2020 was an uphill climb for many businesses in terms of marketing. 2021, however, can become the year when the climb gets easier.
With the right kind of focus and planning, you can make 2021 a big year for your business. The best way you can do this is by making content marketing a priority in your 2021 marketing plan.
Here we’ll take a look at the value of utilizing content marketing, different associated trends that you could also use, and general tips for building your 2021 plan.
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Why Content Marketing?
Typically, traditional formats of advertising tend to focus on one part of the marketing funnel. Content marketing, however, has the potential to carry you through the whole marketing funnel and along each step of the buyer journey — up until the very end where your audience becomes your consumer.
One useful definition of content marketing is as follows:
Content marketing can be defined as “the strategic creation, production, and distribution of content that is relative, relevant, and valuable, that effectively serves a purpose to a clearly defined targeted audience.”
With the year that 2020 has been, the consumption of digital content has more than doubled when compared to previous years. People are spending more time scrolling now; making it the best time to catch their attention.
As a result, the year also saw a rise in demand for well-written content that was backed by research, leaving the reader with beneficial information. So, if you still haven’t gotten to making a content marketing plan for your business yet, move it up to your top priority.
This year has also seen a rise of new and exciting content marketing trends that make it easier for businesses to cater their products to their proper audience.
Trends To Include In Your 2021 Content Marketing Plan
Although traditional formats of advertising declined this year, influencer marketing thrived as a response. Influencers as content creators themselves are credible figures on the internet. People follow them and aspire to be like them. Therefore, getting your brand to fit into their content seamlessly can do wonders for your brand awareness and consideration.
User-generated content (UGC)
The next year is set to see even more user-generated content, which is essentially content created by unpaid users. If it isn’t already, UGC should be a part of your marketing plan. After all, any solid content marketing strategy avoids one-way street conversations.
Opening up the conversation to your audience encourages engagement with your brand and also builds brand loyalty. Your brand becomes more approachable, more reliable, and liable for its actions. All these assets can serve your business for many years. UGC has many benefits — not only does it give businesses a break from creating their content, but it also allows users to get a more authentic perspective about your brand.
It is also important to keep track of the new formats of UGC. This includes formats like interactive stories to live sessions and social media takeovers. Stay updated with these formats and use them regularly on relevant digital platforms.
By now, we have all heard at least one podcast, if not more. The simplicity of this format has been a hit within the content marketing world, with podcasts here to stay in 2021.
The audience for podcasts is niche, focused, and ready to engage. While podcasts may not be the best strategy to reach out to the masses, they can do wonders if you narrow down your target audience, resulting in the creation of content that they regularly consume.
In this way, a podcast that offers meaningful conversations will give your brand long-term trust and credibility.
Voice search optimization
Siri, Alexa, and other voice-based “assistants” are all part of the wave of voice search optimization. Voice search is convenient, fuss-free, and can be done while eating a sandwich — what more could a consumer want?
These traits belong to the future, and voice search optimization has the potential to significantly enhance your brand visibility. With this in mind, be sure to work on the content that has been optimized for voice search.
Your brand cannot afford to be absent on video platforms. Whether it be Tiktok, Youtube, or Instagram Reels, videos are fun to watch and easy to spread on the internet.
If one of your top goals for content marketing is to increase your reach, make sure videos are what you spend most of your time and money on.
While we recommend implementing the above content marketing trends in your 2021 strategy, you can maximize the benefits of these inclusions by following a couple of general tips.
For one, it is important to map out customers’ journeys. Through the mapping process, decide on where you want to lead your consumer. For example, if you want more people to visit your website, your communication on every other platform should direct people to the website. This way, your content marketing can give you better results with smaller efforts.
Secondly, set out metrics to determine the success of your content marketing efforts, and be sure to constantly monitor results. Observe results and engagement and improve your strategy based on data-driven insights from your result.
In recent times, brands have successfully established strong identities with well-developed content marketing. Rolex, Shutterstock, and Hubspot are some examples of businesses that have built loyalty and trust to a point of acquiring new customers by their content marketing strategy. However, this loyalty wasn’t acquired overnight with the implementation of new trends alone. Content marketing is ever-evolving and must be treated as such.
Content marketing is not a short-term or one-time marketing idea. It requires pre-planning, lots of research, and real-time analysis. However, if you’re willing to take this route of labor then the results can be better than you imagined.
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