Marketing without content is like a book without words. Regardless of its platform or type, the right content strategy can draw attention with great plotlines, humor, nostalgia, or hooks; help brands connect with prospects on a relateable human level; and even lead to revenue (when a story resonates).
Because content is engrained all across marketing and advertising, what engages audiences is always shifting. It seems like whenever a new, viral social platform emerges, brands rush to adapt their content to what's trendy there.
As new trends emerge and evolve, it's hard to keep up. Luckily, the stats below can help guide you in building or refining the best content marketing strategy for your brand, resources, and chosen platforms.
Content Marketing Statistics to Know
- Marketers say sales, web traffic, and social engagement are the most critical metrics for measuring the effectiveness of their content marketing strategy.
- 91% of businesses use video as a marketing tool.
- Instagram is used by 65% of social media marketers, just behind Facebook at 67%.
- Short articles/posts and videos are the top two content types that B2C marketers used in the last 12+ months.
- 22% of marketers say Instagram has the most growth potential in 2023 than any other platform.
- Gen Z ranked Instagram as their favorite social media app in 2022.
- 50% of Millennials trust product recommendations from influencers.
- 44% of marketers say the most significant benefit of working with small influencers is that it's less expensive.
Want to gain more insights on what stats like those above mean for you? Get more data and insights about how to build a content strategy here.
Content Marketing Trends to Watch in 2023
1. Short-form video takes center stage in 2023.
Short-form video is the most popular trend among marketers, has the highest ROI, and will see the most growth in 2023. Marketers plan to invest more in short-form videos than any other trend.
In fact, 90% of marketers using short-form videos will increase or maintain their investment in 2023, and 21% plan to leverage short-form videos for the first time in the same year.
This coincides with the videos consumers prefer to watch, as 73% of consumers prefer to watch short-form videos to learn about a service or product.
This consumer behavior has made videos, short-form specifically, the primary form of media used within any content strategy for the fourth year.
Create the most engaging videos for your audience with tips from our video marketing course.
2. More brands will emphasize their values in their marketing content.
A recent study commissioned by Google Cloud found 82% of shoppers want a brand's values to align with theirs. Furthermore, the same study found 75% of consumers would part ways with a brand over conflicting values.
So, it's no wonder 30% of marketers are creating content that reflects their brand’s values, making it one of the most popular trends in marketing. The trend has the 5th highest ROI and will see growth in 2023.
The COVID-19 pandemic plays a role in the increased importance of values in marketing, according to Giusy Buonfantino, Vice President of Consumer Packaged Goods at Google Cloud.
"COVID-19 drove people to reflect on their priorities, elevating concepts like community service, equity, and sustainability," Buonfantino said in a blog post sharing the above findings.
Buonfantino says today's consumers aren't just looking for savings or convenience; they also want to feel good about spending their money at a company whose values align with theirs.
According to Google Cloud's study, sustainability is a value most consumers (52%) are interested in. Consumers want to know how companies manage their resources and whether their materials are sourced responsibly.
3. Influencer Marketing will remain vital to reaching audiences online.
According to the Digital Marketing Institute, almost half of consumers depend on recommendations from influencers to determine the products they want to purchase.
Furthermore, 1 in 4 marketers are leveraging influencer marketing and it offers the 2nd highest ROI of any trend.
Influencer marketing is expected to see significant growth in 2023 with 17% of marketers planning to invest in it for the first time. So, why is influencer marketing so beneficial?
According to Nielsen Scarborough, 42% of Americans seek the advice of others for purchase decisions and they want advice from relatable sources.
Influencers are seen as more relatable than brands and companies and use their relatability to form tight bonds with their audience.
So, if you're looking to humanize your brand and create a deeper connection with consumers — influencer marketing is the way to go.
4. Funny, trendy, and relatable content is crucial in 2023.
Relatable content will grow significantly in 2023 as 46% of social media marketers will leverage it for the first time. Among those using it, 49% plan to increase their investment, and 43% keep investing the same amount.
Additionally, funny content will see the 2nd most investment of any content type in 2023, and 33% of social media marketers plan to use it for the first time next year.
If you're not sure what's trending with audiences or what's getting the most laughs this year, don't be afraid to lean on influencers.
In addition to being relatable, influencers are constantly tapping into what their audience cares about and what makes them laugh.
5. Social media remains the best way to reach Gen Z.
Social media is the #1 channel to reach Gen Z consumers. We found that 93% of Gen Z spend an average of four hours daily on social media, and 57% of Gen Z have discovered a new product on social media within the past three months.
Furthermore, 28% of Gen Z consumers bought a product through a social media app. Additionally, social media is the marketing channel Gen Z consumers discover new products on most often, and it's their preferred channel for product discovery.
So, what social media platforms do Gen Z use the most? According to our data, YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok are in the top 3.
Want to build or refine a killer social media content strategy that your followers or audiences will engage with? Check out our recently-updated HubSpot Academy Course.
6. Strategic SEO tactics are a must-have.
SEO is far from new in marketing, but it still has a crucial place in content marketing strategies — especially for web content. Our research has found that nearly one-third of marketers use a website to attract and convert leads, while a majority of site traffic comes from search engines.
When surveying a mix of B2B and B2C marketers, SEO has the fourth largest ROI, and most marketers using it (88%) will increase or maintain their investment in 2023. We see these numbers increasing when we look at B2Bs specifically.
But, the world of SEO is changing with innovations around AI. For example, Google aims to launch Search Generative Experiences by 2024 and is building new ranking frameworks to reward sites that create highly original content featuring expertise, quotes, and original insights over unoriginal content (such as basic blog posts created by AI, or that just aim to answer a common search question.)
In a recent survey of 600+ bloggers and SEOs, 75% of respondents believe these changes will improve search experiences, leading to more use of search platforms. Meanwhile, 68% believe it will also increase site traffic.
Still, some do worry that it will result in worsening search traffic and lower real estate as we don't know how Google's generated search answer summaries will cite or give awareness to the content it pulls from.
Stay Up-to-date On Your Industry
It’s always essential to stay up-to-date on what is happening in your industry; being aware of these trends is a way to do so.
Should you choose to leverage one of these trends in your marketing strategy, ensure that it’s relevant to your business needs and will help you achieve your goals. HubSpot's Free AI Content Writer can assist you in leveraging trends by helping you generate content for blogs, website pages, social posts, and more.