I’ve spent the past 12+ months discussing with clients who seem to have the same problem: getting their content marketing strategy right. They formulate this issue in different ways (“we want to see actual ROI”, “is blogging really helping us?”, “what is the ideal funnel?” and so on), but one thing is clear: content marketing is getting more and more complicated.

The good news is that both B2B and B2C businesses seem to have moved past the age-old revelation that “content is king”. Most business owners and marketers understand that; now they just want to get into the king’s graces. And let me be blunt: in 2017 it will be harder than ever to get your content marketing strategy right. These five emerging trends account are the reason why:

  1. Video will be the content to rule all other forms of content

According to Syndacast, 74% of all traffic in 2017 will be video. Even more, 52% of marketers agree that video is the type of content that brings the highest ROI. If you come to think about it, it makes sense: everybody loves videos, from the “how-to” ones that are now mandatory for any e-commerce website that actually wants to sell to the cute and fluffy animals that make us laugh.

The real challenge here is not only budget-related (yes, video is more expensive than the written word), but also creativity-related. Not all brands can make funny videos, so they will have to find ways to turn their presentations, ads and social media posts into engaging videos.

  1. Native advertising will reign supreme

The success of companies like Taboola and Outbrain is already showing us that brands need to up their game if they truly want to reach their audiences. Very few people click on “classic” ads anymore, so, once again, you have to get creative. Remember the old “advertorials” in printed magazines? Think about your native advertising strategy as their descendant.

  1. You will need an actual purpose-derived content marketing strategy

Things like “let’s blog every two weeks and update social media daily” no longer fly. Sure, you still need to blog and update social media regularly, but the big question here is: “WHY?”. What do these regular updates bring you?

Answer this question and then move on to integrating all your content marketing efforts into a real funnel – your goal is to direct your buyer persona towards making a purchase and content is your tool. You can no longer afford to be vague about how you are going to do this.

  1. There will be no more content marketing without marketing automation

In 2017, you can’t even think about sending your e-mails manually or not having your CRM linked to your marketing automation tool. Since personalization of every type of content and interaction with (potential) customers is crucial, you need to learn as much as possible about them and marketing automation is here to help you do just that (aside from ridding you of repetitive tasks, of course).

Choose your favorite platform early on, as there is no way you can implement a compelling content marketing strategy without a bit of help in 2017.

  1. Influencer advertising will take off

Over the past year, influencer advertising has already creeped its way into our strategies, but in 2017 it will be its centerpiece. My advice: start scouting the influencers as soon as possible and then move on to coming up with a strategy that solidifies your relationship to them: you will definitely need this in 2017.

 

Not sure what the right content marketing roadmap should look like in 2017 for your brand? Let us help:

 

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