Content marketing as a whole has changed significantly over recent months. The way that the world has been warped by the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting lockdown has had a knock-on effect on all aspects of life. Society has had to adapt to avoiding public spaces where possible, working from home and keeping face to face interactions to a minimum. One means of achieving this has been through shifting life further into the digital sphere. Due to this, businesses have had to adapt to the digital world or risk sinking without a trace. With this rise in competition comes a need to adjust your content strategy in order to stand out. So we thought we would share some content marketing tips to help you as we head deeper into 2021.
However, the value of content marketing is far from a recent phenomenon. It is a branch of marketing that has a proven record for both catching the attention of new leads and maintaining fruitful relationships with your audience. Research shows that content marketing costs 62% less than conventional marketing methods but generates 3x as many leads. Much of this is down to the fact that people like to know the stories that personify their favourite brands. As such, it takes more than flashy branding to truly catch the eye of your audience these days. In fact, 70% of customers would rather learn about a brand through an article than an advert. Because of this attitude and the increasingly condensed competition pool, it has never been more important to have your content strategy spot on.
It is important to acknowledge that each and every brand is different. Therefore, it can be difficult to discern how best to use content marketing to optimise your online presence. Whether it be through keeping up with modern trends, mastering the basic formats or trying to stay one step ahead. Nevertheless, here are some content marketing tips to bear in mind as we delve deeper into 2021.
Take advantage of video’s rise in popularity
Research suggests that as much as 86% of businesses use video as part of their marketing strategy in 2021. This is a significant increase from just 61% 5 years earlier. What’s more, as of 2020, video has now overtaken blogs and infographics as the most popular form of digital marketing content. This shows just how influential video has become recently and it is a symbol of things to come in 2021.
Another factor that will see an increase in the use of video are developments within Google’s search algorithms, which are trying to increase focus on imagery, video and audio content. This isn’t to say that text will become less important – it is the foundation of any good SEO strategy after all – but it symbolises the increasing importance that video will accrue down the line.
Because of this rise in popularity, there has been an increase in the repurposing of written content into video formats. By turning written or infographic content into video, you are really maximising your content in an efficient way. This helps to turn one content piece into multiple. What’s more, this can help adapt certain content pieces into formats that are better equipped for other formats. For example, turning a blog into a vlog or podcast instantly makes it more applicable t social media pages.
Finally, whether you are looking to create a video-centric brand marketing strategy or are simply dipping your toes in the water with your first video series, remember to finetune your video SEO. For content marketing tips on video SEO, read our blog on How To Get The Best From Your Video SEO.
Podcasts are the new blogs
Blogs have always been a popular form of online marketing content. They cover every subject imaginable, from simple how-to information to the wackiest and most extravagant discussions on matters beyond comprehension. As of 2021, a staggering 570 million blogs can be found on the internet. And when you combine this with the fact that companies that use blogs create 67% more leads per month than those without, it is easy to see why. But it seems that we are seeing the rise of a plucky new contender in the form of podcasts.
Podcasts are fast becoming a mainstay in the world of content marketing. Their recent rise can be summarised by by audio media giant Spotify crediting podcasts as the primary reason for a 24% growth in subscribers over 2020. A recent article from Search Engine Journal outlines the fact that Google has made podcasts searchable by automatically transcribing them. As such, with the use of this additional metadata, they will benefit website SEO just as a blog would. Thanks to this, many brands are opting to release content in the form of podcast series (including here at Kartoffel).
Not only are podcasts immensely popular, but they are an excellent vehicle for building relationships with your audience. Fostering an interactive community goes a long way towards creating stronger bonds with your audience (more on that later). Brands can literally address audience queries in follow up episodes, creating an inclusive atmosphere. Podcasts also have the additional benefit of having to deal with less competition. Whilst online blog numbers exceed 570 million, podcasts have a comparatively miniscule pool of one million competitors to contend with.
With only a recording device and basic software required to create a podcast, they are undeniably simple to create. However, that isn’t to say that premium quality sound editing won’t help improve your content. It is important to note that podcasts shouldn’t simply take the place of your blog content. After all certain elements of blogs, such as skipping to relevant sections, cannot be replicated in a podcast. But podcasts’ rapidly increasing popularity is not a marketing strategy that you will want to miss out on in 2021.
For tips on how to get the best out of your podcast, read our blog.
Create and nurture online communities
Nowadays, creating a passionate customer base goes beyond sending out the right brand messaging. The most successful companies in this modern media world are those that create a community around their brand. That is to say, those that actively engage with their audience on a regular basis. Research has shown that customers who are fully engaged represent a 23% premium in terms of profitability and relationship growth when compared to those who aren’t engaged.
When we refer to creating a community amongst your audience, this goes beyond sending out the right messaging to your loyal admirers. it is important that you engage in conversation with your consumers on a consistent basis through a number of channels. This includes comments sections on blogs and social media posts and through email communications. You could also go a step further and respond to customer enquiries publicly through new podcast episodes. Or have loyal customers appear on your website in the form of a video testimonial guest.
People like the brands that they are invested in to be personal. This gives them a humanised touch that helps individuals relate to companies on a more personable level. The arrival of COVID-19 and its widespread effect on the planet led to a drastic increase in the digital presence of companies of every description. This has toughened competition between brands, which in turn has necessitated changes in their approach to content marketing. Creating an atmosphere that nurtures a community feel is an effective strategy for helping your brand stand out from the competition.
Embrace new tech
The technology behind content marketing strategies is in a constant state of evolution. It can be difficult to provide content marketing tips on the matter, as predicting which new tech will leapfrog the rest is no simple task. But video’s recent surge in popularity as a form of content marketing would suggest that the format’s more technical iterations are likely to take the throne further down the line. This is where augmented reality and virtual reality video tech enters the conversation.
We are only just beginning to realise the potential uses of video in AR and VR. However, the prospects of what they could one day offer in a content marketing perspective are something to be excited about. Picture audiences taking tours of your facility or trying your new products without ever leaving the comfort of their sofa. It sounds like something from an 80s sci-fi movie, but it is fast becoming a modern-day reality. Nearly 80% of professionals foresee AR becoming a mainstream form of media within the next 4 years.
But the marketing technology revolution doesn’t stop at AR and VR. In the field of social media, most content marketing tips point towards current functions like stories and developing features like shoppable videos being the content tech of the future. For more insight into the future of social media marketing, read our Guide To Video In Social Media In 2021.
Whatever new technology your industry encounters, ensure that you embrace it. Keeping in step with the modern era or even staying ahead of the curve can be a vivid signifier of your brand being an industry leader. This is particularly true of fields in which innovation is revered, such as the tech industry.
Utilise email as a marketing channel
Email newsletters are a staple tool of any successful content marketing strategy and when looking at the stats it is easy to see why. 73% of marketers have named email marketing as their most fruitful digital channel. But perhaps more importantly, 80% have reported an increase in email engagement throughout 2020. This signifies that, despite being a digital marketing staple for a number of years, email marketing is still growing in stature. As such, it is an absolute must for any marketing strategy in 2021.
One means of optimising your email newsletter campaigns is through the use of video within the email content. It has been shown that the inclusion of video in an email newsletter boosts open rates by 19% and click-through rates by a staggering 65%. These figures outline the power of video marketing embedded within the content of an email campaign.
In the world of content marketing, success is likely to come to those with an ear to the ground. Keeping up with competitors and foreseeing new trends will help your brand give off the right message. New updates from Google suggest that the overall website experience will become key in where your site ranks. Therefore, content marketing should be considered an all-encompassing strategy, rather than being restricted to one format or another.
As we move further into a time where marketing is becoming increasingly digital-based, it is important that companies prioritise their content marketing as a means of both bringing in new audience members and nurturing their relationships with those already loyal to the brand.
For more content marketing tips or if you just fancy meeting for a coffee, drop us a line.