Some experts have claimed that content marketing is the only type of marketing strategy that matters anymore, which is good news for content marketers. But the ever-changing tactics of content marketing have left many wondering: what will the next big trends be for 2018?
The Continued Rise of Influencers
Influencer marketing has been a growing trend over the previous years, starting with celebrity endorsements and evolving into social media personalities and bloggers who have done what many companies struggle to achieve with their marketing campaigns: engage with and develop a level of trust and influence with their audiences.
For 2018, the focus will shift toward turning loyal customers into millions of independent influencers who will advocate your brand for you. The how to this strategy will be key, but all solutions will be rooted in the same themes: recognizing and acknowledging your customers’ needs, and connecting with them to provide solutions.
More Personalized, Customer-Centric Content
With so much content available to the average user on a daily basis, it’s more important than ever for marketers to reach their audience on a more personalized level in order to develop a connection with potential customers. Dynamic, interactive websites, original content, and more highly-targeted ad campaigns on websites and social media are becoming more and more standard in content marketing.
Greater Transparency in Marketing
With popular tactics such as native advertising and brand-sponsored influencer content, consumers are becoming increasingly wary of branded content. Rather than working to disguise this branded content, companies are seeing greater success in remaining transparent and open when it comes to their marketing strategies.
Companies who disclose their strategies but also work to ensure their audience that their message is sincere are more likely to win over their audiences and build a more lasting trust. If you’re working with influencers, encourage them to be transparent about any sponsored content they provide.
“Smart” Content for AI-Generated Experiences
Interaction with Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become a daily reality for many consumers, with virtual assistants such as Siri and Alexa, and interactive voice-activated smart phones and other “smart” devices becoming the norm. Marketers are scrambling to find new, innovative ways to apply “smart” technology toward their marketing campaigns to create personalized, interactive experiences for consumers.
Companies such as Google have already experimented with this tactic using location-based interactions and recommendations.
Content Strategy is Essential
Very few companies actually have a documented content marketing strategy, despite multiple research studies showing that companies who develop and regularly review their content marketing strategies are likelier to achieve success.
Most companies still choose to focus on talking about their products, rather than turning to targeting content marketing and leading nurturing programs that drive greater value to products and services than direct marketing alone.
The continued rise of new, more sophisticated digital technologies will dominate the growing content marketing trends as we move into 2018. Keeping an eye on these emerging trends, looking ahead to new and anticipated technologies, and developing and regularly revising your content marketing strategy are all necessary to achieve success and give you an edge against your competitors.