How the latest content marketing trends will impact marketers in 2017.
Countless businesses have come to realize the incredible benefits associated with content marketing, which is why this tactic has become an integral part of marketing strategies around the world.
According to the Content Marketing Institute, 70% of B2B marketers are planning to create more content in 2017 compared to 2016. At the rate that marketing and technology are evolving, it’s critical for marketers to stay up to date with the latest trends if they want to stay ahead of their competitors.
12 Key content marketing trends to be aware of in 2017
If content marketing is a core part of your 2017 strategy, below are the trends that you should be keeping top of mind.
1. Mobile content
You hear it all the time, you need to give your customers a great mobile experience if you want to keep them coming back but this is going to become even more important from 2017 onwards.
Along with having a mobile-friendly website, marketers will also need to create content that’s geared towards the mobile user. This means that image quantities and sizes need to be kept to a minimum, text should be short, to the point, and engaging, and more videos should be incorporated into content plans.
In fact, by 2020, at least 75% of mobile traffic will be linked to video, emphasizing the importance of exploring new types of content that can be easily consumed on a mobile device.
2. Native advertising
Classic banner advertising no longer offers the same results that it used to. Today, banner advertising is seen as a nuisance and the use of ad blockers is on the rise, but brands still need to generate an income, which is where native advertising comes in.
The reason why native advertising works so well is because it matches the look, feel, and style of the website that it’s published on. Website visitors experience and consume native advertising in the same way that they would experience the site’s actual content.
According to a study by Audience Network, native advertising will make up the majority of mobile by 2020, making this an important trend to explore if your business relies on online traffic to generate an income. Read our latest article on native advertising for more information on this trend.
Native Ads example – HYT Watches (Campaign run by Upfluence)
3. Influencer marketing
Getting an influential person, local personality or celebrity to back your brand is a powerful marketing tool, especially if you’re trying to reach millennials.
84% of consumers say that they trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation, so getting someone your consumers trust or look up to involved with your brand is a great tactic for creating new, engaging content that they’ll respond to.
Consumers respond to authentic stories and influencer marketing is one way to offer that to them.
Influencers’ posts examples – Frederique Constant (Campaign run by Upfluence)
If you would like to read more about how you can use influential marketing in conjunction with your content strategy, read this blog.
Your customers are all different, they have different preferences and fall into different demographic groups.
With so much content available to today’s online user, they can easily find exactly what they’re looking for, which is why content that’s aimed at a general audience is no longer the best tactic to use if you want your brand to stand out.
In order to make your content marketing as effective and engaging as possible, marketers need to have a segmentation strategy in place in order to provide their users with highly relevant and personalized content.
Personalization increases engagement rates by up to 62%, making this an important trend in 2017.
5. User-generated content
User-generated content (UGC) is any content, including videos, reviews, blogs, and photos, that have been generated by a platform’s users.
Social media is the best example of an area where UGC reigns supreme. To put it into perspective, 684,475 pieces of content are shared by Facebook users every single minute.
A report by Social Annex shows that 70% of consumers trust reviews written by other customers above professionally written marketing content. 2017 is the year that UGC will become more important than ever.
It’s up to marketers to ensure that they’re identifying as many UGC opportunities as possible if they want their brands to thrive.
Encouraging user-generated content is also an incredible opportunity to get to know your target audience better in order to better cater to their needs going forward.
6. Interactive content
A survey by the Content Marketing Institute shows that 75% of marketing participants said they anticipated that their company would increase their utilization of interactive content marketing in 2017 and beyond.
The core benefit of interactive content is that it adds more value to the user experience and offers more opportunities for engagement, both of which are extremely important in order for a brand to succeed.
Buzzfeed is a great example of a brand that gets interactive content right. Their content either answers a question, solves a pain point or helps a user learn more about themselves.
Luckily, with the increase in interactive content, there are a variety of different tools available to brands that are looking to delve deeper into interactive content, making this type of content development a lot simpler and more affordable.
Interested in reading more about interactive content? Read through our data visualization blog here.
7. Marketing automation
Marketing automation is the process of automating certain actions and tasks in order to save time and improve efficiency.
In an age where consumers demand a more intuitive and personalized experience, marketers need to seriously consider implementing marketing automation across areas such as email, social media and e-commerce if they want to survive in a competitive and fast-paced market.
8. The internet of things
Come 2021, Cisco predicts that there will be around 929 million wearable devices globally.
Users are no longer restricted to laptops, tablets, and mobile devices, and it won’t be long before marketers who aren’t considering wearable technology when developing their content marketing strategies, will fall behind.
Learning how to create micro-content and how to use text alternatives to get a message across should be a top priority for all marketers and businesses that are serious about changing with the times and staying ahead in their industry.
It’s also important to keep track of your target audience’s preferences to better anticipate when you should start incorporating wearable technology into your content marketing strategy.
9. Virtual reality
In 2016, there were already 43 million virtual reality users across the world and this number is set to increase exponentially from 2017 onwards.
Marketers are going to have to start thinking in a whole new way when it comes to developing visual content if they don’t want to miss out on capturing a massive audience.
When you think virtual reality, think experiences. Virtual reality is a great way to immerse your customers in your brand and drastically increase your engagement rates.
71% of consumers think a brand is forward-thinking if it uses virtual reality, giving marketers an excellent opportunity to win new customers over in 2017.
10. Improved search engine algorithms
RankBrain is an AI system that’s used by Google to process their search results. This system forms part of Google’s overall algorithm in order to make the process of sorting and understanding billions of pages a little easier.
Google’s made a lot of changes to their algorithm over the years and you can bet that we’ll see many more changes in the years to come. If content marketing is important to your brand, you need to stay abreast of any and all algorithm changes in 2017.
Google’s always on the lookout for content that will best answer a searcher’s questions so it’s up to marketers to develop their content with this in mind. How can you best cater to your target audience’s potential questions and queries with innovative, unique, and engaging content?
11. Social media commerce
As social media grew and evolved, brands found a whole new way to do more business online. Social commerce came about when brands and their customers starting using social media platforms for e-commerce transactions.
According to Statista, spending on social media platforms will equate to around $17.43 billion by 2019.
In order to get a piece of this billion dollar pie, content marketers need to ramp up their social media efforts in order to build better relationships with their customers, which in turn will encourage sales.
12. Content syndication
Marketers need to produce more content than ever before but syndication helps make this a little easier.
Content syndication is becoming more popular because it not only allows you to get your content in front of new audiences but it helps fill content gaps too.
This is a great way for content marketers to become more efficient, increase their promotional efforts and position themselves as experts in a particular field. It’s really important to find a good mix between original and syndicated content though as users still need to feel like you’re providing them with value.
Design and production of an infographic based on facts, figures and data shared in 2 technical articles – Sopra Banking (Campaign run by Upfluence)
Content marketing is evolving at a rapid pace and it’s up to marketers to stay ahead of the curve if they want to stay competitive. We need to keep technology top of mind in 2017 and beyond as it’s playing a major role in how content marketing is changing.