USA Today and other newspapers are planning to add more personality to their papers in the coming days. They are urging reporters to not just write news in a straightforward manner, but to offer different points of view in an interesting way.
In this scenario where all content has to be appealing enough to share in an ecosystem where social media takes it upon itself to pick the winners and losers; what do marketers do to sustain?
You must have heard the phrase, “content marketing is dead” a zillion times. Yes, for those who believe so, it has been dead for a long time. They haven’t noticed the new reality: that markets aren’t undergoing a change – they have already changed.
Honestly, nobody cares about the substandard content that people were churning out.
There is a huge shift in paradigm, where consumers lapping up everything produced by marketers, has given way to customized content creation and two-way interactions between customers and marketers.
“The value we create is directly related to how much valuable information we can produce, how much trust we can earn and how often we innovate.”
These words by Seth Godin in his latest book, “The Icarus Dection” convey this shift perfectly. He calls this the connection economy.
Article marketing works. It’s important to both Internet and network marketers. If you tell a story that influences people, that changes their action.
This is not restricted to online businesses; this is a phenomenon taking place throughout the world. It’s all about consumer opinions now. Even Gap had to withdraw its new redesigned logo because of consumer dislike.
Gap had to revert to the old logo (on the left) when people hated and complained about the new blue one (right). All this within one week of releasing the new logo!
Consumers are not taking what they don’t like anymore. Gone are the days when people kept quiet if they didn’t like it. Now they not only voice their opinion but will make sure others hate it too. This reveals the power of the social networking sites. If 10 people like something, 1000 follow. Their dislike is as intense too.
Concentrate your content marketing strategies on the following:
Create content that people will read, watch, click on – and share. This is certainly not easy, not for people who are so used to creating mediocre content.
On the other hand, marketers who understand people’s psyche are concentrating on content that people enjoy. The most viral content on the Internet today is media content; like videos and images. It’s this content that people share with their friends and if it’s really good, it spreads like wildfire.
One of the best viral marketing examples is the “Will it Blend” series by Blendtec. It has been viewed 16,025,552 times as of today. The company’s blender sales are said to have increased by more than 700%.
And who was the marketing genius behind this: Everything was done by the viewers through sharing.
So just because you need some content to go viral, you create a video of two singing parrots. How’s that going to help cause the action you want? As a marketer, you have to think in terms of creating content that fulfils your goals of people taking the action you seek.
Talking of relevance, there can be nothing better than the amazing Evian baby-roller ad. This ad is for Evian mineral water and what it does to your body. It’s completely unique and not surprisingly, it went viral immediately attracting millions of views. It makes you smile and tingle, and does its job for the brand.
Relevance doesn’t have to be a man or woman drinking mineral water. Think out of the box and you can’t go wrong.
People are inundated with advertisements. That’s what they’ve been subjected in the past and they’re fed up with all the ploys. Now they’re attracted to marketers who think from their perspective.
Is that person bothered about finding a solution to our problem? Is what he’s communicating in anyway helpful to us?
When people read or watch a piece of content, they’re looking for information and fun. Weave small stories around the content you’re creating.
Look at the above email from a successful marketer. This email has a link at the bottom to a training program. This is a great way to rope people in emotionally. I believe, marketing with a genuine intention to help the audience makes a mark.
A variety of content creation strategies are in vogue in 2013, as they drive interaction and conversations in real-time: social media, forums, comments etc. Forums and comments are nothing new but they are gaining their popularity again due to the engagement they create.
Through such interactions, you gain an insight into the questions people need answered. Create beautiful stories answering them. More and more content marketers are looking at customers to give them ideas on content creation. Social media interactions are expected to grow tremendously like never before. So increase your social media presence and engagement.
Golden rule: Be where people are.
While the above mentioned content strategies work today and are expected to work tomorrow, the most important thing to understand is that a content marketer has to use different tactics to reach a wider audience. Audience today gets bored easily and has selective amnesia.
According to reports, the tactics that have seen the largest increases are: video, research reports, case studies, infographics, conferences online and mobile content. Mobile is huge now and everyone should look at making their websites mobile friendly to cater to this growing segment of people.
If there’s an area of marketing where you should be increasing your budget, its content marketing. Spend more on creating different types of content and you’ll see a better ROI than you would, investing that money elsewhere.
Say no to content that nobody wants. You want to be loved and cared for. Change your attitude from hardcore to sensitive. Don’t create content just for the sake of creating it or for links. Let your content serve more than one purpose; engagement with the audience, authority in your niche, traffic generation and traffic. Don’t buy into the hype that the more content you create, the more traffic you will generate and the more money you will make. If you continually pump out useless content that serves no purpose and gives little value then people will not only ignore your content but get irritated with seeing it very fast. When creating, always ensure that what you create gives excellent value.
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