Content marketing is a well established marketing tool. Some researches state that more than 50% marketers see clear RoI in content marketing. For start ups the content marketing is crucial. It is one of the most important growth channel. But content is a big concept. It includes many formats such as text, graphics, videos etc. The text in itself has many formats such as blogs, tweets, articles etc. There are many platforms and channels to distribute this content and these are ever increasing. This spread by itself poses challenge for marketing. Being great at content marketing was always difficult. There is more content in more formats and mediums with more people to reach out to. That trend is not changing anytime soon in 2017. Here are some more trends for content marketing, that will shape the market of content.
- Specific, concise, personalized:
Most of the content marketers believe that more is better. Large articles have more scope to embed keywords which leads to better SEO dynamics, resulting in higher search rankings and thus they generate more page views. Conventional marketers have always been miffed by it. They argue that if more content was better, then the product manuals would have been the best marketing content. With users getting flooded with so much content, each demanding their precious time, the users themselves are getting impatient. They do not want to spend time, reading through pages, before they reach to the point of the content. They want something small and to the point and something that is relevant to them. The technology to identify and understand almost every individual consumer exists today. It possible to create many marketing personas of multiple segments, if not the individual persona of each customer. In that sense, the content will be more targeted and personalized, instead of mass bombing. Whether it is mail promotion or image, or a video, only the content that appeals to the specific customer will be presented.
- Mobile oriented:
The use of mobile devices to access internet continues to increase exponentially. The availability of cheaper android devices and the ease of accessing information without being tied to a desk, is leading to exponential increase in consumption of online services on mobile platform. More and more content is being consumed while waiting for a bus or while riding a train. The mobile versions of websites are quite standard. However, the trend of building a dedicated app for your domain is rising very fast. A dedicated app gives the flexibility to provide the user with domain’s own unique experience, not restricted by the limitations of the browsers. The app can incorporate unique fonts, security features, navigation features which may not be supported by popular mobile browsers. As the consumption of content on mobile platform increases, it is only logical that content get not only optimized but specifically designed to be consumed on a mobile platform.
- Away from Social Media:
There are a plethora of social media sites and all of them are loaded with marketing content. Today on an average a Facebook user sees a marketing post after every 2 to 3 of regular user’s posts. And if any marketer was true to himself, he would admit that all the marketing posts are getting skipped a lot more than before. Posting more content on social media has become just a point of parity, without bringing any additional click through or any additional engagement with the customers. And almost all platforms provide a standard interface for your content, with no real distinction between you and your competitor (your blog post on twitter looks like any other blog). The industry is almost at the point where the RoI on Social media spend has actually started to decrease. Social media is a great place to gauge the buzz about the product or brand. For content, more and more users are giving it a miss.
- User Generated Content:
The benefit of the User Generated Content (UGC) or User Created Content (UCC) is quite obvious. There is no better ambassador of the brand other than the user itself. User’s review and content carries much more authenticity value than the content that is created by brand managers. The challenge is how to motivate the users to create the content. This is where the social media is getting creatively used by the brand managers. The implicit incentives associated with the prestige or status provided by the buzz that user’s content creates, serves as biggest motivation. It is still a challenge for brand managers to motivate users to create new age content such as a video that shows the product benefits and the users enjoying themselves. As traditional content gets futile, UGC will continue to grow.
- More visual (graphics and video):
As content moves from being created by professionals to being created by users, the format of content will change to one that appeals more to the creators of the content i.e. the users. With Smart phones getting ubiquitous and smart phone cameras getting more powerful, creating graphical content of good quality is within reach of a common person. It’s easier for user to his tricks done with a pair of new shoes rather than write a 200 article about it. And it’s certainly much more fun to create a video. The amateur element in the pictures and video adds to the authenticity and acceptability of the content.
- Paid promotion of content:
Paid promotion of the product has always been around. It may seem counter intuitive. The purpose of content is to promote product. But the content itself needs to be promoted. With so much content scattered out there, it hardly seems surprising. The content needs to be promoted on various platforms, by various media, so that users get to access it over competitor’s content. Brands will spend more on the influencers to promote the content expanding their indirect marketing efforts. This trend will also lead to acquiring of the established influencers to promote only a single brand.