ISHERWOOD attended a breakfast meeting this week at content agency Wardour on the subject of the top trends in content marketing in 2018. Here’s some takeaways from that event:
- The revival of print media
Increasingly, companies and media groups are rediscovering the power of print media. But this is not the age of mass-circulation print products, instead we are seeing a targeted, niche and aesthetic approach to producing high quality print products. Even players from the new, sharing economy are embracing this concept – for example, AirBNB. Generally, print is part of a suite of products. Why the resurgence? People are swamped with email calling, video and social media. The print products represents a qualitative and thoughtful way to communicate – STILL!
There can be no getting away from the power of video, but there is a lot of poor quality video out there. Immediacy is key, in this age of instant gratification, people can be lost seconds after clicking onto a video. Therefore, your opening gambit has to powerful, attractive and include authentic imagery and messaging. Some companies do it particularly well, but others are more fascinated with the technology than the quality of their messaging.
- Episodic story-telling
Delivering content in instalments can be very compelling – a strong example is Coca-Cola’s latest advertisements, which have really snared a big audience. This heightens anticipation, triggers memory and drives engagement. It is not confined to video, either – magazines can capture the attention of readers by engagement, that also used online methods to capture them. This is a growing and, seemingly, successful method of offering something different.
- Use of influencers
This has to be handled carefully as there is a danger of appearing inauthentic. Using industry figures that have credibility and a genuine viewpoint can be tremendously effective, but it has to be presented in such a way that you don’t appear to be merely paying someone to endorse your own offering. The rise of the mini-influencer is also an important factor, for example, Vloggers etc.
- Artificial Intelligence
There is increasing interest in programmatic content delivery, which may take some creativity out of the process, but tools like Wordsmith and Articuloo are able to produce “unique textual content” automatically. Worrying if you’re a writer!