The start of a new year is the perfect time to revisit your content marketing strategy and make changes that will deliver the best results. As content channels evolve and audiences become more sophisticated in their consumption, it is vital to stay on top of the latest developments. Consider these your five content marketing new year's resolutions!
1. More paid, less organic content
It was well reported throughout 2016 that the organic reach of content, and a demise in the rate of content sharing, is leading to an increase in paid promotion. Experts such as the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) CEO Joe Pulizzi predict advertising on social channels and professional networks, together with native advertising campaigns through platforms such as Outbrain will continue to grow. This is in part due to changes made to search algorithms at Facebook, YouTube and other social media outlets which have affected organic traffic. The outcome of this means businesses need to continue to invest in maintaining quality, relevant content on their owned platforms such as websites and blogs to build brand engagement, but ensure paid promotion is also factored into the 2017 content marketing strategy to create and grow an audience.
Resolution #1:Nurture and invest in your owned content channels, but budget for more paid promotion.
Tip #1:LinkedIn will surpass other social media platforms as a B2B content marketing platform.
2. Email still rules
Email was recently voted the most important B2B distribution channel when it comes to achieving marketing results, according to the latest CMI research. What does this tell us? Indeed, email marketing is not dead! In fact, with the ability to leverage sophisticated audience segmentation, email continues to be one of the most effective ways to engage with targeted groups. What content marketers will need to focus on in 2017 is ensuring their eDMs offer a visually pleasing and pleasant user experience, gently leading your audience back to your owned content on websites, YouTube and blogs where it goes without saying they will interact with innovative, surprising content that hits the mark.
Resolution #2:Develop a suite of simple, beautiful emails that are easy to navigate.
Tip #2:Pay the extra money to remove references to your email tool (MailChimp etc) – it just adds that extra level of professionalism.
3. Influencers will be even more influential!
Who do you respect more when it comes to learning about the pros and cons of climate change? Your mum? Taylor Swift? Or a published expert, with a PhD in the field? As organic marketing loses its reach and adblockers prevent paid promotion, influencers will become more important to successfully build the credibility of your brand. To get the most return from this investment brands will no longer turn to major celebrity candidates with large followings yet minimal relevance to their products. Opting for micro influencers who add authenticity and genuine affiliation to their message will encourage the growth of a solid following and brand affiliation. Recent studies by TapInfluence report influencer-based advertising is 11 times more effective than traditional methods at reaching a new audience, driving campaigns and increasing credibility.
Resolution #3: Cultivate a list of relevant contacts that grow brand credibility through a genuine affiliation with your product and relevant, expert knowledge.
Tip #3:Avoid mass marketing, as consumers navigate the overload of content they search for influencers who genuinely care about the same issues as they do.
4. Mobile friendliness
2017 is set to see interaction with content across mobile devices continue to overtake desktop as consumers consistently access content on the go. It goes without saying this means visually pleasing, easy-to-navigate, quality content is essential to growing your brand and keeping consumers intrigued.
Resolution #4:Make mobile friendly content a priority for your 2017 content marketing strategy.
Tip #4: Ensure your content is easy to read and interact with across all mobile devices including all smart phones and tablets.
5. Multimedia (more video etc, interactivity)
Attention spans are at an all time low and there has never been a more important time to say more with less. Multimedia, visual content achieves exactly that. As technology improves there are endless options from images, videos, GIFs and live streaming. Each style can add real time authenticity to your product or service.
CMI reports conclude 81 percent of marketers have noted a greater effectiveness with interactive content than static content. A statement supported by Facebook statistics that indicate 500 million people watched a Facebook video each day over the past two years.
Resolution #5:Create visual content that is accessible across various platforms and gently redirects users to owned content on your website.
Tip #5:Consumers enjoy content they can be a part of. Interactive content is the best way to increase interest and grow your brand.