You must have heard the phrase content is king. Now, that may well be a marketing buzzword but this year and beyond, it’s a statement that has never been more relevant. In a world where consumers are more savvy, more demanding, and more empowered than ever, brands and businesses need to up their content marketing efforts to engage, inspire and convert.
In today’s fast-paced digital world, content marketing is the heart of marketing. When it comes to building brand awareness, connecting with your target audience, building trust and showcasing your authority, there’s no pursuit more powerful. In fact, content marketing has become an almost universal tactic with around 90 percent of companies harnessing its power in 2016, and even more planning to up their efforts in 2017.
But before we delve any deeper, let’s explore a bit.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing covers a broad spectrum but, it’s a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined target audience. Ultimately, enhance awareness, encourage loyalty and increase profitability.
Gone are the years where you can use cheap black hat SEO tactics like keyword stuffing to boost your Google search rankings. In the modern world, highly shareable, entertaining and authoritative content is the key to success.
Content marketing trends to look out for in 2017
With digital technologies constantly evolving, there have never been more opportunities for brands and businesses to branch out to new prospects with innovative and inspirational niche content. Here are the trends you should look out for and use to your advantage this year, and beyond.
- Mobile content: By 2020, smartphones will make up 50 percent of all global devices. By 2018, more than 75 percent of Facebook users will access the platform from a mobile device. Delivering quality mobile optimized content to your customers will ensure long term success this year and in the more distant future.
- Native advertising: As consumers become immune to traditional banner ads, businesses will need to humanize their content marketing efforts and appeal to their customers. According to a study from Audience Network, native advertising will dominate mobile by 2020, making it an essential traffic boosting pursuit today, tomorrow and beyond. Precisely 70 percent of consumers like to learn about products through content – that’s a number you can’t afford to ignore.
- Influencer marketing: 84 percent of digital consumers say that they trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations. By getting an influential person, local personality or celebrity to back your brand you stand a greater chance of connecting with today’s millennial consumers, forging connections, building trust and as a result increasing conversions.
- Marketing automation: Marketing automation is the notion of automating certain actions and tasks to save time and improve the efficiency of your overall content marketing efforts. According to research, companies that use marketing automation to nurture leads enjoy as much as a 451 percent increase in qualified leads. With so many platforms to use social media and email marketing to video and interactive content, the ability to automate your efforts is essential.
Content marketing tools for SMBs
For the small to medium sized businesses, these tools will help enhance your content marketing efforts and boost your success in 2017.
One of the most useful all-around content marketing tools available to date is Kajabi. It makes it easy to build eye-grabbing online courses, membership sites, training portals, file downloads, or any other kind of digital product you can imagine.
Kajabi is mobile responsive, so you don’t have to worry about optimizing your content for smartphones or tablets. It possesses a user-friendly interface that gives marketers the power to get fully creative with the content they produce while managing complex campaigns as efficiently as possible. It’s a joy to use and a potent content marketing tool for any small and medium-sized business (SMB) regardless of your service or product.
Specifically aimed at content marketing for Twitter (if used correctly) Narrow is a potent tool. Narrow works by interacting with Twitter users that are talking about subjects relevant to your target audience. Therefore, it helps you build a focused and valuable following. You can target, analyze, contact, campaign and manage several Twitter accounts with Narrow, which makes it a very handy tool for businesses looking to embrace the digital world.
Clearvoice is a platform designed to simplify all areas of your content marketing efforts. From content strategy to management right through to distribution, and measurement. Not only this but if you need to outsource your workload to skilled professionals that suit your business needs, Clearvoice doubles up as an effective talent network by killing two birds with one stone.
For social media marketing, Buffer is a breeze. You can add your most important social media accounts. The platform allows you to schedule, manage and analyze your content in one central place. It’s easy to the eye, simple to understand, and will really help boost those social media key performance indicators (KPI). An essential content marketing tool especially for social media managers.
Content is indeed king and if you’d like to enjoy the kind of commercial success you deserve then tell your brand story the right way. Make sure you prioritize content marketing this year and beyond. A failure to do so could prove disastrous.