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Now I’m sure by now content marketing is a marketing strategy you are familiar with, but here’s a rundown on how it works;

A business creates a piece of content and publishes online and promoting it in order to get new (and existing) customers to engage with your content and familiarise themselves with what your brand and what you do. Providing prospects with content that entertains and informs will draw them closer to your brand and drive potential business. Content Marketing is considered a way of stimulating a prospects interest in your brand without actually advertising it Directly.

Here are some content marketing trends to be aware of and potentially take advantage of in 2017.

Chinese New Year

The Chinese New Year is always a good trend to jump on in the new year because it’s a huge social event and gets people across the globe talking. The tradition is associated with happiness and generosity and adopting some of the Chinese culture by creating traditional looking imagery for social media, sharing stories of the holiday and its history this time will drive engagement on social media and other platforms. Businesses tend to celebrate the Chinese New Year to add cultural value to the brand and promote diversity. 1 in every 6 people is Chinese and showing enthusiasm and celebrating one of the biggest Chinese traditions by sharing thoughtful content is bound to drive engagement, get more people interested in your brand and stem better customer relationships.

chinese new year advert by Mcdonalds

Here’s an example of the US brand McDonalds adopting some Chinese culture through some of their online content.

a person holding a mobie phone displaying pokemon go!

Augmented Reality

Blowing up in late 2016 Augmented and Virtual reality took to the web by storm. Although virtual reality isn’t easily accessible for the average consumer, brands look at using ‘augmented’ reality to create a new relationship with their customers through this technology on smartphones and tablets.

This is a trend that will carry on throughout 2017 as the technology keeps on developing. It’s this semi-immersive content that gives prospects an excuse to interact with a brand and see your brand from a completely different angle. Examples of augmented reality campaigns are 360 still images, 360 rolling videos and 360 virtual tours that can be assessed by the average smartphone. This type of content gets a lot of engagement because users are new to the technology and are still experimenting with it.

An example of an augmented reality campaign is Niantic’s/Nintendo’s Pokémon Go game. The founders of Pokémon go used this augmented reality technology and its hype to create an app that allowed users to catch famous Pokémon from the 90’s and early 2000’s. The company received $35 million dollars within the first two weeks of its release and it has over 500 million downloads worldwide to date. It is now worth over $17 billion.

Paying Influencers

Influencer marketing has become very popular over the past 12 months and will be no exception in 2017, as it is becoming a more mature way of promoting brands through other people’s content. Brands are constantly challenged with forever changing social algorithms, ad blocking and bot fraud through online advertising. Paying an influencer to represent your brand allows businesses to target a very specific following and also eliminate some of the problems that come with general online advertising. Influencer marketing isn’t something new, but 2017 will see a rise in influencers and brands co-operating with them in order to target specific demographics.

According to Forbes magazine, 60% of brands implemented influencer marketing into their 2016 marketing strategy and according to a survey taken out by Chute, the figure is supposedly going to rise to 75% in 2017.

Live Streaming

Live broadcasting on different platforms will become the norm in 2017 and is definitely a content marketing trend every brand should be jumping on. As the functionality became available late 2016 brands were using the ability to live stream as a PR stunt to engage with consumers. 2017 will see the functionality mature as social media platforms make it easier to utilise and brands will use it as a tool for growing their networks, connecting with their audience and creating instant 2-way engagement.

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Twitch and Periscope support live broadcasting from handheld devices and should be taken advantage of in 2017.

A good example of a brand using live streaming to its potential was Buzzfeed’s attempt back in April. The video consisted of two people wrapping elastic bands around a watermelon to see how many it would take before the watermelon burst. Although the idea of the video seemed ridiculous it ended up accumulating over 800,000 viewers and was so popular because of the way the brand constantly engaged with viewers in the comments.

Investing In Content Promotion (Platforms Keep Moving Towards Revenue Growth)

Year upon year it becomes much harder to reach your audience organically online with platforms from Google to Facebook forever changing their algorithms to sway you towards spending money to promote your content and drive traffic to your website. To compete with other brands in 2017, it’s going to be almost unavoidable. If you want more engagement and to target a specific demographic valuable to you, you’ll have to invest some money into promotion because organic reach will continue to diminish. 2017 will see a higher investment in content promotion on social platforms.

There will be plenty of more marketing trends presented to us in 2017, but these are our predictions. A lot can happen in 12 months though so be sure to let us know what your predictions are.

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About the author

Relative is a creative marketing agency run by brothers, Rob and Si Barlow. We really work on our relationships. It’s why we have client partners who have happily worked with us for years. Building strong connections is what we do – with our clients, and for them with their chosen audiences.

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