Things happen. And sometimes they trend. Some trends are small, some are so huge they can’t be missed. Some are awesome trends that content marketers can connect with. The internet is flooded with trends, and smart marketers can piggyback on their popularity.
Some trends are long-lasting, while others don’t survive and fade away in a year or less. The same happens with trends in content marketing. Here’s why marketers should not only check popular trends. They must also stay up to date with the dead ones so as not to lose customers because of doing something wrong.
To help figure out which content marketing trends from 2017 shouldn’t be used anymore, here is a short checklist with tips on how to replace them.
Good, Bad, and Ugly in Remarketing and Pop-Up Ads
Probably one of the mistakes customers can’t forgive companies for is shouting loud into a customer’s face “Look, I’m here!” A study by HubSpot proved that 73% of people dislike intrusive ads like pop-ups, while 70% hate to see ads on their smartphones. Autoplay videos can be added to this list as well. So any business that still uses those disruptive advertisements should stop, and encourage customers to stay on their website.
What could be done instead? To prevent evoking negative emotion from prospects and customers, it’s better to provide educational content. Among other content marketing trends that can replace traditional ads are, for example, native advertising, product placement, engaging KOLs, and bloggers who spread the word about the products and services.
As an option, produce videos that can be useful to the target audience. Those may be different ‘how-tos,’ tutorials on product or software usage, detailed guides on creating something, etc.
Not by SEO Alone
Google search still rules, but the algorithms have changed. As a result, marketers can no longer rely solely on SEO. Many old SEO techniques are dangerous to website health, and readers are smart enough to identify articles stuffed with keywords.
What could be done instead? Craft copy for people, personalize each message and embed keywords in text that look and sound natural.
According to Gartner’s research, by 2019, more than half of mobile searches will be voice or visual. Long tail keywords will gradually replace common 2-3 words ones. That’s why, to keep their websites competitive, brands must adapt content according to these requirements.
Unfortunately, Google encouraged SEOs to use crazy keywords, but now that can cause penalties. Keywords should be human-like, because people use real-life language for voice searches, instead of writing ‘buy robot Arizona.’ The same report by Gartner predicts that by 2021, companies that redesign their websites to allow vocal interaction will grow revenue by 30%. To reach that point, consider tailoring content marketing strategy in 2018.
The More-the Better
Unfortunately, there are still cases of businesses sacrificing content quality for quantity. Some think that articles published daily will increase traffic. Others try to make use of breaking news or hot topics and discussions, like a Star Wars movie premiere. Yet, newsjacking (that’s how it is called) is not always effective. Recent research shows that the number of article shares on social media decreases if there’s too much content that’s similar.
What could be done instead? Stop producing excessive volumes of content like Buzzfeed does. Stop talking about things too many others have already talked about. Instead, generate some valuable pieces of content that are somewhere in between the business’ expertise and customer’s needs. Consider using expert writing services such as CopyCrafter or others that can create virtually any type of copy.
In Facebook We [Do Not] Trust
Organic Facebook reach has faded out – the algorithms have changed, which impacts brand visibility in the news feed. Previously, marketers considered using Facebook to be a key content marketing trend. Currently, they are losing customer attention and have observed a significant decrease in reach and engagement.
What could be done instead? Referral traffic will be harder to get, but not impossible. Craft content the target audience likes to comment and share. The type of content depends on the type of business. Some good options are quizzes, polls, expert tips, animation, and videos. Instagram, which is also owned by facebook, can be used instead. It has become more attractive to businesses in terms of reach and advertising possibilities, having nearly 800 million active users monthly.
Marketing Automation: I, Robot
Being pressed for time, many marketers choose to use different automation tools – starting with social media posting and ending with sending ‘personalized’ emails. They are easy to use and save time. But in fact, they bring a sense of inhuman communication, especially when it includes bots on messengers or in online support.
What could be done instead? If 24/7 support it needed, make it real 24/7 support, not computer code answering ‘please, stay on the line,’ etc. To get a social media post published at a specific time, try to find a couple of minutes for that, at least on Facebook. The reason is that many platforms tells the reader what posting tool was used. Examples are Buffer, Hootsuite, and others. Also, if a post could lead to a heated discussion, personal attention allows an immediate response.
This is not the full list of anti trends in content marketing. Each marketer may have their own personal “never-ever-repeat” errors, and another list of those that proved effective over time. No matter what the experience, an audit is strongly recommend, to allow revising content strategy from time to time, and stop outdated approaches. That will help not only to keep a high standard of materials delivered but also to win customers’ hearts instead of annoying them.