I have been pushing content marketing into my clients faces every single day for the past number of months. Getting them out of the old mindset of marketing and into a new one.
For old school marketers it is tough, for years and years marketers have managed to get away with what is frankly a lazy approach. Shove crappy advertising into the faces of people and force them to consume it. Pre roll videos before content, popups, banner ads…up to recently consumers had no choice but to put up with tactics like that.
The growth of social media has changed the approach and those who are still in the old ways of marketing are going to get caught out very fast over the coming months because content marketing is growing stronger than ever.
Those marketers who currently deploy content marketing are going to find it tough as it gets more challenging. Content marketing is going to be very creating and very visual. Why do you think I have been working so hard on Snapchat and Instagram for the past half year?
If you don’t deploy content marketing at all right now then you are really going to struggle and you have a mountain ahead of you to climb. This is the path we are on right now and what you can do about it.
Creativity is on the rise
Content marketing has given people success through blogging, ebooks and other types of written content. This style of content is going to remain very much in play but it will no longer be enough. So if you are a blogger or an online publisher and you are only playing in the area of written content then you need to get up of your ass and start adding more visual content to complement what you are doing at the moment.
Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook video are all going to be key players, no only does your content need to be good but now it is also going to have to look good and be promoted to a wider audience through a range of platforms. Stick with just written content in 2017? Well you will make it through the year, you may even grow a bit over the year but at some point in the near future you are going to fall over.
Video is no longer “on the rise” – it is here
Stop thinking of video content as being on the rise, the time and the age of video content online is now here. People love videos, they bring the highest ROI and the amount of videos being produced is growing. According to Syndacast, 74% of all traffic will be video in 2017.
Instagram stories, Snapchat stories and Facebook live as well as video on Facebook will all be big. YouTube is a big player too but it is important to note that lots of question are being asked by high profile YouTubers about subscriber issues. YouTube is by no means on the decline of course and it is a platform that your video content should definitely be going up on.
Not comfortable with your face in front of a camera? It wasn’t easy for me at the start of 2016 but I sucked it up and started doing it. I still feel a bit weird at times but people watch and it has an effect on the traffic so I must be doing something right. You need to suck it up and get on with it too.
Traditional advertising will fade to the background
Big, big point to be made about this. At the moment big brands are continuing to pour money into commercials in print and TV ads, the value of which is slowly on the decline.
When an ad comes on the TV one of several things happen, you fast forward if you can, your Dad changes to a different channel while the ad is on or you pick up your smartphone and start checking Instagram or Twitter. People are shifting their attention elsewhere and moving away from traditional ads.
We still see billboards up all over the place at bus stops ect. and meanwhile next to the billboard there is someone standing there with their face buried in their smartphone.
Here is an ambitious statement which may not be true right now at this very moment but is currently happening and I believe will be true this time next year – The days of banner ads, popups, pre-rolls on YouTube…the days of stealing people’s time is over – you may still be getting some return but that return is going to decline over time as content marketing grows.
All these crappy ads don’t provide value, they steal our time which is becoming so precious because of how most of us now live and soon you are going to have to get much more creative and stop worrying about your banner ads or your popups.
For smaller businesses who run Facebook ads it means that they have to make the most of that ad model because when Coca-Cola and Pepsi and all those other big brands realise how much success they can have through Facebook instead then they are going to start pouring $$ into ads on Facebook and the price is going to go through the roof.
If you are a business or an online publication who is not deploying Facebook ads then you are going to miss the golden era of Facebook marketing. Time to get on that too!
You have to get smart about content marketing
Want to keep them coming back for more? Engagement is going to be key as ever. Engagement has always been important but marketers have been able to get away without having to consistently engage to some extent so far. You are going to have to be all over it in 2017.
Engagement is what will bring them back for more. Your content is going to have to be more creative and bolder than ever. You are going to have to produce more content than what you have done so far, you are going to have to take advantage of underpriced ad models before the become overpriced.
The content marketing boom is going to hit new heights over the next 12 months and if you sit there now and think you need to do nothing or just the bare minimum then you will pay for it 12 months down the line when competition in the space will be tougher and tighter than ever before.