From interactive content to the ‘presidential we’ – content marketing trends

Have you got the memo about interactive content?

79% of content marketers already deploying interactive content plan to use it more over the coming year. This is up from 75% who said they’d use it more in 2016.Interactive content

That’s the headline stat from ‘The Symphony of Connected Interactive Content Marketing‘. This is the latest release from the Content Marketing Institute and ion interactive.

ion interactive CEO, Justin Talerico, gave an emphatic appraisal of the report’s findings. He said: “The transition from boring, dumb content to engaging, smart content is rolling and gaining steam.”

That may be. But, 56% of content marketers are yet to be convinced by interactive content. So, what are the potential benefits for content marketers? This study revealed all.

Let’s start with a definition. Always a tricky one to pin down, researchers used the following description of interactive content to conduct the study:

“Content that engages participants in a two-way dialogue or exchange, often providing utility and usefulness (e.g. interactive infographics; self-assessments or report cards; quizzes; calculators; interactive eBooks; configurators or solution builders; and interactive lookbooks). Interactive content also may be structured to be dynamic.”

The vast majority of content marketers surveyed viewed interactive content as highly beneficial. And, for a range of different reasons. The most widely cited were its attention-grabbing qualities (87% agreed) and lead nurturing capabilities (75% agreed).

Here’s an overview of how content marketers perceived the benefits of interactive content:

*Table courtesy of Content Marketing Institute

So where’s best to start? Well, infographics have now overtaken assessments (e.g. polls, tests and surveys) as the most widely used. So, that could be a good spot to dip your toe.

But, before you rip up your content marketing plan, just remember that traditional content marketing methods are still the go-to options. According to Content Marketing Institute, 74% of content marketers think blogging will be most crucial to marketing success, while 50% reckon it will be email newsletters.

Content marketing is an objective success

The ratio of content marketers who are meeting their primary objectives has risen, according to a new study from Starfleet Media

This ‘2017 Benchmark Report on B2B Content Marketing and Lead Generation’ announced this trend. This is a complete survey of 473 qualified content marketers during Q1 2017.

24% of content marketers surveyed claimed to have been “very successful” in attempting to achieve their primary objectives. This is up 6% on 2017, when fewer than one-fifth of respondents stated the same.

And, there are other key indicators that suggest content marketers are getting better at meeting their objectives.

According to the report, 34% of B2B marketers intend to dedicate more of their budget to content marketing and lead generation over the coming year.

Many of these respondents plan to offset this additional investment by pulling the plug on ‘traditional marketing activities’. This implies that content marketing is now outperforming methods we’d come to accept as part of the marketing landscape.

Unsurprisingly, this extra funding will go to additional content. On average, B2B companies published 5.5 pieces of content during 2016, compared to 4.5 in 2015. External production companies seem to be creating most of this content.

With content marketers becoming ever more successful and B2B industries confident enough to dedicate additional resources to the technique, the future looks bright for content marketing.

Spotted in the news…

In the UK, we have an anachronistic yet quintessentially British grammatical trope called the ‘majestic plural’ – better known as the ‘royal we’.

Never one to be outshone, it seems Donald Trump has been attempting to coin his very own ‘presidential we’. At least, that’s the only rational explanation for the mysterious tweet he sent out earlier this week, which read simply “We”. Needless to say, the Twittersphere was quick to start firing out punchlines.

The lesson for content marketers? Being succinct is a virtue – but, there are limits!

More from: Blogging / Content Strategy / Digital Marketing / Web Copywriting / Weekly Round-Up