Nobody has a crystal ball that will actually tell them what’s going to happen in the coming year, but it’s a pretty safe bet that when it comes to marketing, content will still be king. Beyond that, shifting trends, new technologies and changing consumer behavior require a constant reevaluation of your content marketing strategy, and there’s no better time to do so than at the start of a new year.
The Future of Content Marketing
We have consulted with the experts and determined which content marketing strategies are most likely to have an impact in 2020. Here’s what we learned:
- Video remains very popular. If you think that Facebook is the most-accessed consumer media platform, guess again. That distinction actually goes to YouTube, visited by 73 percent of U.S. adults (versus 69 percent for Facebook). This perfectly underscores the seemingly unending popularity if video. Marketers who want to expand their reach must invest in video; it’s important not only to upload content to YouTube, but use the right keywords and meta tags. You’ll also want to optimize video for mobile devices, which are seeing significant increases in web traffic year after year as 5G data services continue to gain inroads. Finally, distribute your video content across multiple social media channels for the best reach.
- Voice search is on the rise. Whether you “talk” to Alexa, Siri or Google, odds are you use voice search at least occasionally; in 2020, some analysts predict voice search will overtake traditional search inquiries in terms of popularity. For marketers, this means a shift in SEO and keyword strategy will be in order. You’ll need to emphasize what are known as long-tail keywords (3-4 keyword phrases specific to what you are selling) in order to drive organic search traffic to your site. Because AI-powered devices rely on algorithms that exclude results that don’t very closely match consumer inquiries, this requires a focus on more natural language.
- Google is still hands-down the top search platform. Dethroning Google from its top spot as the most popular search engine remains an uphill battle few competitors seem capable of handling. Currently, 96 percent of all mobile search traffic is driven by Google; this has a direct impact on the number of mobile users visiting your site. It’s more important than ever to invest a large portion of your marketing budget into SEO, SEM and search-based efforts.
- Promoting brand awareness is crucial. Though it may sound dramatic, if consumers don’t know who you are, you’re doomed to failure. 86 percent of B2B marketers used content marketing to improve awareness of their brand in 2019, and there’s no reason to think those numbers will change in 2020. Companies that focus on creating content designed to raise consumer awareness will see a payoff in better customer relationships and, by extension, greater marketplace success.
Focus on your target audience. A target is defined as an object of attention or aim of an attack; common sense dictates that your “target” audience will respond best to content that is geared toward their specific needs versus a more scattershot approach. Today’s consumers are far more adept at spotting inauthenticity; if they aren’t strongly engaged in your company or product, their allegiance will prove fleeting. Design organic content marketing around their needs and you’ll earn their trust (and dollars).