The internet of things, or IoT, is no longer just a buzzword, it’s a trend that content marketers should all be paying attention to.
After the number of connected devices reached a whopping 15.4 billion in 2015, IHS has predicted that this number will grow to 30.7 billion in 2020, and 75.4 billion by 2025. Intel has topped that by predicting there will be at least 200 billion connected devices by 2020.
Plainly put, this technological revolution is no longer something that we can ignore and is especially important if you’re a marketer.
IoT is no longer just helping us tackle those time-consuming, everyday tasks, The internet of things is changing everything from traffic and pollution data to how we predict the weather. Smart devices will only become more in advanced in their ability to give us more control over our lives.
How IoT is impacting content marketing
The internet is no longer something that is only available once you sit down in front of your computer, it is absolutely everywhere. From your television and your refrigerator to the Fitbit you’re using to count your steps, IoT is here to stay.
Marketers everywhere are quickly realizing how much power lies in the data that is being collected by these connected devices every single day and are using it to enhance and optimize their marketing strategies, including content marketing.
How IoT will change content marketing strategies across the globe
Below are just a few things to consider as we look at how the internet of things will require us to adapt to the changing needs of today’s tech-savvy and connected consumer.
- Going beyond the norm. Because of IoT, content will no longer be limited to a simple blog or social media post. Marketers will need to add completely new goals and content formats to their strategies in order to start reaching connected devices. It also means that the metrics we use to measure the success of our content will change too.
- Less content, greater impact. Overall, competition in the content marketing space can be quite fierce and for many content marketing teams, it can be difficult to keep up with content demands while still taking a unique approach that will help their brand stand out. Using the in-depth data available through IoT means that marketers can start producing less content that is highly relevant to a very specific group of individuals.
- Device specific. The beauty of creating content that’s specific to certain devices is that users will be completely engaged with content on that particular device and won’t be as easily distracted by other content and brands, increasing your chances of making an impact.
- Think experiential. Consumers no longer just want to read content, they want to be immersed in an experience with a brand. Smart devices make it possible for marketers to offer consumers content that’s more experiential. What this means is that marketers can adapt their content to the device a consumer is using and what they would want to experience based on their current activity or device interaction.
- Make it fascinating. IoT data makes it possible for marketers to take their content to the next level. By closely analyzing user data and behavior, marketers have the ability to add in facts and stories that they know users would find the most interesting and valuable.
- Environmental and location-based content. With more users being willing to share their location with apps, brands have the opportunity to push out more location-based content that is highly relevant to people in a particular area. This can even be taken one step further by taking the weather in a particular location into consideration and pushing out content accordingly.
IoT content marketing examples
Here are a few examples of brands who are currently using the power of IoT to speak to their customers in a more relevant way:
In an effort to reach consumers about their 12 Pack product. Taco Bell created a campaign that pushed out messages to users who were using GPS apps such as Waze. The first campaign ran on Saturday mornings in an attempt to reach drivers on their way to college football games. They then proceeded to take the same approach on Sundays during NFL season to promote their Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Taco.
Diageo whiskey saw a 72% increase in sales when they used IoT to create a personalized campaign for Father’s Day. The brand connected 100,000 of their whiskey bottles to the internet so that hey could be used to send a personalized digital video message to fathers.
This fast-food chain took their customer service to a whole new level by partnering with Piper, a Bluetooth beacon solution. Customers were greeted on their phones the minute they entered a store and were presented with coupons, surveys, and other relevant content.
This retail brand made it easier than ever to buy the things you need and leave. In partnership with Aisle411 and using Google’s virtual indoor 3D mapping technology, shoppers can search and map products in the store, redeem personalized offers, and earn loyalty points.
User-generated content has always been an amazingly effective way to reach more people and provide new customers with social proof. Fitbit did this by giving users the ability to share their stats on social media, promoting the benefits of their products and reaching a whole new audience without having to pay any additional advertising costs.
The bottom line is that content will need to be far more personal and adaptable to various devices. Data will become even more important as it will ensure that brands are able to provide users with the most relevant and engaging experience possible. As the internet of things changes and grows, it will bring with it a few challenges for content marketers but with the right approach and a willingness to learn, IoT can completely change the content marketing game.
Have you tried IoT content? We’d love to hear your feedback in the comments.