When beginning to promote your new business, there are a wealth of marketing options available, both online and offline. With a lower cost than traditional advertising and a higher conversion rate, young brands are increasingly considering content marketing as a way to develop natural growth and presence.
For entrepreneurs and startups, content marketing is the most economical and effective means of building brand awareness amongst consumers, as it allows the brand to become a voice of authority on relevant subjects, thus building trust in the business and product.
However, the content marketing industry is constantly evolving, and the savvy entrepreneur must not only keep up with the latest trends, but also be able to harness them effectively. There's no point of jumping on the bandwagon of live video, only to get a limited number of views on the stream. While the industry is moving fast, careful thought and planning before approaching any new aspect of content marketing will always pay off.
According to new research by Kaizen.co.uk, the future of content marketing will comprise of three overarching categories: video content, immersive content and added value content.
Within each of these, there are plenty of different ways to approach each medium, but what entrepreneurs of 2019 must remember is that interaction is the key to the future. New technologies rely on audience engagement, and pull away from the flat-screen viewing that has so far dominated online use.
Video content is set to occupy 74 percent of internet traffic, and it has been identified as four times more appealing than written copy. Interactive video, such as those that let you click on aspects, or change the course of the video based on interaction with it, adds an extra layer that makes it more engaging and relevant to users.
Another option is to produce reactive video, or content that responds to a particular event or trend, harnessing the media’s attention for it (although it's always important to approach reacting to topical conversations sensitively).
Live video is a huge recent trend showing no signs of stopping. Just look at Instagram Live and Facebook Live, which have 200 million and 360 million regular users, respectively. Eighty percent of those surveyed would rather watch live video from a brand than read a blog.
Also known as livestreaming, this allows the hosts to use comments or reactions to the video to guide its content.
Virtual reality (VR) drives a 17 percent higher emotional response than 2D experiences, and people are 29 percent more likely to view a VR video than the same video in a traditional format. What's more, the growth of the industry is incredible. In 2014, 200,000 people worldwide had VR technology. In 2016, that number grew to 43 million. In 2018, it's currently 171 million.
Augmented reality (AR), unlike the majority of VR content, doesn't require specialist hardware, as games like Pokemon GO can be played through a mobile phone. In 2017, 0.5 million AR headsets were shipped worldwide, and 27.3 million are projected to be shipped in 2021.
Snapchat filters (that alter the image of your face) are a good example of MR, and have proved particularly popular with younger age groups. This makes mixed reality a form that entrepreneurs who want to target the millennial demographic should definitely consider. Ad spending across VR, AR and MR hit $12.8 billion in 2017, and is forecast to accelerate to $143.3 billion in 2020.
360 can be video or static content, explored by the user to a greater extent than normal. Price wise, 360 video cameras are cheaper than many mobile phones and no more expensive than non-professional photography cameras.
A common form of native advertising is a sponsored article, which looks like standard editorial content, but is actually paid for. Twenty six percent of desktop users and 15 percent of mobile users browse content with an adblocker installed, so native advertising gets through this block.
Progressive web apps combine web browsers and app performance (e.g. Google Drive), and don't require a system download, making them extremely easy for the user to access and use.
Smart Home Skills, such as Amazon Echo and Google Home, can download their own equivalents of apps called 'œskills.' Of smart home skills users, 62.7 percent noted that their priority is asking the app a question and getting an answer.
Overall, key trends in the future of content marketing for entrepreneurs show that content must be interactive, as users spend more time on interactive content and pay more attention to it than static. Entrepreneurs must keep in mind that content must also offer independent value from the brand, while offering value to customers.
You can see the full study here.
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