Content Marketing

The Top 9 Trends in Content Marketing 2017

First the good news: The number of content marketers, which claim their content marketing efforts are effective, has increased in the last year from 30 to 63%.

But: Most of the shares and likes in content marketing fall upon a few big players, who dominate their respective subject online. The rest is struggling relatively aimlessly and planlessly. At the same time, consumers have less time and higher expectations of the content marketing with which they are supposed to interact: the attention span is short and the offer is overwhelmingly large. Accordingly, only those who produce the best content on their topic will continue to do so.

How to succeed with your content marketing in 2017, you will find in our overview over the 9 largest content marketing trends:

1. More Effectiveness

While some experts predict that many businesses will abandon content marketing because they simply do not achieve the desired success, this opens up more opportunities for those who professionalize their content marketing. Only 37% of B2B content marketers have a documented content strategy, 17% have none. SEMRush also published in July 2016 that half of the sites surveyed had SEO errors such as duplicate content and missing ALT tags.

There is room to grow strategically and technically, even though 93% of the companies are already using content marketing! To make content marketing more professional and, above all, more effective, will be the main occupation of marketers in 2017 – e.g. With content repurposing, more targeted use of niches and better marketing of the produced content.

2. More quality

In today’s content inflation, it is difficult to attract attention and stick out of the sea of content. That’s why it will be essential for content marketers to look beyond the boundaries of the generic 500-word articles and to create REALLY helpful content – and also to market blog content successfully in order to achieve results. The motto is quality before quantity, and Long Form Content before Clickbait! It also goes from content creation to real content marketing. Instead of using the content only for acquisition, we will focus on 2017 to serve and maintain existing visitors and customers with the best possible content. The focus will be on the distribution and promotion of the created content.

3. More staff

In 2017 50% of companies will have created their own vacancy for content marketing. At the same time, the struggle for talents among the suppliers will intensify: Texts and designers, who really understand content marketing, can look forward to more offers and higher fees.

There will be more budget, more jobs and more need for Content Marketing 2017 – because companies are not only planning more output, but also better content that delivers more ROI (Return of Investment). Only those who can combine talent and technology in 2017 will be successful with content marketing.

4. (Live) video

The marketing guru Guy Kawasaki gave in response to the question of the 3 most important trends in content marketing 2017: live video, live video and live video. Video is the Megatrend for 2017. After all, 74% of the traffic 2017 will be in video form! And after YouTube belongs to Google, video content (incidentally also on Facebook) is favored and thus contributes to greater reach.

85% of marketers said in a study of the Firebrand Group that they have experienced positive ROI of video content. According to HubSpot, videos are also consumed most attentively! Live video via Facebook Live or Snapchat also offers the advantage that no production costs are incurred: simply press the recording button, and off you go! This also ensures the necessary authenticity, which brings us to the next big trend:

5. The Human Factor

85% trust content from other people more than that of brands. Every fan, customer and employee is therefore a mini-influencer! Content Marketing will be even more personal, human and direct in 2017. This includes:

• Storytelling (telling stories in marketing)
• Employee Advocacy (employee as brand ambassador)
• User-generated content (branded content created by fans)
• Influencer Marketing (Cooperations with Blog & Social Media Stars)
• Purpose-driven marketing (marketing for the good cause).

In particular, Influencer Marketing is currently being pushed because it promises an up to 11 times higher ROI than traditional advertising.

6. Paid Social & Promotion

2016 was called the year of the adblockers. In the fight for the user’s attention, Native Advertising will continue to play an increasingly important role. And also with the reality of PaidSocial and PaidPromotion, we will have to accept the following: Facebook ads and advertising for content is somewhat paradoxical – after all, content marketing was originally the counter-movement to classic advertising, but it works!

7. Visual and interactive content

We know that visual content is a good thing to do. Content must now also be specially prepared for Snapchat, Pinterest, Instagram and Co. In 2017, however, we will produce even more content types that should be as interactive as possible: instead of in the form of a blog article, the content shows up more and more often as a video, webinar, quiz, game, configurator, calculator, workbook or presentation. The content does not always have to be an evergreen, but may also be short and transient (like a snapchat video or an Instagram story) – the main focus is attention-grabbing and the user is involved.

8. Personalization and niche content

A generic, non-saying blog article for broad target groups soon no longer gets anybody searching for their reading glasses. Deepening content, which not only scratches the surface, is now helping companies to differentiate themselves from the competition Based on solid data, the content becomes more valuable to individual target groups, which may not have such a large volume but a much higher commitment.

In the context of marketing automation and lead generation, extremely tailor-made offers are now being created for small sub-target groups, which solve a special problem for a particular readership. Internet users know that we have their demographics, and increasingly expect us to use them to provide them with a personal experience – the so-called content experience.

And: After the e-mail has been torn down for many years, Newsletter Marketing is currently undergoing a renaissance and is currently the most effective tool to turn prospective customers into paying customers.

9. AR, VR, IoT and AI

No, there is no letter soup exploded: this is about the most future-oriented technologies. Although Augmented and Virtual Reality may not yet have penetrated the market in 2017, it is worthwhile to keep these possibilities in the back of your mind in the future.

The hype around Pokemon Go has shown in 2016 that the users are ready for new technologies. Virtual home visits are just as common as 360-degree videos of hotels and resorts. The Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence will also fundamentally alter the way we produce and distribute content. Machine learning will also improve the tools we use in content marketing and improve the results.

Exciting times ahead! Contact us to discuss your customised content marketing solution.

Got a website? What now.

According to Inc. more than half of small businesses don’t have websites.

“It’s just ridiculous,” says Jim Blasingame, small business author and radio show host. “Every small business needs a website. Period. Non-negotiable.”

Let’s say you belong to the visionaries, Jim would be proud of, what should be your next steps to feature in the digital landscape and generate leads? Because this is what we all ultimately want, right?

1. Google search results

The first question you should ask yourself is: Does my website feature on Google’s hot pages? Where is my website when typing in relevant keywords (remember hardly anybody is typing your business name into Google)?

If you’re looking to boost your website’s Google listing, you’ll want to do some keyword research first. Keyword research helps you to find out which keywords most of your potential customers are typing into Google. The Google Adwords tool suggests keywords for your industry and search volume for that keyword. It will also tell you how many competitors compete for the same keyword. Knowing this you can adjust the content and meta data of each and every page on your website.

2.Blog

Every small business needs a blog. Besides providing a way to engage with potential clients, it also brings more search traffic to your website.

There are tons of websites that remain unchanged each day. But, as a quality search engine, Google likes to feature content which is updated frequently. Google recognises websites with fresh new information by giving that content higher
placement when users search for related topics.

While the pages on your website feature in search results for certain keywords, blog posts give you the opportunity to be Google listed for completely different keywords. Let me give you an example. We offer online marketing support for small businesses – so we craft helpful blog posts about “10 things to consider when getting a website”, “best SEO tricks for small businesses” and “best social media platforms to promote your guest house” and so on.

Guess what is likely to happen when someone searches for “things to consider when getting a website”? You guessed it—if you’re blogging on a regular basis, let’s say every 1-2 weeks there’s a good chance that Google features your posts and consequently your website in search results.

3. Google maps and local search

For local businesses, a strong online marketing effort requires an investment in local directories and maps.

This basically means, at the very least you want to have a marker on Google maps, featuring a correct address. Like this Google Maps allows your company to pop up when people search for a service in their neighbourhood or places they’re planning to visit.

4. YouTube

For those of you who didn’t know, Google owns Youtube. This alone should get you going to create a company video or basic helpful how to videos.

According to Animoto, 1 in 4 customers lose interest in a company if it doesn’t have a video on the website.

YouTube is free and there is affordable video animation software to get you started, Powtoon, Goanimate, Animoto to name a few.

5. Social Media

Now, why should small businesses have social media marketing in the mix? It’s time-consuming and you never got a single customer through your Facebook profile? Because of the way content spreads virally, even to people who are not directly following you. It’s important for lead generation, to get your brand name out there and for credibility.

Research shows when customers discover a business that they know very little about they often check recent updates on social media.

In fact, 63% of consumers who search for local businesses online are more likely to use businesses with a social media presence (Ballihoo).

Deciding, which social media networks will bring you clients depends entirely on your industry. For some small businesses, visuals are more important than for others. Small businesses in the tourism and interior design industry want to post anything from guests watching sunsets on the wooden deck of your guest house, to stylish loft living rooms, using the right hashtags of course. For those kinds of businesses, we are having very good results with Instagram and Pinterest.

Of course, the objective of social media marketing is to make money. Let’s say you are a local restaurant running a mother’s day special. With Facebook, you can get the message out there, by targeting specific groups, such as daughters in your area between the ages of 25 and 40.

After all, people spend more than 30% of their time on social channels where content can be shared, according to a study by AOL and Nielsen.

6. Reviews

During our first meeting usually, right at the start (we haven’t even swapped names yet), small business owners tell us that they don’t need a website because they get all their business through word of mouth.

We fully agree word of mouth is important. So important in fact that

88% of customers have read reviews to determine the quality of a local business. 39% read reviews on a regular basis and only 12% do not read reviews (Search Engine Land). Everything has gone online these days, word of mouth is no exception. We hope you feel inspired to dive deeper into the possibilities of online marketing. If you need help with any of the above, please contact us. We specialise in online marketing for small businesses.