From Media Post
- by Jack Loechner, January 1, 2015, 6:15 AM
According to KJ Wakefield & L Mangiaforte in a NewsCred blog, with companies globally spending an estimated $135 billion on content marketing in 2014, staying ahead of the curve is essential financially and strategically. To help visualize what content will look and act like in the near future, the authors collected the voices of marketing thought-leaders to tell us what they see for 2015.
There were a lot of digital marketing changes in 2014, as marketers focused on providing valuable content to their consumers, and making it accessible on every platform, including mobile, says the report. Digital marketing predictions for 2015 by “those in the know,” are severely summarized here.
- Companies will make content a key component of culture. Rebecca Lieb of the Altimeter Group calls this “developing an enterprise-wide culture of content.” Content creation shouldn’t just be a task for the marketing team, but external and internal communications to get input from all teams. User-generated content won’t only be relegated to the realm of social media.
- “Soon, many of the top media sites in the world will be brand-owned,” says Doug Kessler of B2B agency Velocity. As the percentage of media sites owned by brands increases, so too will marketing budgets for content, leading to continuously higher quality
- “… indy media that doesn’t take native ads will rise again.” Kessler predicts. Content sites that don’t accept native will eventually strike out, likely gaining enormous followings and alternative ad revenue for themselves in the process
- Storytelling will topple other marketing silos, emerging as the ultimate audience-reaching tactic. NewsCred’s Head of Strategy Michael Brenner says, “… content, data and technology will emerge as the only way for brands to reach consumers through storytelling… “
- Brands will need to tap into their human nature and tell funny, engaging, and emotional stories if they want to survive, notes Brenner. That’s good news for consumers and content marketers alike, there are fewer things worse than lifeless content.
- Daniel Burstein, director of editorial content at MECLABS, says, “… in the same way that marketing automation, email marketing, analytics, software, etc. are all converging into one end-to-end marketing platform (usually in the cloud), companies and content creators will converge as well. More brands will become publishers, more publishers will become marketing agencies, and more marketing agencies will become brands….”
- According to Neil Patel, co-founder of KISSmetrics, community is going to be a big focus of marketing in 2015. “…companies are going to realize there is much more value in a community… everyone knows there’s Instagram, Facebook, etc… but not every company is building its own… ”
- We’ll see clearer definitions and get a better understanding of social native ads, native display, and custom sponsorships. Tom Channick, head of communications at Sharethrough, says. As open web publishers continue to optimize their mobile websites and apps, these ads will become the primary monetization strategy by year’s end…”
- Brands will stop creating stale blog posts and produce richer content experiences instead. According to Hanna Andrzejewska, marketing manager at GetResponse future content will: “…evoke emotions, express deeper empathy for each customer persona, and tell great stories with less emphasis on aggressive selling…”
- Mobile-first thinking becomes a priority. According to Andrzejewska, mobile will take the lead. “Considering the fact that over 60% of emails are opened on mobile devices first and conversion rates are still in the single digit percentage ranges, there’s still massive potential for marketers to gain a deeper understanding of the mobile user’s behavior…”
- In 2015, companies must fully integrate digital into their entire operation. Murray Newlands, founder of Influence People, says that to keep up: “Having a great digital strategy is no longer something that can happen in isolation. The whole company has to undergo a digital transformation…”
- Brands that create content for mobile will be a hit among consumers. According to Steve Farnsworth, chief marketing officer at The Steveology Group, “… 2015 is when marketers start to grasp Flex-Media and its necessity to take advantage of ‘content in your pocket.’ That is, content that goes everywhere the user goes… “
- “… Before creating an editorial calendar for your content marketing, analyze who is involved in the buying process of your product, says Farnsworth. What titles, pressures, and job responsibilities do the users, bosses, and influencers that buy your product have? Content marketers are discovering that digital assets designed specifically for those topics are rocket fuel for driving inbound sales leads… ”
- Farnsworth also says that “… repurposing existing marketing and corporate communications is usually created by marketers from their point of view, and focuses on what they sell, not on what they know. This is content marketing poison. While repurposing content sounds good, more often it is like using rotted wood to build a boat…”
- Entrepreneur and investor John Rampton “… SEO as a title is dying and will be dead in 2015. It will evolve into something bigger and much more important that encompasses everything marketing and analytics… ”
- Marketing Speaker and Coach Jay Baer says: “… 2015 will bring decentralized content creation programs with participants across the company (not just marketing), as well as content initiatives that rely on user-generated content in expanded and highly strategic ways. The best source of content in most companies may be your employees and customers… ”
- Melissa Breker, co-founder of Content Strategy Inc., says, “… we will see content as an experience. We need to think past silo-based content and use customer journeys to determine how content can create different experiences… across all content touch points… “