What Will Content Planners Budget For in 2022 [HubSpot Blog Research]

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If you ask marketers about their 2020 content plans, most will tell you they had to pivot because of the pandemic. In 2021, many said the same thing, as the world adjusted to this new normal.

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We surveyed over 600 media planners this year and 99% of marketers who have ever pivoted their content plan did so in 2021, with 39% of them pivoting three times that year.

So how are they budgeting in 2022? Let’s find out.

How much are marketers spending on content marketing?

According to HubSpot Blog Research, 39% of marketers surveyed say they allocate 31-50% of their total marketing budget to content marketing.

This tells us that brands are leveraging content marketing above many other marketing strategies, as they put at least a third of their funding in it.

marketers' quarterly content marketing budget in 2022

Wondering exactly how much? Most marketers surveyed (26%) said their quarterly content marketing budget ranged between $40K to $80K.

The second-highest figure was $100K-200K, reported by 16% of marketers surveyed, then $201K to $300K by 14% of respondents.

The specific amount tells us less about how much importance brands place on content marketing and more about the cost of this strategy.

It would be easy to think that all you need to do is write a few blog posts and that’s it. The truth is there’s so much that goes into content marketing, from copywriting and designing to research and media buying.

If you don’t invest time and money into it, you won’t get much back.

What Content Planners are Budgeting For in 2022

Before we can understand where marketers’ content budgets are going, it’s important to first review their goals.

When asked their top goals for their media planning strategies, 33% said it was to engage and grow new audiences.

The second highest answer was maximizing the return on investment (ROI) of their content.

The remaining goals are as follows:

  • Understanding which channels/platforms their audience spends the most time on (30%)
  • Analyzing the effectiveness of their content marketing strategy (29%)
  • Measuring KPIs across media channels (28%)
  • Understanding which channels or platforms are most effective for sharing their content (27%)

With this in mind, it makes sense that roughly 53% of content planners said conducting market research was their number one media planning investment in 2022 – either to find the most effective channel to reach their target audience or understand the demographics of their target audience.

Because so many marketers want to expand their audience base, conducting market research is the most fitting strategy. How can you market to an audience if you don’t know them?

Running an audit of their content to inform their media planning strategy is another popular investment for this year, revealed in our HubSpot Blog Research. One of the biggest challenges marketers face is understanding the impact of their content marketing efforts.

An audit allows a marketer to review their content, analyze performance, and determine high and low performers.

Which media channels are content marketing focusing on?

With so many channels and channels to consider, marketers say the biggest challenge of media planning is determining the most effective media mix.

Based on HubSpot Blog Research, we know that 84% of media planners leverage a mix of organic and paid media.

In the past year, many marketers have also dipped their toes in new social media platforms and features when pivoting their strategy – two in three media planners specifically.

Instagram Shops and Facebook Shops were the top platforms they tried. With Meta adding so many advanced shopping features to these popular social media platforms, it’s no wonder marketers want to leverage them and increase their revenue.

When asked “Which media channels do you plan to invest the most in this year? ” 14% said paid social media content, which marketers surveyed say, offers the highest ROI and the best engagement of any channel.

Top media channels marketers plan to invest in this year

The second biggest investment in terms of media channels is organic social content, which is used by 43% of media planners. In addition, 9% plan to invest in it more than any other channel in 2022.

Email marketing came out on top as the most leveraged media channel, used by one in two media planners, and offers the third-highest ROI. Its use is also forecasted to grow this year, with 22% of content planners planning to use it for the first time this year.

In the past two years, we’ve faced so much unpredictability, which has kept marketers on their toes, to say the least. This year, it seems content planners are cautiously optimistic and equipped with strategies that will help them grow their audience.

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