Content marketing is simple enough if you’ve got a clear plan of exactly how you’re going to meet your company goals. While everyone starts to make New Year’s resolutions to diet, exercise more or work harder, it is probably time for you to start setting your own goals for your business.
Creating a brand new marketing strategy for the New Year now will put you ahead of the game and make that post-festive period a little bit easier.
Many businesses tend to focus on the nitpicky marketing techniques that customers won’t really notice and ignore the big winners. So what are the core marketing strategies you should be trying in 2019 to give your company a big push? Here’s nine.
- Make a connection with your audience
Your customers are, without hesitation, the most important part of your business.
So as the new year chimes in, you need to check whether you’re staying current with them and their needs.
What device is being used the most to access your products & services? What time of day are you reaching the most people? What are some of the user experience bottlenecks that may impact the retention and engagement rates on your digital platform?
This might seem really nitpicky, but it’s the core foundation to a successful content marketing plan. Because content, without a strong digital foundation is useless.
Once you’ve figured out the extent to which your overall digital experience is optimal, you need to move on to the next step in your marketing strategy: personalized content for each of your specific target audience.
By making your content specific to the audience you are targeting the most, you will attract more buyers and create a bigger customer base as more and more people interact with your content. Keep your content relatable to your customers you need to speak their language.
If you’re aiming towards to 20-34 age bracket for example, your content wouldn’t be accessible via desktop only. You need to make sure everything on your website is accessible via smartphones and market your products via social media.
By making sure you look at the needs of the younger generation too, you’ll be able to understand them more to market towards them.
Run surveys on what your audience wants from you and work from it. A lot of those will be based around your digital reputation and the convenience of your company, so make sure your website is easy to access and simple to understand.
- Invest in content
You might be surprised to hear that the ads on your website (or other websites!) probably aren’t doing the favors you thought they would when you first invested in them. In fact, pop up ads and banners are not only highly distracting and off-putting for those visiting your site, they’re also very old school.
A lot of people regularly using a desktop are already way ahead of the game with you on this and will have a ad-blocker installed. However not all is lost on your journey to get to the top of Google search results. You need to invest heavily in content that works to attract visitors to your website.
If you’re uploading original content regularly, you are more likely to start ranking than by using those flashy ads you’ve painted all over your pages.
But when you publish content, it’s not just about flooding the internets with new articles. It’s important to consider SEO here. Your job as a content marketer is to anticipate your customers’ needs and what they will be searching for online. And to configure your articles accordingly in the content management system you use for your site so that Google can easily index your content, understand what they’re about and rank them accordingly.
On the technical side, for example, if you’re in the financial services marketing business, make sure your meta description uses the right finance keywords, you have alternative text for each of your images tagged with the primary keyword of your article, check that you have right keyword density and use those keywords at least once in your H1, H2 headings throughout the article.
Make sure you don’t stop there, though – once someone arrives on your article page don’t forget to link to other internal pages to keep the visitor on your site longer. The longer a session duration on your site, the more Google will see you as a trusted source of information and worthy of a top spot in search results.
- Use video marketing
For many online users searching for information or simply doing a scroll through social media, video is a huge attraction. It’s accessible, an easy way to absorb information and an activity which doesn’t require much effort on the behalf of the viewer.
Not sure you know how powerful video is so here’s a quick stat: YouTube is the second most powerful search engine in the world which is why it’s so important that you incorporate video into your marketing strategy and use it well.
A major thing to consider when doing videos is to make sure you use subtitles. Many people looking at a video on their mobile won’t want to turn the sound on and will scroll past if they can’t understand what’s going on without it. Additionally, as of 2018, using captions is a ADA compliance website rule that is mandatory to all websites in the United States.
Keep every video short, engaging and under 45 seconds to keep your users engaged as attention spans are shortening. Make your content interesting by using visual overlays on top of audio and keep switching up the camera angles to keep the audience engaged.
- Use social media well
Don’t overlook the importance of your company’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. If you have a loyal social media following, Google will take this into account when ranking your content online. Publish a variety of content types on your social media channels to give your brand a lift as well as boosting your search rankings.
Quick tip: use social media scheduling software to post for you at times you know you’ll be away from the office or too busy to remember, such as weekends or busy days at work.
Use video, polls and infographics to keep your posts simple, easy to digest and friendly on the eye to make sure your audience doesn’t skip past it.
Consider having popular faces do a ‘takeover day’, too. For example, as a fitness wear seller, it is definitely a good idea to pay an influencer to get involved with your product and look after your social media for the day.
Their audience will bring you a large, new following to boost your business and increase sales. People are more likely to buy from you once they’ve seen your product used. By getting an influencer to test a product out and give a positive review, you’re automatically making yourself more reliable in the eyes of your ideal customers.
- Ensure your content can be voice searched.
With the popularity of Amazon’s Alexa increasing it’s now more important than ever to make sure your content is accessible via voice search.
Searching with voice is the easiest and most convenient option for many online users but the main problem companies face with this is that only the top results are given as answers. You need to aim to be one of those top results.
Optimize your digital strategy locally to ensure locations are picked up by voice search devices. Geotagging your business on social media and your website will also work in your favor to boost local page views.
Create location specific material to attract nearby customers and consider investing in social media advertisements. These will boil down an audience to the people who will be most interested in your content and show it to them, rather than wasting a lot of money of ads aimed at people who do not care.
- Use analytics
The best way to keep up with your audience and make your content relatable to them is to use analytics. By watching out for the key trends in the online behavior of your target audience, you’ll be able to see what they want from you much easier.
Start to think about the audience you want to target in 2019 now to prepare well for the New Year.
For example, many people will be making resolutions in January. If there is something about your business that will help people achieve those resolutions, target those people with your content.
If you’re a business running a money management app, great, begin creating content now on how people can recover financially after spending hundreds of dollars on holiday gifts. If you’re a supplement company, great, start telling people how your products will help them to achieve their fitness goals in the New Year. It really is as simple as that. Or if you’re a custom apparel company, right content on why people should invest in new clothing in early 2019.
- Keep up with the trends of 2019
Keeping your business in line with what your clients want will definitely optimize your sales in 2019.
Run campaigns aimed at telling your customers exactly how your brand will improve their life in the New Year and go from there, keeping a lookout for trends.
Live broadcasting is set to be big in 2019 as more people reach out to get their information first hand in real-time. As social media makes it challenging for content to be seen by a larger audience, the time has come to give information out live as this way your audience is immediately notified that you are streaming.
Consider using competitions as a good way to get people involved in your lifestreams and encourage interaction from your audience in the comments. Post links to your website throughout the stream and keep people interested and clicking.
- Make use of artificial intelligence
Chatbots are set to be the biggest form of artificial intelligence in 2019 as an easy automated customer service channel. The immediate response from these bots will give a human feeling to your business with a personal touch and help your customers get their questions answered faster.
You should also look into predictive analytics solutions to create personalized and dynamic relationship with your customers.
- Create interactive content
Getting your audience personally involved with your content is not only a great way to keep them on your site, but also to get their feedback on some of your marketing techniques.
Use polls to keep your audience clicking. Make the topics relevant as to not come across as advertisements and consider things you would like to know about your audience.
Do you want to know what your customers like the most about your brand? What they’d like to see more of? How happy they are with your content? If they can tell you quickly and anonymously through a poll, they will.
Infographics also perform really well at giving the reader a lot of key information on a topic in a very short amount of time. These can be made quickly and easily to round up articles and briefly explain subjects. Make them colorful and well illustrated to grab digital users’ attention.
So what have we taken away from these tips? The bottomline is you need to know your audience and what they are looking for.
Reach out to them in every way possible, whether it’s as straightforward as creating a great website or aiming for the top Google search results hits to be read out on Amazon Echo.
Make sure content is reaching your website thick and fast, even if it means investing in a copywriter to help you create compelling content.
Use live streaming to get information out to your audience quickly, and consider using competitions & quizzes such as History of the American Civil War as a way to keep people coming back for more.
Also, explore investing in chatbot technologies as artificial intelligence continues to expand to give your customers a speedy, personalised customer service experience.
And most importantly, try to see your audience as people, not just as numbers. By looking at the way people search and what they want to know, you’ll be able to adjust to their needs and create a brand that they will love and keep coming back to for its personal approach.
Even implementing just two of these points in 2019 will have a huge impact on your business and keep your brand growing visibility and getting new customers online.