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How Content Marketing is Evolving Heading into 2018

By Larry Myler

The content marketing landscape is constantly changing and evolving, and while more brands than ever are increasing their budgets, many fail to see the hoped-for results.

Simply publishing blog posts doesn’t cut it any longer, forcing brands to become extremely creative and diverse when building content marketing strategies. Here are four ways I see content marketing evolving in 2018:

1. More effort will be placed on promoting high-quality content assets

They say less is more, and this may be especially true with content marketing. Rather than publishing new blog posts daily, and hoping they gain traction, expect to see more brands focus on publishing high-quality pieces of content designed to help them reach specific campaign goals.

“Watch for more brands to focus on creating more elaborate pieces of content, such as motion graphics, animated explainer videos and long-form case studies. Rather than putting small efforts behind multiple pieces of content, more brands are now allocating larger paid pushes behind higher-quality content,” explains James Neal, Director of The Quad Group.

When you spend the time and money to create an epic piece of content, you want to make sure it accomplishes two things. First, it needs to educate and inform the consumer; second, it must include a very clear call-to-action. Do you want to convert the individual engaging with the content into a lead or a sale? Be specific, but remember to only give them one option because multiple options will greatly reduce your conversion rate. If you believe in the architecture of your funnel, trust it and move prospects along, one step at a time.

2. Content will be created with social media promotion in mind

Social media gives brands the largest platform to not only broadcast their content but to also have their content discovered by new prospects and potential customers. There are a few types of content that perform very well on social media:

  • Micro-video content: The attention span on social media is small, requiring you to deliver your message in mere seconds. Little 15-second creative clips can perform exceptionally well, helping you build brand awareness and drive the audience to a specific call-to-action.

  • Viral images: Consumers love to share social media content, and one of the easiest ways to get traction in terms of sharing and engagement is to post images with viral elements. Brands need to experiment to find out what resonates with target audiences, but once they identify that, it can lead to exponential exposure.

  • Live video: Facebook and Instagram give the option to broadcast live video, which allows brands to provide a unique peek and showcase products or even company culture. Consumers love live video content, so it’s wise to learn how to leverage this quickly.

3. Video will continue to outperform every other format

In my opinion, there isn’t a more effective piece of content than video. If you aren’t currently producing video content you are missing out. Video can be used to demonstrate products and services, or just give the potential customer a deeper view of all aspects of a brand. It allows companies to build trust, which translates into higher sales and more brand advocates.

While YouTube has long been the favorite platform to create a channel and host video content—with Facebook also being an option—Amazon is now taking aim by allowing creators to migrate over to its platform. The most attractive aspect of Facebook is that it has the largest user base, at over 2 billion. Essentially, every potential customer a brand could want to target has a Facebook account.

4. More e-commerce brands will leverage the power of visual content

Many e-commerce brands are now discovering the power of visual content to attract customers. The competition of paid advertisements on Facebook and AdWords is driving customer acquisition costs through the roof, which is causing many brands to create content assets and push them across content discovery channels to attract customers.

Long-form blog posts can also be leveraged, as can infographics, like the example here, that provide information in an easy-to-digest format. This approach is less in-your-face than traditional e-commerce ads, and it can do a great job of educating and informing potential customers about the benefits of a specific product or service.

By including an enticing call-to-action, you can drive consumers that are interested in the offer to a dedicated product page where they can make an impulse purchase. Some of the more popular content discovery platforms to consider are Taboola and Outbrain, both of which offer self-serve options.

A picture paints a thousand words. Video runs at 30 ‘pictures’ per second. You do the math. 2018 is the time to take advantage of this information-packed, entertaining and informative format.

Oracle’s Content Marketing has solutions to simplify the process of creating, distributing and promoting your content. Visit our website for more information. You can also download Measuring the Effectiveness of Your Content Marketing for a 5-step process to prove value and grow your business by creating measurable goals and define your sales and marketing funnels and associated content.

Featured Image Source: Pixabay

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