Across both B2B and B2C, the largest challenge digital marketers face is reaching their audiences with relevant content. Now that content has become the core vehicle for brands to connect with their audiences, it’s imperative that marketers seek efficient, cost-effective content workflows to engage their audiences – which have fragmented across mobile and social.

At this week’s AdAge Digital Conference in New York, Nestle revealed that its teams produce more than 1,500 pieces of marketing content each day for its 800+ Facebook pages.


What type of investment does that entail? For simplicity’s sake, let’s assume each Facebook post takes 2 hours of work, with 30 mins spent on each of these four steps:

1) Creative and planning of the content
2) Graphic design for visuals
3) Scheduling, legal approval, publishing and community management
4) Amplifying the post to combat Facebook’s diminishing organic reach.

For the moment, let’s ignore ad spend, analytics, monitoring and reporting on post performance, as well as overhead, administrative, licensing and additional agency costs. This means a global brand like Nestle is investing at least 3,000 effort hours a day to bring digital content to their audiences at that scale.

What does that look like from a cost perspective? Again, for easy math, let’s assume the average marketer makes $75,000 a year, works 50 hours a week and spends 50 weeks a year on the job. Annualized, that equals 2,500 effort hours per year per marketer, costing roughly $30 per hour.

At that rate, a large brand is investing $90,000 a day of effort to produce marketing content it can deliver its Facebook fans. While these numbers are simplified, outside-in estimates, the implications of scaling similar output across Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram, LinkedIn and other social channels are momentous, reinforcing why a global marketing giant like Unilever employs nearly 7,000 marketers and brand partners worldwide. Moreover, the resource-intensiveness of brands’ digital content appetites will only grow further with the rise of ephemeral media on networks like Twitter, Vine and Snapchat, where content’s half-life is further diminished.

In our own industry survey work, 79% of marketers cite content creation and sourcing help as one of their top three needs. In interviews with brands and agencies that aren’t currently using Percolate, 51% say their current workflow doesn’t meet the realities of their job, and they need better tools and resources to meet their content goals. These results are consistent with Content Marketing Institute’s 2014 findings among B2B marketers, who cite lack of time (69%), producing enough content (55%) and producing the kind of content that engages (47%) as their top three challenges. Quality content marketing comes with clear costs, and many marketing departments are struggling to keep up with the demands of a changing media landscape.

The data shows there is a large, underserved opportunity to help marketers and agencies with better technology for managing, governing and scaling content.  At Percolate, we’re excited to be leading the charge to create more efficient, effective and audience-centric solutions for the world’s best brands.