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33 Statistics Summarizing the Year in Public Relations, Content Marketing, Social Media and SEO

34 Statistics Summarizing PR, Content Marketing, Social Media and SEO in 2017

Many of the posts published here are heavily weighted with surveys and reports. There are a couple solid reasons behind this approach.

First, I think data provides a wide canvas of the happenings in the industry. It’s good to know where and how other marketers are finding success.

Second, pouring over such reports is a great way to stay smart, relevant and maintain a competitive edge.  Writing is thinking, but more than that its the application of thinking; it transforms a passive activity into an active one.   We are after all forever students of marketing.

In the continuing effort to put a bow on content this year, I went back through each of 80 posts published this year pulling out interesting statistics and linking back to the original piece.

In the process of building this piece, I tried to group these into categories people might find helpful. Those categories are:

  • Content marketing statistics
  • PR and media relations statistics
  • Social media marketing statistics
  • Paid media and advertising statistics
  • Marketing measurement statistics
  • Search marketing and SEO statistics

And here we go…here are the benchmarks from 2017.

Content Marketing Statistics

1) How long should a blog post be?

The average post today is 1,142 words long but it’s clear that blog posts are getting longer – 41% longer than the typical post three years ago.

(Highly Successful Bloggers)

2) Content marketing supports lead nurturing.

A Chief Marketer report found the content most effective at moving prospects through the B2B sales funnel are articles and blogs [49%].

(B2B Lead Generation)

3) Quality matters in content marketing.

78% of B2B marketers say better quality content has driven success.

(B2B Content Marketing)

4) Audience building emerges as a pivotal skillset.

92% of the top-performing B2B content marketing programs say they are focused on building audiences.

(Forever Students of Marketing)

5) Thought leadership builds trust and drives sales

82% of respondents to an Edelman study “said thought leadership has increased their trust in a vendor organization.”

(Thought Leadership Influences Sales)

6) Reliable sources build trust.

“Some 72% of B2B buyers say they have been placing a higher emphasis on the trustworthiness of content sources over the past year.”

(Imperative of Content Marketing)

7) Content marketing platform preferences.

Bloggers, by an overwhelming majority (76%), choose to run their blogs on WordPress. The next most commonly used platform for blogging is Squarespace at 8% and Blogger at 3%.

(State of Blogging)

8) Content marketing remains a top priority.

“37% of the respondents cited content marketing as the most important initiative. While that percentage is a plurality, the next highest priority, brand building, trailed with 24% of the votes.”

(Boldness in Content Marketing)

PR and Media Relations Statistics

9) Even advertisers want to invest in PR.

“Sixty-two percent of respondents answered that they planned to increase internal public relations staffing over the next five years and a full 75 percent said they planned to increase overall spending on PR over that same time period.”

(Earned Media Poised for New Prominence)

10) Two sides of the political issue for brands.

“More than half of consumers – 57% – say they buy or boycott brands based on the brand’s stance on a social or political issue…Additionally, 65% of ‘belief-driven’ buyers will not buy a brand if it stays silent on an issue they feel that it has an obligation to formally address.”

(Brands in Politics)

11) Corporate reputation suffers with bad experiences.

“82% of consumers stopped doing business after a bad experience.”

(Marketing without Authority)

12) Emotion in crisis communications works.

“But then the researchers took a closer look at CEO apologies, specifically—16 out of the 29 cases. They found that when an apology was delivered by a CEO who looked sad, the company’s stock price actually rose post-apology.”

(Genuine Corporate Apology)

13) Is PR broadening its horizons?

“87% of PR executives believe the term ‘public relations’ does not describe their future.”

(Future of Marketing)

14) Public relations salaries were flat.

The median salary for PR professionals was $91,000 in 2017, which is a small drop compared to the median salary reported in 2016 survey of $92,125.

Note: This number reflects the combination of both client-side and corporate salary averages. It’s a median NOT a mean. 

(PR Salary Survey)

As the old adage goes, pay for performance and promote for potential.

15) Still got it.  The venerable email pitch.

“92% of journalists and influencers prefer email pitches.”

(State of Media)

16) Pitch in the morning. 

61% of reporters prefer pitches in the morning, 30% in the afternoon, and 9% in the evening.

(Research for PR)

We are, after all, forever students of marketing.

Social Media Marketing Statistics

17) Social media spending grows. 

Senior marketers report spending 9.8% of the marketing budget on social media — here and now. They expect that figure to rise to 13% over the next 12 months – and to 18.5% over the next five years.

(Social Media Marketing)

18) We buy what we follow.

62% of survey respondents said they are either likely or somewhat likely to buy from a brand they follow online.

(Corporate Reputation)

19) Employees have huge impact on social sharing.

Jason Miller of LinkedIn said, “one single employee sharing three items of content a day can add up to 23 million in additional reach over the course of a year. It can add up to 60,000 additional occasions when people engage with your content.”

(Your Marketing Predecessor)

20) The rise of visual search.

Pinterest says it’s 150 million users conducted two billion searches per month and have published 75 billion pins.

(The Old New Media)

21) The sinking confidence of social advertising metrics.

“With the exception of Google search advertising, confidence in digital or social platforms is significantly below 50%.”

(Faux Pas of Social Media)

Paid Media and Advertising Statistics

22) Most marketers are just dabbling in native ads.

Most marketers have dabbled in native advertising – upwards of 90% while just 10% have not experimented.

(Marketing Spend)

23) Non-compliance with FTC.

37% of publishers are not in compliance with FTC guidelines on native ads.

(Marketing Tools)

24) In advertising, we trust.

In 2017, 61% of Americans say they trust advertising which is up from 50% in 2014, according to YouGov study.

(Reinvention of Advertising)

25) Thanks to programatic, “brand safety” is a thing.

“30% of respondents say when they see a brand being advertised alongside offensive material, they believe the advertiser is somehow endorsing that material.”

(Context in Marketing)

26) Online advertising explodes; tops TV in 2017

Internet advertising is a $73B market in the US with double-digit growth.

(Internet Marketing Trends)

Search Marketing and SEO Statistics

27) 10 weeks to see a search benefit from a backlink.

The search experts at Moz say it takes about 10 weeks for backlinks to impact organic search.

(B2B Blog Metrics)

28) The long hard slog to rank in search marketing.

Ahrefs says it crunched petabytes of data to show “that almost 95% of newly published pages don’t get to the Top10 within a year. And most of the ‘lucky’ ones, which do manage to get there, do it in about 2–6 months.”

(Pressing Questions on SEO)

29) Billions of searches.

There are an estimated 3.5 billion searches every day on Google.

(Social Media Matters Less)

Marketing Measurement Statistics

30) Challenges in marketing ROI.

More than 70% of respondents to a survey cited an “inability to attribute top-of-funnel activities to business outcomes” as the top challenge in ROI.

(Proving Value)

31) A marketing seat at the business strategy table.

The survey of roughly 300 top marketers found “60 percent said marketing is viewed by the Board and CEO as a revenue generator.”

(An Effective CMO)

32) Acquiring emails is expensive.

The average B2B company spends $150 to acquire a single email address.

Note: mistakenly, some marketers call this a “lead” which is why it’s so expensive. 

(Content Marketing Successfully)

33) Marketing budgets are poised for growth.

59% of respondents believe their budget will increase over the next year [2018].

(Challenge Marketing Assumptions)


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Photo credit: Pixabay (CC0 1.0)

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