For centuries, business owners have applied various marketing strategies to boost up their sales be it by attaching simple stone seals to products with the companies personal identity engraved on it in Ancient Mesopotamia in 4th Century BCE, to using AI or Artificial Intelligence which uses computers and algorithms to detect the behavioural patterns of potential customers to increase sales in current times.
Whatever the trend, one thing is clear. It’s an ever-changing world constantly evolving and those who are evolving with it always stay on top.
The concept of Content Marketing dates back to 1732 when Benjamin Franklin first issued the Poor Richard’s Almanac to promote his printing business (as per Wikipedia).
This concept became an instant hit ever since.
Its popularity can be estimated by the fact that in the second quarter of 2016 alone, Yelp (an online business directory) received 108 million reviews for 3 million businesses.
Content Marketing is basically transferring the real market to an online platform and applying various marketing strategies to make a nice profit out of it.
Wikipedia defines Content Marketing as ‘a form of marketing focused on creating, publishing and distributing content for a targeted audience online.
In just the past few years, a lot of changes have been seen in the strategy of Content Marketing and as ‘evolution is a continuous process’, we can expect some major changes in 2018 as well:
1. Feeling the Content Instead of Simply Reading it
Remember how we relied earlier on books, magazines and newspapers and now on our computer screens for content.
With the advancement of technology, things are going to be a bit different in 2018.
Alexa and Siri have already given us a glimpse of the future, be ready to embrace it, as the future is here.
Content Marketing is actually taking the Content off the screen and weaving it in our daily lives.
We can no longer only read the content but actually see a visual demonstration (discussed in the next point) as well or hear it based on our preferences.
2. Focus More on Video
Visualizing any content will always have a greater impact on customers regardless of their age groups.
It works esp. with millennials since in today’s lazy lifestyle, watching a video hardly requires much effort.
Studies show that 74% of users subsequently bought the product that saw an explainer video about it.
Videos also increase the time a user spends on a website which in turn increase the chances of conversions.
Today you don’t even need to spend a fortune on video creation, all you need is your smartphone and a tripod and you are ready to go.
3. Personalizing the Content to be User-Friendly
Personalizing the user’s content experience is an evergreen marketing strategy that has worked well for decades. It allows one to connect on a more personal level with the customers by prioritizing his or her needs.
It works by collecting personal information about a customer from their earlier visits such as name, email address, etc and delivering relevant content during his or hers next visits based on their personal preferences.
In 2018 as well, a great deal of emphasis will be given on personalizing the content according to customers needs to make them feel welcome and at home.
(I mean come on, who doesn’t want to be treated like a king).
4. Promoting Transparency to Build Trust
Another big change we can expect in 2018 is the way in which brands are advertised so far.
Those days are over when long content was strictly dedicated to glorifying a product or service.
Millennials today expect short and precise content about the product and a way to authenticate it through customer reviews.
They want transparency in their deals and surprisingly vendors also want the same.
Transparency is an essential factor which builds trust between buyers and sellers, eliminating the possibility of any hidden surprises and helps in retaining long-term relationships.
5. Applying Remarketing Techniques
Ever wondered how the product that you searched for last night on a particular shopping site ends up on your social media page? This is called re-targeting and is becoming a trend lately.
Re-targeting is basically accumulating the data related to your previous searched items and displaying those as advertisements during your current web surfing session irrelevant of what webpage you are currently viewing thus encouraging you to make the purchase.
This clever strategy of Content Marketing to improve conversion rates by constant exposure on various platforms will change the way we used to think of our online shopping experience.
6. Influencer Marketing
Influence marketing is another strategy that has been a centuries-old popular technique which is going to have a huge impact on Content Marketing in the upcoming years as well.
influencer Marketing is when you see a celebrity promoting a product and you instantly decide to purchase it based on his or hers recommendation.
This form of marketing focuses on famous personalities to influence the potential customers they are targeting indirectly.
We often believe what we hear from others even if we do not know them, this strategy is being utilized by e-commerce sector to increase sales by providing content via Influencer Marketing.
Throughout history we have seen changes in the working or evolution of Content Marketing, these changes are going to follow in 2018 as well.
Content marketing is a tried and tested formula long since in use. Without it, one cannot hope to survive let alone succeed.
Those who have used it to their advantage are making big bucks.
Author Bio: Paul Henry is an experienced professional in the field of Internet Marketing. His years of experience in the field of SEO, Pay per Click and Social Media Marketing have made him an authority on all things digital. He is currently associated with an Ecommerce web development company, in sunny California.
Paul is also available here; Web Development Los Angeles