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Does Content Marketing Actually Work? The Data Says Yes.

On this episode of the ProfitWell Report, Chris Handy, Co-Founder at ClosedWon, wants to know if content marketing really works in the long run. Can it help your company grow? Does it have an impact on net retention? Well, after gathering data from over 3,000 subscription businesses and 30,000 subscription consumers, we're ready to give out all the answers.

Content marketing has become the gold standard in marketing, helping your prospects and customers understand your business, the problems you’re solving, and giving them value before they’ve even considered purchasing from you. The growth of content is also undeniable with the U.S. about to see nearly 30 million blogs, and the entire world is seeing roughly 5 times that. But is it working?

Customer acquisition costs (CAC) are up across the board, but content CAC is roughly 15% less than paid CAC, suggesting some efficiency when it comes to an inbound marketing strategy.

Note though that content CAC is actually growing at a quicker rate than paid CAC, suggesting that this gap may be closing as content becomes more expensive to produce due to the density of how much content is out there.

Here’s what’s interesting though:

47% of buyers still view 3 to 5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales representative, companies with blogs tend to get 67% more leads than those who don’t have a blog, and Inbound marketing close rates are still 8 to 10 times higher compared to those of outbound efforts.

So even though there are increasing costs, there’s a compounding effect when it comes to content. After all, content ads significantly to brand, trust, and even surface area since content can sit on your site forever.

When it comes to retention, companies who are deploying content are seeing 5%-10% better retention, especially when they deploy content that is more customer success focused. 

And yet, content’s power appears to be more on the overall growth side of the house as hinted at from the facts and figures cited above.

When comparing overall growth rates between companies deploying a content strategy with those who aren’t, the content companies are seeing roughly 30% higher growth rates than folks not using content marketing.

It’s safe to say that the whole theory that HubSpot drove so many years ago around Inbound Marketing turned out to be true.

While we can give HubSpot credit, this also reflects just the shift in the market. Density of more and more companies vying for your attention and the diminishing of information asymmetry means that our customers have more power now, and that’s amazing.

The onus is now on us to focus on brand, focus on education, and ultimately focus on a great user experience to convert prospects into customers. It’s the inbound way.  

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