Truths and Trends for 2017: Content

Scott Snowden
Scott Snowden
Business & Technology Strategy
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This is the third of a four part series of posts to start off 2017. In part 1 we set things up by highlighting some truths that should not be forgotten. In part 2 we look at digital trends, while part 3 discusses marketing trends and then we wrap up with the fourth part discussing design trends.

This is not a trends article. No, this is a just a tribute.

Rather than provide a trends article as we launch into 2017, I thought it might make more sense to provide marketing suggestions you should be thinking about implementing this year. Activities to think about, questions to ask, ways to push your brand. Here are some suggestions to motivate you as we enter 2017! 

Video

Video dominated the marketing direction for many brands in 2016. Facebook alone had 4 billion daily video streams in 2016 and those numbers will only grow for the channel and other video-based platforms like Snap, Periscope and Instagram in 2017. Most platforms now have a live stream option to instantly serve up user activity. But to suggest that there is a shift towards live streaming in place of edited video seems a little early. I believe that brands will begin to consider how to integrate all of their video efforts to provide a total product vision. Social media marketers will begin to build their content plans around how one video content style can support the other. For example, edited videos can tell brand or product stories supported by live videos demonstrating your product in action, or in use by consumers. These live videos could then be supported by detailed how-to videos that explain the former in a more comprehensive manner. I have no doubt that it will become increasingly important to add the live video component to your content plan, but as a support to existing video content formats rather than a replacement. "Authentic" is going to be the term you will hear about more and more, as crafted, refined and cleaned up will give way to real, raw, and immediate in both live and edited formats.

Websites and Email

Personal, authentic and immediate being the theme, your websites and email need to catch up! The great news is they can. We have clients that send personalized emails with very specific content related to a potential consumer’s past site behaviour or existing analytic patterns. These tailored emails drive back to a focused, specialized version of their website that tailors the language, content, call to action and user experience in an effort to increase conversion rates. Not every web user is the same and companies are starting to realize that. It will take time to dig into those behaviour flows, solicit feedback from customers, A/B test and analyze buying behaviour suspicions… but all that will have unbeatable value when you have happy site users and customers resulting in significantly higher conversion rates. Strong website platforms and established email clients have the tech strength to execute these types of integrated campaigns, simply in a cost-effective way!

Ad Dollars, Beyond Google

I have preached the value of social advertising a lot in the last several months and I hope you have been listening. We have started doing more and more personalized Facebook ads to increasingly targeted audiences and more testing with tailored copy, images, interests and timing - with excellent results. There are now lots of great social platform options that help increase your integrated approach. Instagram provides a seamless process for consumers to see an ad and simply click shop now, plus they have Shoppable Instagram which provides "click to buy" options integrated within the app. If your demographic matches theirs, Snap is now providing more opportunities to serve your audience video ads and sponsored filters. Even Twitter has been upping their ad game with stickers and video ads. Just remember you want to keep the tone of authentic and real. On a platform like Instagram, if you are not creating similar content to your usual posts, an ad or sponsored content or will stick out like a sore thumb and be passed over. Start testing and see what works, or informs you about a new demographic or platform.

One final thing to note; we have been using a new Google ad format call Universal App to promote app downloads and the results have surpassed expectations. I can tell you it does require faith that Google knows that they are doing by serving your ads to the right users. But much like the hooks, you just have to let the ads do the work.

As always, we are happy help with these activities or provide some guidance, just fire me an email. And if you haven't already, check out part one and part two of our 2017 Truths and Trends series!

Author: Shane Davis 
Marketing 

 


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