If you’re reading this blog post, you’re already bought into the fact that content is the future of marketing. Brands — across industries — are pouring resources into guides, blog posts, infographics, and videos that appeal to their audience’s hunger for education and entertainment.

But here’s the challenge.

As companies pour more resources into content programs, the competition for audience attention increases. There’s already so much content out there, and our attention spans are spread thin. Simply producing great content won’t be enough to forge a 1:1 relationship with our customers. We need to create a 1:1 connection, and that’s where personalization comes in. Here are 7 stats that reveal why.

1. Average human attention span decreased from 12 seconds to 8 seconds between 2000 and 2013.

According to this stat from Statistic Brain, web users are having a tough time concentrating on tasks. It’s likely because they’re (1) bombarded with a lot of information to process and (2) sifting through a lot of irrelevant content. As a coping mechanism, we’ve learned how to process emails, web copy, and blog posts quickly. Great content isn’t enough to stand out — brands need to make an instant connection with their audiences. The answer? Information that is custom-tailored to the reader on the other side of the screen.

2. Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing.

As this stat from Demand Metric points out, content is one of the least expensive customer acquisition tactics out there. Traditional marketing is push-heavy, requiring team members to venture out into the ‘trenches’ with aggressive push-mechanisms. Content marketing brings audiences, leads — and eventually customers to you. Marketers, wanting to fine-tune this engine, will look for ways to drive efficiency and improvements. The answer? Personalization.

3. 70% of consumers prefer getting to know a company through content vs. ads.

As Content Plus suggests in a recent infographic, content provides the ultimate ‘introductory handshake’ between brands and their customers. To really build the connection, however, you need to keep the conversation on a 1:1 level. Brands need to take their content programs a step further to cater to individual customer needs. It’s these 1:1 relationships that ultimately yield conversions.

4. Brands that create 15 blog posts per month average 1,200 new leads per month.

This stat from HubSpot suggests that brands with a consistent blogging program are successful in producing leads. But lead generation isn’t enough to facilitate a transaction. You need to understand what customer wants to bring the sale home. Your marketing strategy needs to fully account for these individual buyer needs.

5. Online content has a 10-20% chance of being successful at driving traffic. For every 10 content marketing pieces developed for a website, typically, only 1 or 2 will drive meaningful traffic.

You put content out there and then? Radio silence. A major challenge that marketers face, according to one article from Forbes is distribution. Personalization can help bridge this gap by positioning your content in front of an audience that is likely to share and engage with it.

6. Average website conversion for companies with defined processes is more than twice that of companies without (5.9% vs. 3.8%).

Content is only part of the content marketing equation, according to a recent blog post from Kapost. In addition to blogging, creating infographics, and producing whitepapers, you need to build out an effective CRM program. Otherwise, there will be a neverending gap between lead generation and the moment of transaction. Personalization can help your marketing team nurture prospects and bridge the gap. Respond to your customers’ specific needs, and they’ll listen.

7. 78% of the most effective B2B marketers are creating more content than they did one year ago, compared with 57% of their least effective peers.

According to The Content Marketing Institute, marketers are increasing the volume at which they are producing content. With increased content production, however, comes a risk that you will lose precision in reaching your target audience -- or you might miss out on reaching new audiences who have the potential to add value to your brand. Don’t let the challenge of scaling up force you to overlook the 1:1 connection that content is crucial to forging.

Your Thoughts

Are you a marketer? Are you launching a content program? What steps does your company take to ensure a personalized approach? Share your thoughts, feedback, and best practices in the comments section below.