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Top 21 Content Marketing Trends For 2016 & 2017

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Talking about content marketing in 2016 and 2017, there is one thing for sure – content marketing is all the more important this time. This is an important point since you might not see any website with poor content ranking very high in the Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs). Oh, but that doesn’t mean it cannot happen, especially by webmasters more concerned with overnight success instead of long-term victories and strategies.

In the rest of 2016 and the upcoming year of 2017, no amount of SEO magic spells will be enough to cover those brands that don’t consider content as important. Bu..buu…but why?

Well, this is for sure that content will take a much more versatile and diverse role this year and in 2017. Therefore, it will not only be responsible for visibility, it will also play an important role in the engagement and also, turning the customers into advocates for the brands and businesses.

In this blog, we will be discussing some of the trends that are expected to dominate the world of content marketing in 2016 and 2017.

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Content Marketing Trends in 2016 & 2017

1. Focus on meaningful content

Serving valuable and meaningful content is and will continue to be an important trend. This is one of the strongest building blocks of content marketing. If you take away this block, your marketing strategy will fall. Therefore, serious marketers will stay well away from the poor-quality content written only to fill up the space.content-strategy

How to make good content?

Choose a topic that solves genuine queries of your users, do a thorough research, cover all the possible areas your users are seeking answers to, and create shareable as well as engaging content.

2. Personalize the content you create

The rest of 2016 and the next year will be more about personalized content, so make sure you know everything that you probably should know about your customers and audience.personalization

Do your research; invest in data to know where your users are coming from, their devices and their preferences. The motive behind this will be you can tailor content specific to the needs of your users. By knowing what your users are interested in helps you get personal and closer to them. This will make them think of you as a companion and a friend rather than a marketer.

3. Make video-based content

Seeing the popularity of video content in 2016, it is easy to guess that video-based content will be much more popular in the rest of 2016 and the upcoming year, 2017.

Even though written content will be hard to surpass in terms of scalability and availability, a video is a platform to be considered as people are responding to it in a much better way.

If you wish to be successful, you need to capture and retain the attention of your users. With videos, you can do that better, and it is also more likely to get shared and go viral.

4. Why not try GIFs?

Pushing the envelope has always been the main thing in the marketing success. GIFs along with other emerging formats provide you with an opportunity to do just that. They appeal younger audience more than traditional formats and companies targeting millennials will profit from making bold moves in untouched waters.

5. Customize content to specific devices

Making your web page responsive is something that cannot be overlooked so we can call it a caveat of design, content marketing, and the web. This will make it easy to create content specific to handheld devices. A good rule of thumb to remember is to make content sizes digestible, adapting content into a format that can be easily consumed on the go, such as lists, pictures, and GIFs, and limiting the number of words.personalization2

6. E-commerce content

Bigger than what they are right now, e-commerce sites are expected to go big in 2017. This will require specifically created content that goes beyond the description of the product if they wish to succeed. The webmasters of e-commerce site will have to find ways on how to engage customers along with grabbing their attention. It is therefore, essential to focus on ‘how-to’ and other, avoiding those dreary and boring specification lists, showcasing usefulness of products, and meaningful content.

7. Content that is automatically generated

There have been huge leaps in the algorithms in the recent years and the time is approaching when they will be able to create content without human interference or input. 2017 could be the year when a machine finally generates an engaging piece of content (as many say). However, more than this, it is expected that algorithms will become more skilled in concise reports, writing short reports like sports news or weather reports.

8. Focus on long-form content

Up until now, creating short but well-explored and meaningful content that addresses an immediate need worked well and will continue to work good in the future. However, now is the era of long-form content, and this form will have to be incorporated into the content marketing mix.

Therefore, creating long content pieces that are relevant for long-term will be more important because of the emerging and new technologies and tactics coming from Google.

9. Google content creation & knowledge graph

Google knowledge graph is changing the rules content as well as content creators will need to adapt. This is the main reason that long-form content will be crucial. Well researched and long-form content will put you in the run for the top position in the Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs).

10. Invention of aggregated content

The increasing number of sites will make the move toward user-generated content, aggregating in the form of articles and news. Take the example of Twitter that is already following this. They are taking snippets of photos and text from various users so as to give a more diverse view of any topic. This trend of content marketing where content is created by users for users will be dominating the year of 2017.

11. SEO equivalent to content

With Google updates, SEO techniques that once helped sites to rank better will become old. No PB, grey area methods, and the amount of linking will be able to make up for non-engaging content. The amount of time spent on a page will become the deciding factor of how well a page does.Top-26-Reasons-Your-Content-Marketing-is-Hurting-Your-SEO-Fortune-100-Keywords

You just have to make sure that the content is unique, valuable, and informative as this is the only way to rank well and to engage and connect with the audience.

12. Skyscraper content will be important

The importance of skyscraper method is well-known by content creators. Expanding and improving the existing content will be focused on more instead of creating content from the scratch. Consider the pulse and the comments of the community that read those articles in order to make your content and marketing strategy. Each rendition will become more valuable, concise, and succinct, which is the aim of informative, well-written content.

13. Issue of content saturation

It is content… content everywhere. An average American spends almost four hours in a day on different types of content. It is natural to get fed up with it. How can you overcome it? The best one can do is to create diverse content, spread out across different formats.

Note: Personalized/customized content targeting audience will respond better.

14. New options for publishing

It was noticed by Facebook that articles shared over its platform tend to do better in terms of hits and views as compared to the sites where they were originally published. In order to solve this discrepancy, Facebook introduced ‘Instant Articles’. This is a tool that allows publishers to publish their articles immediately on FB. Google is also working on the similar lines so we can expect to see a variety of publishing options during 2016.

15. Measuring ROI on content

Every business in the marketplace is investing in content marketing without knowing if their efforts are paying off well. This problem is expected to be resolved in the upcoming year. There could be more stringent guidelines and metrics being devised by the department of budget and finance in order to justify the costs associated with content marketing.

16. Snapchat

Well, we all know the craze of Snapchat. Since it has surpassed Facebook in terms of video views and posts, it is probably going to rule in the year 2016 and 2017. Even more!SnapchatDiscoverScreenshot_20Feb15_1000

It is the time that we start noticing this change and take content marketing to a whole new level.

17. Facebook

This social media platform has already become a social house for various showcases; we don’t really have much to show here. However, there is a better way especially when it comes to promoting the content assets on this huge platform.

There are various benefits of leveraging Facebook in order to drive your content for lead generation. You need to make your content marketing strategy in a way that converts Facebook as a platform for lead generation.

18. Workflow and teamwork

Up until now, things were not very tough. However, with increasing competition, it is important to focus on the workflow and hiring people to make some real content experiences.

19. Mobile

Pokemon Go is an example of how viral things can go on mobile. Undoubtedly, you have heard thousands of times that ‘bla bla’ is going to be the year of mobile. But with the growing number of people owning smartphones, this year and 2017 is probably going to be one. If your content is not digestible on mobile devices, then you are going to face problems. (in survival, to be honest)

20. Data-based decision making for content marketing

The content marketing and posts must be data-backed. Try to include data, case studies, and stats in all your posts. This will help in earning trust and this strategy actually works.content-marketing-5years

Seeing the trends, data-backed posts would become a norm. There will be an availability of more tools to the average blogger which will allow easy data mining. Therefore, great content marketers won’t have any excuse to not to support their statements with data.

Even right now, original research posts rule the internet. For instance, look at the results for “content marketing statistics.”

One of the major challenges faced by marketers is the huge available volumes of data which is their inability to decipher actionable insights.

Brands need to dig for their own ‘small data’ in order to find meaningful details that engage the audience. After that, they need to develop a plan in order to achieve their business aims. Also, analytics skills are also going to become a core competence in the marketing possibly in the next 5 years.

21. Paid distribution will impact content

Smart marketers know that content marketing costs, especially at the beginning of launching a campaign, which can be immense. If you want to see results, it will take at least 6 months. Therefore, many businesses abandon their content campaigns early due to late results and high initial costs.

Only time tells how effective content marketing is.

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The delay in time is due to content marketers’ over-reliance on free traffic from search engines. Although this traffic is stable but it builds slowly. Also, social media platform for marketing the content has become so common that at 87%, it is the most common content marketing delivery mechanism. They have crowded most of the social media platforms and therefore, gaining the attention of a consumer is getting difficult.

For instance, 50 million small business pages fight for the attention of a user on Facebook. This is the reason, many businesses fail to receive quality leads from Facebook.

For small businesses, expenses on promoting their high-quality content might sound useless. But, with paid advertising, they can open up great avenues for themselves and expose the content to a larger-targeted audience. For this reason, Instagram and Facebook are great platforms for the paid marketing efforts.paid-contentmarketing

In simple words, paid marketing works, if you leverage it properly.

According to Contently, “the paid social spend still lags behind customer attention by 50% (or $5 billion).”

Conclusion

As discussed in this blog, a lot of expectations are there in 2016 and the upcoming 2017.

Content marketing is coming in with full force, and will become one of the best tools businesses will have at their disposal when it comes to strengthening their brands and engaging audiences.

There will be interactive formats, and things are shifting to content-driven marketing. This is why content will be responsible for the success of the business in the long run. However, there will be a need to justify expenses associated with it in terms of Return on Investment (ROI).

Is there any other trend we have missed? We will be glad to hear from you!

Image Credits: Neil Patel Blog, pinimg.com, squarespace.com, onlinemarketingcoach.com

Sakshi is a content marketer during the day and a reader by night. She writes content sprinkled with a twisted imagination. She has done her graduation in psychology from Delhi University and has an insane love for history.
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  • There are 2 comments


    • 1 year ago

      Kristian Jønsson   /   Reply

      Great list, looking forward to see if your predictions is right. I think you’ve missed one thing; evergreen content. This might be the only way to differentiate from your competitors in the future when there is so much content out there.

      By the way, I have send you an email, hopefully you’ll reply 🙂

      • 1 year ago

        Sakshi Behl   /   Reply

        Thanks, Kristian for your appreciation and you are right, evergreen content is something you can ride on and attract users!

        We have replied to you, hope to hear from you soon! 🙂

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