Believe it or not, we’re in the homestretch of 2014 and the new year is just around the corner.
2014 proved to be a productive year for content marketing. According to a recent Forbes article about the rising popularity of the field, “Rather than using outdated, traditional methods of outbound marketing, businesses are finding that content marketing attracts customers and builds real trust between brands and consumers.”
That’s certainly what we preach here at Scribewise and we’re happy to see that more and more companies are getting on board and taking content marketing seriously as a means to impact the bottom line.
As we look toward the new year, here are four predictions for content marketing in 2015:
1. Video will emerge as a powerful (and more mainstream) medium for content marketing efforts. There’s no denying that video is a popular way to reach an audience. However, many marketers still immediately associate “content marketing” with the written word. In 2015, I see more content marketers using video as a powerful tool to reach busy consumers on the go. Social media sites like Instagram and Vine, plus the amazing video capabilities of new phones like the iPhone 6 make it even easier for content marketers to produce quality, useful videos on a tight budget. The videos won’t necessarily be long- some may even be just six seconds (in the case of Vine), but the visual medium is certainly one that can make a lasting impact on a potential customer or client.
2. Companies will get smarter about curated content. For years, brands have slowly been losing control of their message thanks to social media and review websites. Instead of seeing this as a downfall, why not take advantage and recognize that your brand’s biggest fans are also among your biggest assets? Take a look on social media- I bet there are people out there talking about your brand, sharing photos/videos and even advocating for your company on their own blogs, websites or reviews. In 2015, even more brands will join the conversation…and take it to the next level by working closely with these ambassadors to help produce authentic and valuable content, activating that all important third-party endorsement.
3. The stigma around sponsored content will diminish. As a PR pro who hates the idea of “pay to play,” it pains me to say this, but in 2015, I believe the stigma around paid or sponsored content will slightly diminish. It’s already becoming extremely common. Next time you’re on a plane, take a look at the in-flight magazine. Filled with sponsored content. Read your favorite fashion or lifestyle blog. Again, you’ll likely see sponsored content. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing; if anything, I think content creators are getting smarter about sponsored content and ensuring that quality isn’t compromised just because the piece of content happens to be paid for.
4. Content marketing will be more closely integrated with other marketing efforts. Similar to how social media has integrated into the realm of marketing over the past five or so years, content marketing will move from what might be a siloed position within an organization to be more closely aligned with general marketing efforts. In 2015, more companies will understand the role of a content marketer and have a clear understanding of how the role fits in seamlessly under the umbrellas of communications, marketing, public relations and advertising. Content marketers will become valuable advisors within departments, and their input and recommendations will be incorporated into future marketing plans and initiatives.
Jessica Lawlor is a public relations professional and freelance writer in the Philadelphia area. Her work has been published on Ragan’s PR Daily, Muck Rack, Brazen Careerist, Mediabistro, Business Insider and AOL Jobs. She blogs at JessicaLawlor.com about getting gutsy- stepping outside your comfort zone to reach your goals and live a life that makes you truly happy. Connect with her on Twitter.
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