Content marketing came out of nowhere and became the most effective digital marketing technique. Its purpose is to turn corporate websites in niche-specific magazines, where consumers will be able to find useful, interesting and fun content. Since content marketing is a very dynamic concept, each new year brings us fresh content trends that will rule the digital marketing industry.
Video Content Will Dominate
Five years ago, most people thought that content marketing is only focused on article writing. Now, we know that there are many different types of content and that short videos are the most viral of them all. Last year, companies started creating independent visual storytelling strategies, and video became a separate content marketing field that is growing at a very fast pace. In 2017, companies will invest lots of funds in short promotional videos, and big corporate entities and top content marketing agencies will even hire celebrity actors and directors for video shooting.
Content Creation Will Become More Systematic
A few years ago, only content marketing agencies and big marketing departments had content strategies. Small and medium-sized businesses were just creating and publishing articles, graphics and videos. Content publishing process will become more systematized in the next few years.
Since advanced content strategies save marketers’ time and return much better campaign results, even small business entrepreneurs will start building complex lists and diagrams, that will follow content’s path from the original topic idea, to its social media promotion.
Entrepreneurs who don’t have the time or the necessary skills for creating an adequate content strategy will need to hire agencies that offer content marketing services because that will be the only way for them to stay competitive.
Paid Distribution Will Prevail
Since Facebook introduced Facebook Ads platform, they’ve been constantly lowering the reach of regular posts. You’ve probably noticed that the post on your Facebook business page that is seen by few hundred fans, can instantly become viral if you boost it with $10 or $20.
Facebook and other social networks with paid ads options will continue to lower regular post’s reach and in the future, paid ads will become an integral part of the content marketing budget. Although most marketers think this is bad news, in the future they will be able to calculate the exact number of leads each post will reach. This will make content marketing spending more transparent.
User- generated Content is Authentic and Trustworthy
User generated content is authentic, appealing and trustworthy, and therefore it will become a very important part of future content strategies. Guardian determined that 70% of consumers prefer peer recommendations and reviews, over regular written content. Consumers like to know other people’s experiences with certain product (or company), which is why they rely on reviews and websites like Yelp, Amazon Consumer Reviews and Angie’s List.
They are even more intrigued about positive reviews told in the form of photographs, short videos, graphics and other creative forms. In order to use this trend for their benefit, companies need to motivate consumers to share their thoughts, and the best way to do this is by organizing campaigns that will unleash users’ creativity. The best example is Coca Cola’s ‘Share a Coke’ campaign, which produced bottles with customers’ names on the labels.
Episodic Content Keeps Consumers Interested
In recent years we’ve seen how series upstaged blockbuster movies. This came as a consequence of fast video streaming and companies like Netflix that want to keep their consumers in front of the screen.
Content marketing agencies should follow this trend. Episodic content will keep your audience engaged for the longer periods of time, plus its creation is more affordable than the creation of several independent content pieces. The first episode (the pilot) is always the most important, and if it manages to create suspense in consumers’ minds, they will definitely come back for more.
Content marketing’s popularity growth will also affect future search results. In less than a decade, every search query will bring back thousands of good-quality and relevant articles, videos, images, and infographics. This also means that the whole web will become more competitive and that content marketing investments will become an integral part of company’s marketing budget.