Market Data

Content Marketing Survey Report

By Econsultancy,

Econsultancy's first Content Marketing Survey Report, sponsored by Outbrain, is based on a survey of more than 1,300 marketers working for brands, agencies, and publishers.

The survey looks at the amount and type of content marketing carried out by organizations, how many brands have a strategy in place, the tactics and channels they are using for content, ownership of content marketing within organizations, how publishers are using content marketing, and the challenges and barriers to success in this area.

This research has been produced with the support of the Association of Online Publishers and the Content Marketing Association.

This year's study shows that only a minority have a content strategy in place, despite the vast majority of brands recognizing the importance of content marketing. At the same time, there is a concern that content marketers may be focusing on simplistic objectives rather than focusing on the bottom line.

The 48-page report, also summarized in presentation format, contains insight and comment from leading experts in the content marketing world and associated digital sectors, including:

  • Alison Feldmann, Editor in Chief, Etsy
  • Andrew Girdwood, Media Innovations Director, LBi
  • Catherine Toole, CEO, Sticky Content
  • David Sasson, COO, Outbrain
  • Doug Kessler, Creative Director and Co-Founder, Velocity Partners
  • Gilad de Vries, SVP Strategy, Outbrain
  • James Carson, Head of Digital Marketing, Bauer Media
  • James Keady, Digital Marketing Manager, McLaren Automotive
  • Julia Hutchison, Chief Operating Officer, Content Marketing Association
  • Kevin Gibbons, Managing Director and Founder, Quaturo
  • Rob Brett, Head of Data Trading, Future Publishing
  • Tim Cain, Head of Research and Insight, Association of Online Publishers
  • Thomas Messett, Global Editor in Chief - Social Media, Nokia 

The report findings are divided into the following sections:

  • Strategy, objectives and measurement
  • Content formats, tactics and distribution
  • Ownership and budgets
  • Publisher metrics and tactics
  • Challenges to the sector

Highlights from the findings include:

  • Over 90% of respondents believe that content marketing will become more important over the next 12 months.
  • Nearly three quarters (73%) of digital marketers agree that ‘brands are becoming publishers’.
  • Less than half of companies have dedicated budgets (34%) or dedicated individuals (46%) for content marketing. 
  • Increased engagement is the most commonly cited objective for content marketers, with 52% of in-house marketers and 58% of agency marketers listing this as one of their top three business objectives.

Table of contents

  1. Executive Summary and Highlights
    1. About Econsultancy
    2. About Outbrain
  2. Foreword by Outbrain
  3. Methodology
  4. Findings
    1. Strategy, objectives and measurement
      1. Content marketing strategy and importance
      2. Business objectives
      3. Measuring success
    2. Formats, tactics and distribution
      1. Types of content used
      2. Outsourcing of content creation
      3. Effectiveness of types of content
      4. Social platforms used to share and promote content
      5. Tactics used to drive traffic
    3. Ownership and budgets
      1. Organisational ownership
      2. Content marketing budgets
    4. Publisher metrics and tactics
    5. Challenges
      1. Barriers to effective content marketing
      2. Opinions regarding content marketing
  5. Appendix: Respondent Profiles
    1. Respondent profiles
    2. Business sector
    3. Business focus
    4. Geography
    5. Size of company by revenue


  • Pdf SAMPLE: Content Marketing Survey Report (843 KB PDF)
  • Pdf Disabled Content Marketing Survey Report (2.51 MB PDF)
  • Pdf Disabled Presentation: Content Marketing Survey Report (1.9 MB PDF)
  • Excel Disabled Content Marketing Survey Report Data (65 KB Microsoft Excel)

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