After trying everything you could to make people read your content and provide you with some awesome feedback about the work you put in, it seems like the people just don’t care about you or your blog. There is null engagement from them, seriously zero.
And you really don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.
So you read and learn everything you could from the hundreds of ‘The Ultimate Content Marketing guide’ present on Google(I know you have) and start implementing them in your new marketing strategy in the hope of getting your content ‘found’. But after days and months of strictly following what you read, to your dismay, there is still no significant increase in your reader base.
And you ask yourself why, why me? Why no one wants to read my (awesome)content? Do I really belong here? Am I worthy of a new reader’s attention?
You begin doubting yourself.
Which is a deep pit that you jump in…..as you will doubt yourself again before giving your content marketing strategy another go or starting with a new one altogether.
Don’t doubt yourself, there is no problem with you or your content.
The problem is with the fast changing content marketing scenario. The content trends keep changing so rapidly that keeping up with them seems like a far cry sometimes, even for me.
The dynamic nature of content is what you have to shake hands with if you need to get a couple of more eyes on what you write.
Just reading 1–2 year old marketing guides won’t do(I am not saying that you shouldn’t read them, they still give you a broad idea how content marketing works) It’s obvious everything around content would have changed and the then stated strategies would not hold true to the current marketing scenario. You’ll have to read and do what’s trending ‘right now’.
But if you sit down to read what’s trending in content ‘right now’, by the time you’ll understand the trend and be ready to implement it on your blog, it would still not generate as much buzz as you’d hope.
Take infographics for example, how many of them do you see now? Maybe 1 or 2. How many of them did you see around 6 months back? Honestly, I don’t know about you but my entire twitter feed was filled up with them back then.
And after seeing so many infographics all of a sudden and reading 100 blogs that adviced me on start building them as soon as possible, I hoped on to the infographic bandwagon as well, hoping that it would generate some much needed buzz for me.
I won’t deny that it didn’t generate traffic, it did (a lot, the most actually)
So, I tried it again after a week and by that time the trend had already started fading, resulting in much lesser traffic while I expected much more from it.
Who is to blame? While those blogs that adviced me to create infographics in the first place still existed, they were of no use to me anymore as the trend changed. But new marketers still continue to search for what will work for them and those blogs which compelled me to create infographics, will compel them to create infographics as well if they stumble upon one.
It’s a vicious circle of creating outdated content. And outdated content just doesn’t work.
To check this, I recently created another infographic and marketed on the same platforms that I did my previous ones and the results were shocking (yeah, I understand there are a lot of factors that can effect the overall traffic generated by a blog, but still I couldn’t believe that it plummeted so much)
Facing the tide of time, the once most trending thing in content started fading really quickly and proved to be of no value after just a few months.
So, to make the most out of your content marketing strategy everyday you need to think ahead of time.
Predicting future marketing trends and preparing for them at an optimal time is the key here. You can collect the data yourself and make your own predictions or you can rely on the biggies, such as CMI, who have the resources to mine data and predict upcoming trends.
You’ll have to study in depth about each one of them, view their sources and then analyze.
Analyze if you can vouch on that prediction or not. And then set your future course of action and research to make the most out of that prediction when it finally matures, it’s a long shot. But it’s worth it.
(Take your analyzer glasses out)
So, here are my Top 3 predictions of what will work in the fast changing content marketing scene in 2017-
The Rise of Paid Promotion and Declining Organic Reach
This has been continuing for years, but I expect it to continue to be a major content marketing trend in 2017.
Earlier this year Instagram introduced an algorithm based feed, rather than a chronological one. Instagram’s reasoning says that as the photo-sharing app becomes more popular, there is simply too much content being published, and people miss what matters to them.
This story is not just about instagram, but the entire web.
By introducing an algorithm, the feed is “ordered to show the moments we believe you will care about the most”. Maybe this is true. Instagram wants to keep people engaged and on the site. But it has a side effect: much like Facebook before them, it allows Instagram to curate what goes into feeds.
This introduces the possibility of reduced reach for brands that don’t pay. The changes brought about by Facebook mean that organic reach is greatly reduced from 15% to as low as 2%. As networks face demand for returns on investment, I expect advertising options to increase, and advertising spend to increase to get in front of the customers.
Storytelling is the new fad
Storytelling has emerged as a key part of content marketing in the past few months and is now a widely recognized trend in the whole content marketing scenario .
Good storytelling in business is more than just a case study. This also highlights that audiences are beginning to get tired of the idea of content for content’s sake. Simply blogging to have a blog or updating social media for the sake of it won’t cut it anymore. You need to engage with your audience and tell them a story.
Apparently, telling a compelling story entices the reader and he is compelled to read the story till the end. So, to make the most out of your content in the coming year, implement and mix both your personal and professional life into your blogs to engage readers and show them who you really are.
Increase in Multimedia Content
I have said it before and I will say it again, content has become increasingly visual over the years. Marketers realized long ago the power of an image. The power of video has been evident on Facebook in the last two years, with 500 million people now watching a Facebook video every day. These are well-established forms of media, but it looks like several more are on the horizon.
GIFs are becoming more popular, with Giphy recently raising an additional $72m in funding. Pokemon Go showed us the possibilities with augmented reality. Several virtual reality sets have gone on sale this year. Facebook has rolled out 360-degree photo publishing. Several companies including Youtube, Facebook and Instagram have already started broadcasting live videos.
In this competitive content arms race, expect early-adopting brands to experiment with a lot of these new forms of media in the coming year.
Over To You
Content is still the best way to build trust and authority for yourself or your brand. But it’s seriously dynamic in nature. You can not keep producing the same content over and over again and expect it to deliver for you. I learned it the hard way.
The essence of a successful content marketing strategy lies in providing value to your readers and readers want to read what’s trending. So, start early and recognize and learn upcoming trends and grab opportunities as they come.
Don’t wait for a content marketing trend to mature to deliver your awesome content about it. Gain authority before the trend gets overcrowded with everyone writing about them.
Make your voice heard before everyone start shouting.
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