Since Google released the Panda algorithm update in 2011, it has been very stringent about the quality of online content. Websites that use thin content or plagiarized content were penalized. The only way through which these sites could recover was by reworking on the existing content to improve the quality. This update revamped the way content is written and presented online and also paved ways for effective content marketing practices. As Google started valuing user experience over everything else, brands, too, started reworking on their online marketing strategies and shifted their focus from only selling to building relationships.
Instead of straightaway telling people to buy your product or service, what about adopting a systematic approach towards marketing? Content marketing does precisely that. With content marketing, you not only earn the trust of your target audience and build brand awareness before making sales, but you also improve your site traffic and generate leads for your business through it.
You can use every content source at your disposal like blogs, vlogs, podcasts, ebooks, and infographics to offer useful information to your target audience. Besides talking about your products and services, you can also share your opinions and suggestions about your niche industry through these content sources. When it comes to content creation in 2020, your focus should be more on the quality than the quantity. Once you start posting informative content and promote them online, people will start noticing you and visit your website to learn more about your business. This process of promoting content to attract leads is known as content marketing.
Content marketing has seen many changes over the years. It has now become a mainstream marketing technique for most online businesses. If you are just starting with your online business or want to increase your sales this year, you need to plan out a solid content marketing strategy for your business. Here’s our fool-proof guide to content marketing techniques that will work like magic in 2020.
Video Content Will Keep Rising
Video marketing is definitely on the cards for most businesses this year. According to Hubspot, 58% of users prefer to watch video content over everything else. You can already assume the extreme popularity of video content with the number of video-based apps being introduced every month. Social networking sites like Facebook and Instagram have also launched their live video feature that allows anyone to live stream videos from any part of the world.
With the rising popularity of video content, brands should definitely start focusing on creating quality videos for your brand. Youtube is the primary and most popular source when it comes to watching video content. Good video content can instantly engage users and are easily shareable across various social media platforms. If you are creating videos for your brand, remember to add a crisp intro, followed by the content. You can also suggest videos on related topics and link them in the description box to keep the user engaged to your channel.
To increase the visibility of your videos in Youtube search, you can optimize the tags and video description with trending keywords related to your topic. You can choose to stay behind the camera and give voice over for your video content, but standing in front of the camera and talking about your product or services will build trust and credibility among people and help establish a brand voice. Besides creating videos, it is equally vital for you to reply to all the comments that you receive on them and share the videos on your brand’s social channels.
Email Promotion Will Continue Its Charm
Email marketing has been there for a while, and it is still useful in bringing traffic and leads to a website. According to the Content Marketing Institute, email marketing is still believed to be the most effective content distribution channel by more than 75% of people. You can send out weekly or monthly newsletters to your mailing list containing new content.
If you want to increase your subscriber base or retain the existing ones, you should send them exclusive content from time to time, i.e., content that is not published anywhere on your site. This is an effective way to make your followers feel valued. Since most marketing emails end up in spam folders, try to add a touch of personalization to your email newsletters like addressing your subscribers by their names.
Ensure to follow a mobile-friendly format for your email newsletters since most people browse their emails on their phones these days. Design your email newsletter to make it look professional. Add an attractive headline and subject lines. Use subheadlines, images, and videos wherever necessary.
Create Source Content
Adding to the list of quality content is “Source Content.” It is a repository of all the content sources that are used to create a piece of content. This type of content compiles interesting pieces of data and present them as a single post. You can choose any trending topic in your niche and try to source comments and research stats from industry experts.
Be careful to find the authentic source for every fact and link them correctly. You also need to examine the authenticity of such data before including them in your content. A good idea to check the validity of such data is by assigning a data scientist. Source content can improve user engagement and increase social shares if you add your own inputs to the collected data like adding a key takeaway section and creating charts and graphs based on the collected data. When you visualize the written data into graphs and charts, it gets much more comfortable for users to understand and compare the numbers with each-other. If you want to create a buzz with your source content, you can choose to publish it as a press release and share it with relevant media sources to promote it.
Increase Engagement on Linkedin
Linkedin is a networking site for professionals where they can post vacancies and job requirements and share industry news. Unlike Facebook, where the organic reach of posts is limited, Linkedin offers better opportunities for brands to increase their organic reach. However, like every other social networking site, your content needs to be impactful and informative in order to get viral on Linkedin. The posts that you publish on Linkedin are also different from what you post on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
In Linkedin, you can repost your blog content as an article instead of sharing the link to the blog. If you are representing your brand on Linkedin, ensure to update the profile accordingly. Write a clear “About Me” section highlighting your position and the brand values. Update the skills sections with a relevant list of skills that you possess. Ask the clients you’ve worked with to write testimonials for you and frequently share company news and updates on your Linkedin profile.
Find The Right Topics to Work On
You must have heard a lot of digital marketers focusing on the importance of writing content on trending topics. It is definitely a good practice and can help you rank if you can churn out a good content piece. However, it is very tough to retain a high rank in the SERP for trending topics since many other people are also working on similar topics and trying to create better content than yours. So how do you ensure that your content is trending online?
Well, instead of just focusing on trending topics, also look for emerging topics on the internet. These are the topics that haven’t got much momentum yet but have high chances to trend. Topics such as cancer medicine or 3D printing are some topics that are going to emerge as mainstream topics in the future. You can look for such topic ideas by tracking Google Trends. It is an effective way to discover whether a keyword is growing or losing search traffic.
If you find an emerging topic or a trending topic that is quite new to the industry, then you can choose to create a guide on it. This will help users to understand the topic in detail, and in return, you can get good traffic to your site.
Repurpose Old Content
Repurposing old content is yet another way to market your old content without the need to put the effort from scratch. The standard for writing quality content has gone up over the years, and people are no longer interested in reading topics in bits and pieces but prefer elaborate content.
So if you have old posts that are not up to the current content standard, you can rework on them and try to add additional information to it. Other ways to repurpose old content is by optimizing the content with new keywords, adding images, videos, and infographics to the existing content to make it more meaningful. Once you rework on old content, you can republish them on your blog and share it across social media to gain traffic.
Optimize Content For Emerging Search Trends
The current search trend scenario is seeing a massive change from the past. Search is no longer limited to written queries but is now carried out through voice and images as well. In this scenario, your web content needs to be optimized for the upcoming search trends that give more impetus to voice than text.
This means you need to understand how voice search differs from text searches. While text search queries tend to be 3-4 words on an average, voice search queries often run up to 20 words. These queries are often question-based, unlike written queries, which are usually written in phrases.
To optimize content for voice search, you need to write posts in the form of questions and answers. Adding FAQ sections, breaking up long paragraphs into subheadings and bullet points are some ways in which voice search queries can pick up parts of your content to show in the featured snippets.
It is also true that most voice search queries are carried out on mobile devices, so to rank your site in the search engines, you need to optimize your website for mobile devices. Optimizing for site speed, taking care of site security by adding SSL certification, providing clean navigation, and using structured data are some effective ways to offer a better user experience.
Work on Brand Partnerships & Collaborations
One of the leading trends in online marketing is two brands coming together to mutually promote their products and services or brands collaborating with influencers for promotion. Brand collaboration can take place between two brands with a similar target audience or between different brands. Either way, the partnership should aim to increase brand exposure and drive revenue. For example, designer Louis Vuitton collaborated with BMW to create an exclusive four-piece set of suitcases that fits in the car’s rear parcel shelf. Besides, the suitcases were designed in sync with the image of the luxury car: sleek and sophisticated.
For influencer marketing in 2020, brands will be collaborating more with micro-influencers from specific niche so that users can relate to the products or services being endorsed. With people getting smarter about choosing products and services online, celebrity influencer marketing is becoming less relevant to the audience.
When you plan to endorse a new product online, people want to hear honest opinions coming from people they can relate to. So, if you’re going to recommend a shampoo in 2020, instead of spending a fortune on celebrities for endorsement, collaborating with local hairdressers and hair stylists with a good follower base will give you better outcomes.
Conversational content marketing strategy is yet another hit strategy of 2020. 80% of businesses are expected to have chatbot automation by 2020, says a recent survey by Business Insider. Companies are introducing AI-powered chatbots and interactive platforms on their websites to keep users engaged and help them 24×7 with their queries.
While most e-commerce companies have adopted chatbot conversations and virtual assistants to help users with a smooth checkout and after-sales process, other websites, too, are rapidly introducing AI-driven technologies to improve user experience by several folds. Chatbots, when used in its full potential, can simplify business operations and offer active customer support.
Personalized Content Delivery
With the world going gaga over streaming services by Netflix and Amazon Prime that allows you to watch your favorite movies and TV shows on your computer and mobile devices, television broadcasting is almost losing its popularity with the millennials. The popularity of these streaming channels is due to its smart AI-powered customized content delivery system that continually suggests movies and television shows based on your viewership pattern.
Businesses, too, should embrace such a customized content delivery system that’ll allow them to show customized products and services to the users. This will make it easier for users to make a purchase decision and select their favorite products based on their previous buying patterns. Besides, this technology can be used to send personalized newsletters to users and show them relevant content on the site.
Marketing in 2020 is mainly about bringing authenticity, transparency, and value to your content strategy. As a business owner, you should offer refined user experience and help people make conscious decisions about their purchases. Focus on building good customer relationships from the beginning of the year to get benefits in the long run.