At SiriusDecisions 2014: More than 60% of B2B content ends up in 'content wasteland'

Orlando, Fla.—Content marketing is the tactic du jour for B2B marketers, but, according to a survey released by Marisa Kopec during a SiriusDecisions 2014 Summit presentation, much of that content is wasted due to ineffective content creation and delivery processes.

"We're wasting a lot of money," said the VP and group director, go-to-market, at SiriusDecisions. "I'm not talking thousands; I'm not even talking millions. I'm talking tens of millions of dollars a year."

The survey found that 60 percent to 70 percent of content created by B2B companies is never used.

The shift from product- to audience-centric content creation is not happening fast enough to fuel inbound marketing and enable sales, Kopec said.

B2B organizations are adopting best practices, but only 10 percent to 23 percent of companies reported that they are in an advanced state of maturity. Additionally, 53 percent of B2B companies don't have a unified, enterprise-wide content creation process.

But the survey provided a glimmer of hope; about 40 percent of companies are in the beginning stages of adopting such a process. Also good news is the fact that 44 percent of B2B companies have a strong focus on buyer- or persona-centric content.

Kopec said that the primary reason that content created centrally goes unused is that the topic is not relevant to the buyer audience (29 percent). Second is that the target doesn't even know that content exists (25 percent).

Although 83 percent of companies said they plan to increase buyer-centric content creation in 2014, marketers' big challenge is a lack of buyer insight (60 percent). They just don't know their customers, Kopec said.

One thing that could help B2B organizations, she said, is hiring or creating a content operations manager. No single function can own content, but organizations must appoint a foreman who acts as the operational hub, she said.

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