Content marketing has come to stay, and spending on content marketing in Europe is expected to triple by 2023. We looked around which trends content marketing managers should keep an eye on in 2020.
Trend # 1: data, analyzes, KPIs
With the increasing involvement in content marketing, managers have to accept the question of the effectiveness of the measures more and more.
As a study by the Content Marketing Institute showed, the most successful companies in content marketing have distinct ideas about what success means in content marketing and how they measure it.
It is therefore essential to define, track and optimize the relevant KPIs based on data.
Content distribution is more in focus
Reach is undoubtedly one of the most critical indicators in content marketing.
Word has got around that creating high-quality content and waiting for someone to find it is no longer enough because more and more company-owned content is confronted with decreasing organic reach.
A large part of the budgets went to content promotion in 2019. This includes measures such as content promotion on social media or native advertising.
SEO factors also play a more significant role in content planning, and more attention must be paid to taking SEO into account in content production.
Trend # 2: influencers
Influencer marketing picked up speed in 2019, and the trend continued in 2020. New agencies emerge, and own tools come onto the market to identify influencers.
Social media stars have more credibility than traditional advertising
No wonder, influencers seem an elegant answer to the problem of reach and credibility in marketing.
According to a recently published study, marketing managers now see greater credibility with influencers than with classic advertising.
Trend # 3: employees as brand ambassadors
In addition to the paid social media stars, the focus is also on employees as brand ambassadors. “All men on deck” could be the new motto in content marketing 2020.
Employee advocacy in B2B key to success
Especially in the B2B area, where personal relationships and networks are particularly important, “employee advocacy” can be the key to success in content marketing. Because employees enjoy special trust within their networks and are therefore particularly credible influencers.
Employees tweet at events and share photos on Instagram, or share their CEO’s articles on LinkedIn. This best practice example for employees as brand ambassadors shows how companies can secure the engagement of their employees in content marketing.
Trend # 4: User Generated Content
In some age groups, smartphones already have almost 100% coverage. With the ever-better technical possibilities to produce images and videos on the go, the amount of content that users publish also increases. Whether on Instagram, Snapchat or Facebook live – users post visual content quickly and mobile.
Fans, customers, employees create credibility and reach
Dedicated fans are the best ambassadors for many brands, and so they encourage their users to produce content, for example with interactive hashtag campaigns.
Competitions, competitions, votes, etc. on social media not only generate user-generated content but also ensure reach, interaction and credibility.
The task of those responsible for content marketing will increasingly consist of viewing and curating user-generated content.
Trend # 5: integration of social, blogs and websites
For a long time, the focus in content marketing was on blogs as the primary publication source, but now the tables are turned. With the integration of users into content production, publishing increasingly takes place on social media. Companies like Coca-Cola are already using Social First Publishing.
The website becomes social
The art will be not to let the conversations take place in isolation on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, but also to bring them to your website.
One way are social media newsrooms or content aggregation tools such as Flockler Social Hub. Social media content can thus be published on the website next to editorial content.
Inspiration and information in e-commerce
On e-commerce websites, content beyond pure product content is gaining in importance. For e-commerce, content marketing can be the sweet spot at the interface of SEO, link building, social media and customer interaction.
Shops, for example, integrate inspiration from Instagram into their shopping sites and at the same time, create credibility with the integrated likes of users. Editorial content such as buyer guides or information about travel destinations such as centre parcs cover long-tail keywords and bring traffic to the booking pages.
Trend # 6: chatbots
“Why do Chatbots suck” was the title of the US industry magazine Techcrunch. Chatbots, according to the author’s criticism, are not yet mature enough to answer complicated questions.
But with Siri and the messenger bots on Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter, we are already getting used to communicating with bots.
Applications in a minimal framework are easily conceivable in content marketing and social media. Chatbots can, for example, depict interactive content with which users have previously interacted via questionnaires and voting on social media.
Chatbots as service and sales staff
Chatbots can also be used to explain complex topics such as buying a house exhaustively. A chatbot can support virtual sales and replace and supplement tutorials, background articles and much more.
In Customer Service, chatbots can answer FAQs, for example, so that customers no longer have to struggle through FAQ lists.
Trend # 7: Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
The buzzwords of recent years – Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality – are becoming applications with real benefits, including in content marketing.
Virtual Reality: create virtual worlds
With virtual reality, you can create virtual worlds, and the content can be experienced. The real estate industry has been relying on virtual 360-degree tours for years, and the virtual apartment tour is no longer a dream of the future.
With 360-degree videos from extreme sports, RedBull manages to bring a whole lifestyle to YouTube.
Augmented Reality: Content takes place in new places
Pokémon Go’s success this summer shows how quickly users can be ready to adapt and interact with new technologies. The companies that managed to submit their location as a PokéStop or as an arena were pleased to receive more customers.
What does that mean? With augmented Reality, the content will take place in new places beyond blog, website and social media.
Technology continues to evolve, and in 2020 content marketers will find new, valuable applications for users.
We keep our eyes open.