From newspaper to online magazines, from word-of-mouth to social media, and from audios to videos, I have seen the ever-changing evolution of content marketing. And it’s not going to stop in 2019.
Of course, marketers and website owners know well that they have to create content for websites, for social media, for guest blogs, and hundred other channels. But as I said earlier, the content marketing trend is changing at a fast pace. What you already know may or may not work in 2019.
2019 is not about changing your whole content marketing strategy; it is more about upgrading your current strategy based on changing content needs of users’ in 2019.
Today, you will learn about current prevailing trends in content marketing, and how to slip them in-between your old strategy for a fresh effective start.
10 Innovative Content Marketing Trends in 2019
Brand’s Voice and Users’ Value
One of my clients requested me to have a quick check on its home page content. I accepted. At one glance, I denied the whole content and sent a mail to my client saying, “This is not going to work.”
Do you know what I saw there?
Content depicting what their company does, how many experts they have, and how their experts are qualified to do the job. No offense. They are just telling what they offer – their brand’s voice. But users don’t want to know about you, they want to know what you have for them.
Companies often confuse this: if they write what users want, what about their brand’s voice. How will they sell the products if they keep creating content for users? This is where the magic begins.
Away is a leading American travel brand with luggage as its main product. Narrow thinking on creating content for a site like this would be “Which luggage you need for big, long travel days?”
But Away is not a brand with narrow thinking. It focuses on a broader approach giving voice to its own brand combined with value to its users.
Here’s one of the popular content from Away:
Did you notice the broad user-focused content of Away?
Now, this is the type of content that reflects Away’s brand and its mission to help users achieve their goals – a beautiful combination each brand required to accomplish.
Personalized and Customized Content
Once I searched for flights from Melbourne to Sydney. I didn’t book the flight. Sometimes I check flights just for passing the time. After a day or two, I received a mail from the agency with the subject line:
“Jetstar Price Alert! Melbourne–Sydney has increased by $294. Book Now”
It’s often. Whether I check flights or hotels. Sometimes they send emails of decrease in prices or sometimes increase. Either way, it creates curiosity in me to book the deal before its too late. Initially, Amazon was following a similar path.
This is what I call personalized and customized content.
Jetstar won’t send the same content to all users. It will send such content only to those who search for specific things – personalized and customized.
Next question is how it will benefit brands?
Being a user, if I see some changes to products or services I am looking for, customized content approach my thoughts to take action. It’s obvious.
Content Input from Employees
I am a great fan of bloggers at Buffer, a famous social media management tool. And their bloggers are not just writers they hired, but also employees engaged in other activities. For e.g. Kevan Lee, Vice President of Marketing at Buffer, create content on a regular basis. In fact, the company has a blog dedicated to Culture where employees share tips on how they dedicate their time to work and manage well to make ends meet.
Most of Buffer’s cultural content is useful for a general audience which spreads brand awareness among people who don’t even have the slightest idea of your business. Later that same people turn into customers, once they find the need to explore more about your brand through your content.
Tip: Set a goal for your employees to create content once a week. Motivate them that they don’t need to be a writer to write content. Simply sharing tips and stories of their work will do the trick. By doing this, you are increasing the scope of reaching a broad range of targeted audience.
Tools to Fuel your Growth
You need 3 kinds of tools
- Tools to add in your products or services
- Tools for your employees
- Tools for your customers
Long ago, I was working for a company similar to Buffer. That company’s owner has a tool mind. Whenever something requires, his first suggestion was to find the tool to accomplish a particular task. Sometimes, it was overwhelming, but I do admire the idea of integrating tools to smooth out some processes.
For e.g. your content team needs a grammar tool to check their own content. Your blogs must have social media integrations to ease the sharing process for users. And your product need added tools to cope up with the growing demands of users.
Make a list of tools your each department needs. Evaluate how this going to fasten or simplify the process. Then only consider adding it in your arena.
Influencers are Content Boosters
Nowadays, influencers are everywhere. In fact, their presence is more as compared to brands. They have more followers than brands. And that’s why they are an easy target to reach your audience.
But you can’t partner with each and every influencer.
Find the one who is relevant to your business, and approach him/her to either share your content or product or tell a story reflecting end-results of your product. For e.g., if you have a restaurant, you can approach frequent travel influencers to share a positive experience with your restaurant.
Brand Collaboration for Rich User Experience
Today, many brands are collaborating with each other to nourish their users with a unique experience. Not only in terms of content, but they are also collaborating at different levels to increase their users’ satisfaction level.
Take an example of Ford and Tinder who build the hottest dating app to raise awareness of their products among the young generation. Another example is collaboration of Nike and Apple to build a fitness tracker – a successful combination of technology and fitness.
If your goal is to create content only, you can collaborate with the brand having a similar targeted audience. Or you can collaborate to achieve more advanced levels as the big brands do.
Users are consuming content from different ways and in tons of formats. Videos, audios, articles, books, snippets, infographics, and the list is endless. Social media channels are also growing with Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok, etc.
Creating content in a single format for a single channel is not enough. Let’s say you can’t rely on a pile of articles to reach a targeted audience. In fact, that is the least you are doing. If you really want to reach your audience, you have to be present everywhere in every format. That means you have to create content for all social media channels in different formats like articles, videos, and audios.
In 2019, it’s not optional, it’s a compulsion.
Big companies can easily create content for all platforms and in all formats. It’s a big issue for small companies or Startups. This is where I advice you to follow Gary Vee who suggest to create different versions of single content. For e.g. he advises you to write a big article from which you can create a video, audio, infographics, podcast, snippets, etc. It makes content creation easier and cheaper for you.
Ever saw those small videos having quick and direct solution to your problem or a one-line answer to your question. Or a motivational quote that make your day. Let me give you an example from my favorite social media influencer Gary Vee.
This is not content; this is a snippet of an article on Expectations by Gary Vee.
In the content world, this is called micro-moments.
You must have noticed Entrepreneurs sharing such content every now and then. Me too. Sharing such moments gain me new followers each time. It takes just a minute to create such type of content. Just share whatever brief tip or motivation line you have in your mind. And you are done.
Chatbots for Personal-level Interaction
Do you know what users care about the most?
A quick easy answer to their question.
Whether it comes from content, from chatbots or from humans, no matter. They just need answers. If not possible, at least they should get a direction towards what they want.
You can’t put a team on work 24/7. Even if you do, companies still complain about losing potential customers because of not attending them on time. Chatbots are a permanent solution to this problem.
Chatbots are computer programs, also known as artificial intelligence, communicating with users through text. Just like humans.
“As per SpiceWorks studies, 40% of big companies planned to use Chatbots in 2019”
Users may have tons of questions, but they always start asking general questions. You can set Chatbots to attend them till the time your marketing executive come to play the role. Or you can set Chatbots up to explore your products or services.
Long-Form Content for Fans
Just because I am ringing the bells for videos, audios, and images, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t create long-form content. They still have the power to grab the attention of highly interested clients. For proof, you must have noticed a big queue on bookstores. It’s evidence that users crave long-form content. It’s just they don’t waste time on something which is not useful.
Trust issues, you know.
Once they get familiar with your brand, they surely would like to read more about it through long-form content. Even some users come online to read in-depth details on whatever they want to learn. So keep creating valuable content. In fact, from long-form content, you can create micro-moments, videos, podcasts, infographics, or whatever format you prefer. It’s a win-win.
Are you ready to upgrade your content marketing strategy? You might be following some of these strategies, and some may be totally new to you. Combination of old and new is what going to give you big advantage over your competitors in 2019.