E-books and white papers worked best.
Here are the 12 types of content marketing assets that produce the best results for B2B marketers:
Where will B2B marketers’ budgets go in 2023?
Content marketing is crucial for B2B buyers. On average, B2B buyers seek out 13 pieces of content, according to the FocusVision study 2020. Of these 13 pieces, eight come from brands and five come from third-party sources.
Third-party content adds crucial credibility to your brand. To build credibility among third parties, marketers need to ally with the public relations (or corporate communications) teams.
B2B marketers are finding the most success with social media, speaking and presenting at events, media/public relations, and guest posts in third-party publications:
The most used organic social media in B2B content marketing are LinkedIn (95%), Facebook (64%), Twitter (56%), and YouTube (50%).
Which social media work best in B2B? LinkedIn remains the most effective organic social media channel for B2B marketers.
Popular types of B2C content
Among business-to-consumer (B2C) marketers, short articles, videos, and graphics are the most popular types of content.
- Almost nine out of 10 (86%) create short articles and posts of fewer than 1,500 words.
- Seven out of 10 (71%) create videos.
- Six out of 120 (57%) create infographics, charts, data visualizations; and long articles of more than 1,500 words.
Close behind are virtual events, long articles, and case studies.
This graph shows the types of content used most by B2C marketers:
Which of these content types should you use?
That depends on the media preferences of your specific buyers. To learn your audience’s specific media habits, perform buyer persona research.
B2C marketers are relying on these organic channels to distribute content:
- Almost all consumer marketers (95%) are using social media platforms.
- About three out of five (56%) use speaking and presenting at events.
- More than half of consumer marketers (53%) use media and public relations.
- Nearly half (47%) use guest posts and articles in third-party publications.
B2C marketers clearly are working to earn third-party credibility, also known as social proof, with earned media. Here are the organic distribution channels that B2C marketers use most:
The most-used organic social media in B2C content marketing are LinkedIn (93%), Facebook (88%), Instagram (73%), YouTube (67%), and Twitter (61%). The big surprise here is LinkedIn, which has become the #1 social media platform for consumer marketers.
Among social media, here are consumer marketers’ preferences for organic posts.
The CMI survey showed that the assets that produce the best results for B2C content marketers are in-person events, short articles and posts, and videos:
Where will B2C content marketers invest in 2023?
Similarities and differences in B2B and B2C content
Whether you’re a consumer or business marketer, short articles and videos are among the most popular types of content. If you’re just starting out in content marketing, these are good places for you to begin.
As the pandemic appears to recede, in-person events are bouncing back for all marketers. Yet virtual events continue to be important.
Content is becoming more and more visual
In all forms of content marketing, visual content is growing fast, and on its way to becoming the most popular type of content.
The CMI/Marketing Profs studies continue to show increasing interest in visual content among all marketers. Marketers are using more types of visual content, including:
- Videos (pre-produced and streaming)
- Data visualizations.
What’s the future of content marketing?
My blog, “What is the future of content marketing?” foreshadowed many of the changes that are unfolding now. I predicted that the content would become more visual and more audio. I expect content marketing to continue becoming smarter, more personalized, and more empathetic.
Effectiveness varies along the buyer’s journey
Marketers find that the most effective types of content vary during each stage in the buyer’s journey. In other words, you need to create at least four different forms of content if you want to provide buyers with what they seek in a carefully considered purchase.
In the early stages of building awareness and interest, text, audio, and visual content lead the way. The most popular and effective types of content are:
- Blog posts and articles, used by 73% of marketers
- Podcasts, operated by 57%
- E-books, operated by 56%
- Videos were used by 54%.
In the middle stages of consideration and intent, long-form content becomes more important. The most popular and effective types of content are:
- White papers, used by 53% of marketers
- Webinars, used by 47%
- Interactive content, used by 46%
- Case studies were used by 42%.
In the late stages of evaluation and purchase, the most popular and effective types of content are:
- Case studies, used by 40% of marketers
- In-person events were used by 32%.
When you look through buyers’ eyes, you’ll see the need to create 3 or more forms of content to nudge the buyer along through each step in the buyer’s journey.
“What are the top 3 most popular types of content marketing? Which are most effective?” is among marketers’ Top 100 Questions about content marketing.
You’ll find the Top 100 Questions and answers here.
What’s your top question about content marketing? I’d love to hear it.