We have entered a world where technology is tremendously growing and the number of options marketers have for executing marketing strategies is immense. The world is constantly being reshaped by new ideas, concepts, trends, thought-patterns and often at times, we find it hard to keep up with these changes. The future of content marketing that follows the trail of new tech/trends can be quite overwhelming if marketers stuck to the old rules of marketing.[Tweet ““The best way to predict the future is to create it.” – Peter Drucker”]
There is a continuous need for learning, adapting to change, innovating and constantly figuring out what the market needs- especially, the stakeholders- for worthy outcomes.
Content marketing follows the same path; if you look back in time, you will notice that Content marketing came to be an adaptive response to the difficult marketing and advertising conditions that came before it. Traditional platforms weren’t really up to mark with its outcome which made it rational to shift to the next big platform, the Internet.
With this in mind, it is now time for marketers to look around and adopt new methodologies and ideas to drive their marketing schemes. The world is running at such a fast pace, making it necessary that corporations and companies all over bring to their stakeholders something different and exciting every time.
The standard of marketing has risen immensely and it is now the time to focus on authenticity and connection with the people rather than just brand-focused monetary driven approaches. There is clearly a shift in the way content marketing works, and this is significantly affecting the future of content marketing.
Understanding the importance of authenticity and leveraging new technology is key to developing a successful marketing campaign. It is crucial that marketers all over realize this and start researching new strategies and approaches for selling their product/service.
Before you start thinking about it, let us give you a glance at some of the most expected ‘next big thing’ in content marketing. These technologies/approaches are seen to be the harbingers of the big shift in the future of content marketing.
Strap on your seatbelt and sit tight; Get ready to go into the future!
Stop #1: Involve Data-Driven Storytelling.
The Harvard Business Review predicts that data-driven storytelling is seen to be the next big trend in content marketing. Marketers no longer just market their goods but also, put across to the world an abundance of content through digital medias such as Youtube, Podcasts, digital newsrooms, etc.
The more the marketer publishes their brand ideas, information, and stories- the more the customers get familiar with the brand and their perspectives. The main aim here is to catch the attention of the stakeholders and also keep the attention consistent.
Data-sets are exponentially growing and marketers should grab this opportunity to make use of these to analyze and uncover new angles to their stories. When stories connect to people, people connect to the company.
Before, we delve into how to get started with it, let us look at some examples of how companies are leveraging this idea today.
Kickstarter is a company that helps artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers, and others in generating the resources they need to turn their ideas into reality. It uses data points to share and inspire Kickstarter readers. It is one of the most unique company because it uses data to drive its blog posts and is quite successful at doing so.
For example, Kickstarter uses data to tell stories and inspire others to continue updating and innovating their creative pursuits. This can be seen in the incident of when $13.3 million were funded after the revamp of the post “Some Cool Stats on the Coolest Cooler” which highlighted a Kickstarter project that was falling short of cash. This, in fact, came to be one of the most-funded Kickstarter projects of all time.
Intuit has quite an interesting blog that uses data to capture the attention of the people and share intriguing information and stories. For example, it created an infographic that compared the financial habits of millennials versus Gen X to reveal surprising data points. The company uses such data-points to drive their marketing strategy for TurboTax.
Jawbone is a fitness company that uses that sells fitness trackers. They use the data collected from the user to provide a very intriguing surprise on Valentine’s Day- they assist the user on what to eat and drink on the day of love. Sharing information about how your audience compares to others is a great way to capture interest and drive engagement.
At the end of 2018, Spotify released a surprise for its users- they could see stats about all the songs they had listened to in that year. Called Spotify Wrapped, users could now relive their year in music by seeing the first song they had listened to, the top 10 songs played the most, most listened-to genre, etc. With the data derived from user usage, Spotify came up with these stats to provide a nice experience for all of their devoted listeners.
So how do you get started with this? Well, start by making sure that you use the data you get from your present users- use Internal data. With these internal data, create data points and process them to bring out interesting visuals. Visuals are always encapturing and the audience is sure to love it. With the data points derived, it is also essential to find trends in it that might be interesting and can be leveraged to tell a story.
Another point to remember is to make sure that you look for counterintuitive data points as well because the most compelling story comes out of such counterintuitive ideas and that is bound to capture the attention of many. Taking note of all these, storytelling through data is seen to boom in the future of content marketing.
Stop #2: Engaging in Interactive content.
There is now a need for content to be engaged with the audience rather than just being consumed statically. With developing technologies such as Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, digital storytelling through such means is seen to drive the future of content marketing. Customers can now experience the story virtually and that creates a strong connection with the company that can indeed accelerate the outcome of marketing.
AR/VR technology is still in it’s starting stage of development with only a few great stuff coming out of the indie community and tech-startups in California. The design rules for these technologies are still being established and there is quite some time to go before it’s a concrete wedge on the ground. Nonetheless, marketers can plan to use this medium to push their stories and make this a tech that would drive the future of content marketing.
How do you get started on this? As Shelly Midthun, Director at Oregon Story Board, tells it- “The thing to focus on is: What is my story? What do I want to tell? And then, where does my story fit into this giant ecosystem of platforms?”
So it does come back to the human element: we learn better, we identify more strongly, and we remember better through stories that resonate with us, regardless of the medium. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get more attention and amplify your story with the right medium.”
Find the right story. Find the right medium. Engage with the right people.
Stop #3: Developing Chatbots.
This is the age of messaging and fast communication. There isn’t a day that goes by without Whatsapping or sliding into DMs. In such a time, when it has been realized that personalized communication and messaging is leading the way of lifestyle, it is necessary to utilize this to bring out marketing strategies that can reach the people efficiently. One such way that leverages both technology and trend is the emergence of Chatbots.
Why should businesses focus on chatbots? Well, with so many messaging platforms and social spaces, it is only rational to take advantage of this and use it as a channel for pushing content and marketing. The kind of content you push, the messaging platforms you aim to use- all of it matters.
One unique feature about Chatbots that makes it so much more interesting for users is that it is great for sending across personalized and user-specific messages. People love customizations because they connect with it more. And as we always mention, more connection drives more sales.
So how do I get started on this? Well, creating a chatbot is pretty easy. Get yourself a tech team that develops an efficient and appropriate one for your company. The tricky part is making sure that the chatbot reaches the people.
Let’s look at some ways suggested by Tuba Tezer in her excellent article that describes how to do that:
Build a character according to User needs.
Make sure that the chatbot supports the problem that your brand aims to solve. As an example, let us look at Casper’s Insominiabot-3000. Casper is a mattress company that aims to give its users good sleep and also, help those with insomnia. Casper created a very creative and innovative chatbot that would talk to those finding it hard to sleep. It has proved to be effective and has helped a lot of people calm down and get a good night’s sleep- which is what the brand stands for.
Augment the Experience You Already Deliver
This sort of approach is perfect for brands related to entertainment. A chatbot can bring to users a unique experience of placing themselves in the fantasy world. This can be done through interactions and messaging with the characters of the game or artistic media. An example of a company that used this approach is Activision. They use chatbots for augmenting its very well-known and successful Call of Duty video game series.
Leverage Existing Content in a New Way.
Since Chatbots provide personalized messages and fast communication at any time, they’re a great way to help users discover content that might otherwise go unnoticed. It is crucial to understand that chatbots can be leveraged to show the present content in a new way- a way that connects with the users more. One such example is the Food Network’s Chatbot that provides instantaneous messages to users searching for recipes.
Impressive features include- asking for recipes shown on TV (pairing well with users’ viewing habits) or calling up ingredient-based recipes while in the kitchen hands-free (via the Alexa skill).
To improve the chatbot even further, look through the analytics of the user data received and accordingly develop your chatbot for better outreach and performance. There’s so much to be done with this technology so try it soon and start marketing your company for successful outcomes. The rise of Chatbots is sure to be noticed in the future of content marketing.
Create Your ChatBot or Use a free ChatBot from MobileMonkey.
Creating a chatbot is pretty easy. Get yourself a tech team that develops an efficient and appropriate one for your company. The tricky part is making sure that the chatbot reaches the people.
Or alternatively, you can also create ChatBot using a free chatbot platform like MobileMonkey. It’s quite easy to work with it. All you need to do is:
- Signup with facebook account
- Add questions and responses, like below, and you’re done.
MobileMonkey allows you to build conversational messenger chatbots that handles frequently asked questions. It also allows you to create chatbots that handle appointment scheduling and execute various tasks for you.
Stop #4: Using Deep Neural Networks.
Deep learning and Neural networks are being used in many fields today, from agriculture to automobiles. It is time that it seeps into the Marketing industry and makes prolific outcomes for the future of content marketing.
One such technique of Deep learning is something known as Generative Adversarial Networks or GANs. There are complex neural networks that are used to generate fake images or videos. These are also known as deep fakes. These programs take the face of a Person A and put it in place of Person B, but with such precision that you cannot find the difference.
The wearable industry, clothing industry, jewelry industry, and such similar industries can be benefitted by the application of this technology to showcase their product being worn by the specific user to him/herself. In such a way, he/she gets a feel of what is being bought and better decisions can be made through it.
This is an area of technology that hasn’t risen completely but research is being done extensively. This may come as a subset of interactive approaches and is sure to deliver a more interesting edge to the future of marketing.
So these are some of the technologies and ideas that are viewed to be the future of content marketing but if you look closer, you will see an underlying similarity in all of these ‘stops’. As Jayson Demers from Forbes puts it, “Authenticity might be driving a new content marketing revolution.”
Authenticity is one of the major drivers of the future of content marketing. It is no longer the days when people were naive and gullible. We live in a world where people strive to make informed decisions and can see right through monetary schemes.
They trust other people and content from the perspective of someone else stand out to be more successful in establishing a connection with the user. It is more effective to share personal stories and content rather than put out superficial commercials. People do not trust corporations anymore.
People trust people.
With that in mind, it is essential to realize that almost all the technology emerging is in a way trying to establish this connection. It isn’t using the traditional means of advertising and rather focuses on the approach of bringing the company closer to the hearts of the user.
So, I think it is only reasonable to conclude that authentic and personalized marketing is the next big thing in the future of content marketing.
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