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Want to be a better content marketer? Don’t overlook the importance of technology.
Need convincing? Consider this: CMI’s 2019 B2B research found that 67% of the most successful content marketers rated their organization’s content tech proficiency as expert or advanced. Only 5% of the least successful content marketers rate their organizations as expert or advanced in content tech proficiency.
67% of most successful #content marketers say their org is advanced or expert in #tech proficiency. @cmicontent
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Of course, getting the most from the array of tools and technologies that power a content marketing program is easier if you pick technologies well suited to your program’s needs in the first place.
“Making the wrong (technology) pick doesn’t necessarily doom a marketing program, but it can make success more difficult to achieve,” writes analyst Tony Byrne in the November issue of Chief Content Officer magazine.
As the list of content tech options expands every day, creating a short list of options only gets more complex. There’s no substitute for a well-planned tech strategy and thorough research to determine what best fits your team and tech needs.
Still, when considering new technologies, many content tech buyers are curious about what tools and technologies other content marketers use to build their programs.
We are, too. So we asked.
Tech a look under the content marketing hood
Earlier this year, we surveyed the CMI community about which content tools and technologies they can’t live without.
If you’re one of the 700 that took the survey, you might remember how it worked. If not, here’s a quick recap. We offered a drop-down list of content technologies in 34 categories and gave the option to write in a response in case we missed a favorite tool. Respondents weren’t required to pick a favorite in every category, just in those where they had a top pick.
This infographic shows the five favorites in each category. (For a complete list of companies in each category, check out CMI’s new ContentTECH directory – you’ll see a Fan Favorites badge next to companies that made it into the top five in this survey.)
Here’s a look at the seven categories that attracted the most responses.
More people who answered the survey picked a favorite in digital analytics than in any other category (including content marketing platforms). More than half (58%) of the 424 people who chose a favorite named Google Analytics the top pick. Rounding out this category: Adobe Analytics, Moz, IBM Digital Analytics, and Kissmetrics.
Content marketing platforms
1 in 5 surveyed picked @DivvyHQ as top #contentmarketing platform. @cmicontent #research
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When it comes to nurturing an audience, email is the go-to for 87% of B2B content marketers, according to CMI research. And, among the nearly 400 content marketers who picked a favorite in this category, 33% named MailChimp their favorite. Other favorites include HubSpot, Salesforce, Constant Contact, and (tied) Campaign Monitor/Emma.
One-third of voters tapped @Mailchimp as their favorite #email marketing tool. @cmicontent #research
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We all know how tricky it can be to manage content projects. Coordinating tasks and deadlines among all the people involved (and who may not work in the same building or even time zone) requires a lot of organization, communication, and a project management tool. For 19% of the 397 content marketers who picked a favorite, that tool was Asana. Trello, DivvyHQ, Basecamp, and Microsoft Project also earned Fan-Favorite status.
19% of surveyed content marketers say @Asana is their favorite project management tool. @cmicontent #research
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For many of the same reasons they need project management tools, content teams love their collaboration tools. Again, nearly 400 content marketers responded to this question. Thirty-five percent picked Slack as the favorite. Trello, DivvyHQ, Confluence, and Evernote also earned the Fan-Favorite designation.
35% of #content teams picked @slackhq as their favorite collaboration tool. @cmicontent #tools
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Social media analytics
Sixty-one percent of B2B content marketers increased their use of social media over the last year, CMI research found. It only makes sense that marketers want to know what’s working on social channels. Hootsuite earned a favorite designation from 24% of the nearly 400 content marketers who responded in this category. BuzzSumo, Sprout Social, TrackMaven, and Salesforce Social Studio were also popular picks.
Almost 1/4 of content marketers selected @Hootsuite as fav #socialmedia analytics tool. @cmicontent #research
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Webinars/virtual events/conferencing tools
Content marketers love webinars (and find them especially effective in the middle stages of the funnel, according to new demand generation research from CMI). It’s no surprise this category also attracted nearly 400 responses. Of those, GoToWebinar earned the most mentions, followed by Zoom, WebEx, Google Hangouts, Skype, and On24.
The crest of the rest
While other categories were more niche (not as many people chose a favorite), they all provide important functions for content initiatives. Here’s a recap of those favorites (top pick listed first):
Account-based marketing (ABM)
Artificial intelligence (AI) for content marketing
CMS & web experience management
Customer relationship management (CRM)
Digital asset management (DAM)
Enterprise content management
Live chat platforms
Marketing resource management
Online community management
Online reputation management
Social media management
Social media monitoring
Social media suites
How to use (and not to use) these results
Tony Byrne wrote a book on how to choose content tech the right way and shared his technology selection process at the Intelligent Content Conference earlier this year. Nowhere does he recommend basing your tech purchases on what other content marketers choose.
That’s not the goal of this survey. In fact, the perfect option for you might not be one of this year’s fan favorites because your needs are so different from other companies’ needs.
Instead, think of the survey results (and the ContentTECH directory) as a jumping-off point for exploration. Simply taking the survey prompted surprise from several respondents at the number of content tech options they’d never heard of. So explore the directory (and tech options in general) with your own team’s goals and circumstances in mind.
When invited to share thoughts on what makes a technology a favorite, one respondent wrote: “The best kind of tool takes away the pain of day-to-day tasks, freeing up time for creative thought.”
Only you and your team know the day-to-day tasks that require pain relief at your organization.
Do your research, talk to your teams (including IT), evaluate your options, and then embrace your technology choices.
And let us know your thoughts on your favorite technologies in the comments.
Please note: All tools included in our blog posts are suggested by authors (or, in this case, survey respondents), not the CMI editorial team. No one post can provide all relevant tools in the space. Feel free to include additional tools in the comments (from your company or ones you have used).
Make plans today to expand your content tech knowledge in April in San Diego. Register today to lock in Super Early-Bird pricing for the new ContentTECH Summit.
Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute
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