While content strategy has been buzzed about for years in digital marketing circles, 2012 has heard it increase to a roar.

More companies are answering customer demand for meaningful, dynamic, and interactive content by incorporating their message into a larger story, as well as  current events and the related interests of their target audiences.

Thought leadership is the new brand identity — and proof of it.

What changed? A seismic shift occurred in cultivating and maintaining B2C and B2B relationships, away from passing off marketing materials and keyword-only articles and towards delivering original journalism and curated articles, reports, infographics, and presentations that compellingly underscore the company’s fundamental mission.

For companies that have transitioned to content marketing, the investment has paid off. Today, twice the number of marketers (82%) implement content marketing over those who leveraging print, television, and radio advertising, according to a survey by HiveFire. What’s more, Google exec and blogger Matt Cutts noted last month that, for search purposes, quality content trumps search engine optimization (SEO). 

While corporate blogs remain destinations for information and insights, the true measure of their content’s success is seen in traction across social media channels, not only Facebook and Twitter but also LinkedIn and Google+. Increasingly, search engines are pulling from social signals when producing results. 

At its best, the new content strategy blends marketing methodologies — web design and writing, SEO, metadata, social media — into an integrated, highly adaptable plan of action. Like content itself, its marketing best practices will evolve further this year. Will your company be ready?

David Felfoldi

David Felfoldi

David Felfoldi is a digital marketing strategist for SHERPA Global. Over the past 15 years, David has guided the digital strategy behind notable organizations such as ADP, Spanx, Racetrac, Gables, and the National Center of Civil and Human Rights. When not tinkering with technology or musing on marketing David enjoys running and cycling adventures across the globe.

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