Content marketing plays a pivotal role in the success of any business.
Without it, marketing efforts would be reduced to mere self-promotion and shameless advertising.
This strategy might seem like the product of our digital age, but in reality, its roots date back to the 18th century when Benjamin Franklin started publishing his Poor Richard’s Almanac in order to promote his printing business.
In other words, content marketing has managed to evolve and survive to this day and even become indispensable to marketing in general.
Its ability to change and adapt to new requirements and needs of modern users is what makes it so effective. That’s why it’s important to keep an eye on the latest tech trends as they will impact content marketing.
1. Artificial Intelligence
This technology has been around for quite some time, but its use has been mainly focused on collecting, processing, and interpreting huge amounts of customer data. Needless to say, this data-driven approach provided marketers with valuable insights into what their target audiences want and need.
However, the latest developments in the fields of AI’s subsets, machine learning, and natural language processing, add different dimensions to leveraging this advanced technology for content marketing.
1. Content Personalization
It’s important to define that the term content doesn’t refer only to blog posts and articles.
Product descriptions, email copy, product recommendations, and customer interaction also fall under the category of content marketing. And AI can ensure that every segment of content marketing is properly personalized.
For example, writing product descriptions is a time-consuming and challenging task, particularly when there are so many similar items that have to be described accurately. Also, it’s not a good idea to resort to copy-paste when writing about different variants of the same product because it’s will affect search engine optimization and make it hard for visitors to find and learn more about every individual product.
Alibaba, China’s retail giant, has introduced an AI-powered tool for writing the original and optimized product description copy. It analyzes millions of existing examples and comes up with personalized content.
2. Content Creation
Generating product descriptions isn’t exactly something that can be considered content creation.
Technology still has a long way to go until there’s a tool that can create unique, creative, and engaging pieces of content at the same level as human writers.
However, content creation robots have been used increasingly in order to write simple stories, such as sports or stock market reports and overviews. Heligoraf is the Washington Post’s artificial intelligence reporter that wrote hundreds of articles about high-school football games in the Washington D.C. area.
3. Improved Engagement
Conversations with customers are of vital importance when it comes to building loyalty and trust. Answering different product-related questions and addressing various customer issues is something that is of paramount importance for customer experience.
Since no customer support team can be available at all times, brands can make themselves more accessible with the help of AI chatbots capable of mimicking human interaction and more than uttering predefined phrases and sentences.
Such conversational chatbots can do wonders for a customer retention strategy and engagement.
2. Voice Search
An increasing number of people use their digital assistants such as Alexa or Cortana in order to search the internet.
This fact inevitably changes the way content is consumed.
First of all, when a query is performed, the digital assistant usually reads the top ranking result, which means that brands have to optimize their content properly in order to reach their target audience.
The difference between a text and a voice search lies in the fact that the latter is longer and mainly in the form of a question. It’s due to the fact that people are more descriptive and spontaneous in their spoken queries.
Here are some tips that could help you take advantage of this trend:
- Think about search intent, that is, why your audience is performing a particular search and what they want to achieve. There are three types of search intent: informational, transactional, and navigational. By understanding which one of these your potential customers are using can help you optimize your content for voice search.
- Try to get featured snippets or the so-called “zero” position result that comes in an answer box.
- Use Schema Structured Data, which refers to the information between your URL and the meta description. It should contain images, ratings, votes, and different details about that piece of content. For example, if we’re talking about a recipe, then cooking time, level of difficulty, and calorie count can come in handy.
3. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
These two technologies haven’t yet reached their peak but they’re becoming more widespread every day.
Still, many people have had the opportunity to try out augmented reality (AR) through different Snapchat and Instagram filters. Also, not so long ago, the Pokemon frenzy had people walking around with their heads buried in their smartphones, looking for virtual monsters.
When it comes to virtual reality (VR), although it’s still expensive for the average user, many brands use it for supercharging their marketing efforts.
Both VR and AR create immersive experiences and take storytelling to the next level.
However, despite the obvious benefits of these advanced technologies, such as hyper-personalization and gaining a competitive edge, you should first establish whether your content is relevant in terms of VR. For example, IKEA allows its customers to see what a particular piece of furniture would look like in their apartment with the help of this technology, and it makes sense.
Also, Sephora’s AR-powered Virtual Artist enables the company’s customers to try on make-up virtually and see how it fits them.
But, a small B2B company that sells software won’t see many benefits of investing in this technology, apart from doing it for the sake of novelty.
Keeping pace with the latest tech trends is essential for content marketing, but only if these new technologies are properly implemented. Early adopters will surely highly benefit from leveraging advanced tools and approaches to content marketing, so make sure to find the one that fits your company and industry and make use of it.
About the Author
Michael has been working in marketing for almost a decade. His wide range of clients has made him knowledgeable about different subjects. He has recently rediscovered a passion for writing, and you can read more of Michael’s work at Qeedle.