The marketing landscape seems to change daily with the sheer amount of information accessible online, the types of new social media emerging on the scene, and customer’s demand for constant engagement and stimulation. The most successful players in the marketing game are those who meet and exceed modern standards, stay current with the latest trends, and even find ways to get ahead of the curve and become trendsetters and visionaries themselves.
Staying up-to-date seems like a job in itself, but it’s doable for any business that has a willing attitude and is ready to whip its content marketing strategy into shape using these top trends as a guideline:
Make it Mobile
More so than ever before, mobile-friendly content marketing is a must. The possibilities for mobile content are endless, given the number of people who use mobile devices as their sole means of receiving information, like the 79% who use their smartphones for reading email instead of their computers.
It’s not enough that readers can see your “desktop” site on their phone. It’s become critical that successful brands build mobile-specific sites that aren’t just made for reading but are designed for interaction, sharing, and seamless access to your content, products, and services. Your audience wants to read, learn, and purchase/subscribe all from their mobile device. If your site doesn’t have this functionality, you’ll soon be abandoned for a competitor who gives consumers the mobile access they demand. Focusing on mobile content gives your customers the capabilities they want and gives your company the ROI you want from your marketing efforts. Win-win.
Consumers are more attracted to visual content with each day that passes. From video to infographics, your content will be cutting-edge when your team emphasizes the importance and benefits of visual marketing. The key to success in your content is to mix it up. Walls of text are boring; however, news sites that have made the switch to video-only have lost users who want versatility. Keep this in mind when creating any kind of content for your site. Make sure that you’re stimulating your audience on a variety of levels and that whatever medium you use provides your followers with high-quality content. No exceptions.
The most engaging content mix is one that combines a variety of mediums, with a non-trivial portion dedicated to video, infographics, photojournalism, and illustration. Even podcasts, which aren’t technically a visual tool, are yet another way that brands can deliver content as part of a multi-faceted strategy.
Social media is nothing new in today’s business climate, but these channels continue to make up a significant portion of smart businesses’ content strategy. Growing your social media goes beyond signing up for each new platform that becomes available – it takes savvy to create the type of content that engages your followers and inspires them to act. Having a team dedicated to all things social is not uncommon for larger companies who want to harness the power of Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, YouTube, and Pinterest, among other up-and-coming platforms.
Social media is just that – social, meaning that it’s not enough to simply tweet or post content. The most influential brands on social media are those that interact with users through their comments, ask questions of their followers to start a dialogue about hot issues, weigh in on other people’s conversations, and who aren’t afraid to post links to competitors who are doing things that will also interest their own audience. These tactics all make your brand more accessible, relatable, and less intimidating to your customers or prospective clients.
The hottest brands right now are ditching the façade of perfection, and consumers are responding in a big way. Being real with your customers by showing your flaws, imperfections, and insecurities makes your business relatable – big time. Just like the people we are most naturally attracted to are those put us at ease and with whom we can identify, today’s customers most easily relate to businesses that aren’t afraid to be open or vulnerable—businesses that choose to eschew the notion that they are perfect and therefore live in a different world than the rest of us.
Despite what many companies think, you can successfully gain subscribers, sell widgets, attract clients, and beat out your competitors without being fake. In fact, today’s savvy audience can spot inauthenticity a mile away, and your business is liable to be scorned and dismissed if you come across as being fake.
What does this mean for your content? Write from the perspective of a real person, show off the individual voices of your team, engage with your audience, admit when you’re off your game, and give credit to others who are performing well.
The latest trends in content marketing are easy to apply to your business when you do it in a way that’s meaningful to your audience and true to your brand. If you want more guidance from people who specialize in bringing their A-game to content marketing, contact us to discover the ways we can work together to get your content on trend.