Change the rules of marketing with Content Intelligence
I'll begin with an important premise: foresight favors business, and that is a fact.
Let's try and think for a second about the very definition of the term: to have foresight is to use one's acuity to see the probable course of things and prepare in time.
If your companies want to be "dwarfs on the shoulders of giants", as Bernard of Chartres famously put it, to see what lies ahead from the height of giants, it is necessary to understand in advance the directions in which the strategies of Content Marketing are evolving and adapt accordingly, in order to be always be one step ahead of competitors.
ClickZ's Teresa Litsa has tried to identify five trends that will drive the strategies in the coming months, which we will present here and we will conclude by citing a methodology: Content Intelligence (that is Artificial Intelligence applied to content), which already contains all these trends and is taking the Martech landscape by storm, as evidenced by Brinker's well-known report, which cites several CI solutions.
Top of the Pops: here are the five new Content Marketing Trends
1) Employ a strategy
If we judge the value of content by its ability to "unleash" user engagement, we must arm ourselves with a ruler and collect as much data as possible about on its performance that will provide valuable insights that help us understand our audience better. Having this set of information and using a data-driven strategy allows you to segment the content according to the needs of consumers, so as to direct them to the right person, at the right time and in the right format, thereby encouraging personalization. This is why Teresa Litsa recommends investing in data analysis and content measurement systems: knowing how content is performing helps with devising the most effective editorial strategies to achieve the pre-set objectives. Yes, detecting the Content ROI becomes fundamental. Nowadays 47% of B2B marketers still do not measure it and cannot justify their work to top management.
Content proves to be an excellent tool to accompany the consumer along the entire buyer's journey during the different steps of the funnel (Awareness, Consideration, Decision). So it is important to associate the right content to each phase of the funnel, to take customers to infinity - oops, to conversion - and beyond.
At the beginning of the funnel, at the moment of discovery, we need content that generates awareness of the Brand. This is a delicate phase, in which one tries to understand what the audience wants and to "educate" them on those same topics, increasing the feeling of perceived value of the Brand which is identified as a reliable source. At the center of the funnel, during the consideration phase, we try to make the Brand appear to be the solution to the problem expressed by the customer and convey to them all the information that can differentiate the company from its competitors. Finally, at the end of the funnel, there is conversion, in which you share content that convinces the customer to complete the purchase action.
Customer journey becomes a fundamental part of the sales channel. Ideally Content Marketing should be aligned with business objectives.
3) Plan the strategy carefully
The Content Marketing Institute report indicates that 38% of B2B marketers who follow a content strategy have not documented it yet. What does this mean? That often the phase of planning and setting goals, which could make the achievement more focused and effective, is missing.
4) Work on storytelling
Teresa Litsa emphasizes how technological innovations such as bots, voice search and digital assistants require brands to rethink content, to start emphasizing the authenticity of the brand by giving ample space to original and captivating storytelling. The aim is always the same, to bring the best customer experience to the public.
5) Pay attention to the new Martech technologies
If data has become the "new oil" of company business because it provides "scientific" analyses of purchasing behavior and the interests of the audience, we also need technologies that can analyze and extrapolate this data. According to CMI's report, 38% of B2B marketers will move in this direction, increasing their budget for Content Marketing Strategy in the next 12 months. The technology makes it possible to collect data, automate marketing activities and obtain the best results in terms of efficiency.
A strategy that combines all these trends already exists and that is - as I mentioned above - Content Intelligence. With this technology, AI applied to content, which obtains data on the interests of users based on their user behavior, the Brands can:
- analyze content production and performance
- understand which topics generate the most interest for a Content Strategy driven by data and storytelling that resonates with audience expectations
- profile the interests of the individual user (including when anonymous) and then customize the CTAs that will be offered to them
- increase engagement and conversions in line with the pre-established business objectives that aim to provide an increasingly personalized customer experience: the CI helps propose the right content to the right person, at the time and in the format best suited to the step of the buyer's journey that the customer is on.