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With 2023 almost upon us and the economic outlook uncertain, content remains king in digital marketing. Worldwide, global content marketing revenue is expected to hit $137 billion by 2026. That’s no doubt down to its proven effectiveness: targeted content, relevant to the reader’s position in the purchase process, yields 72% higher conversion rates. Another revealing statistic is that 70% of people now get information from blogs instead of traditional advertisements.

While these figures give some idea of the current content marketing landscape, the sheer volume of content available now offers a severe market-penetration and engagement challenge for content producers. So, with 2023 at hand, and every economic forecast pointing toward recession, it’s time to look at the trends in content marketing that will be shaping strategies for the next 12 months.

Strong focus on user experience

With so much choice, and consumers increasingly informed as to their options, user experience matters more than ever. An example of how quickly consumers ‘bounce’ and leave a website they’re not engaged with can be seen in Google Analytics’ dwell time benchmark of between two and four minutes. If you want people to stick around, you need to make everything easy and seamless if you want to keep them engaged. So tools like Google’s Core Web Vitals are essential if you don’t want to be guessing at UX satisfaction.

That means across your digital offering. So make sure all your digital touch points, for example, are mobile-device friendly. There are now 6.6 billion smartphone users worldwide, over 83% of the world’s population. And those users are leaning on their mobile devices for more and more of their online interactions: by 2025, 72% of internet users are expected to rely solely on their smartphone for web access, meaning mobile-device optimisation is an absolute must.

Interactive content

With content already moving toward hyper-personalisation, a key strategic element will be retaining consumer engagement once it’s been grabbed. Interactive content is going to be a critical tool in keeping visitors on your website longer, and provide valuable data on what they’re interested in. Interactive infographics and emails, e-books, reports and how-to guides with clickable content and animation are going to become invaluable tools in marketers’ armoury.

In a September 2022 survey of marketers, more than half of which were B2C marketers, 52% of respondents reported the most effective of these tools was interactive emails, followed by interactive videos or live streaming, polls or quizzes and interactive infographics. This is part of a clear trend toward increasing B2C interactivity: customers are looking for immersive experiences. Current examples include 360° tours of properties available for purchase or short-term rental and virtual tours of holiday destinations, but every sector that offers something customers can actually see should be doing so digitally.

Video

The format described as the “it” format for 2023’ will see investment by 78% of marketers, while LinkedIn have said that ‘people are more interested than ever in video content’, stating that 94% of marketers believe video helps customers understand a product or service better. They go as far as to say that ‘marketers think video marketing is the future of content marketing’.

Metaverse

The growing presence and relevance of the metaverse will make it a space that cannot be ignored if marketers want to engage with younger audiences in particular. It’s where people will interact to socialise, study and work in future, and while it’s still early days, everybody from big brands including Starbucks and Nike to universities are getting involved.

Artificial Intelligence

The days when AI can be left to generate the content itself aren’t quite with us yet, but it’s already changing content generation. From improved chatbot interactions to its role in data analysis and algorithm construction, and even predictive analytics, Forbes have called AI a ‘dynamic game changer’, claiming the limits of what it can do for content marketing ‘don’t exist’.

Offshoring

In We Are Amnet’s 2022 Benchmark Report for Offshore Creative Production, 73% of companies surveyed said they currently offshore creative production or post-production services. That number is going to rise as the economic downturn hits, for several reasons. Talent with skills in emerging martech will be highly sought-after, and those people may either be located distantly or required only on an ad-hoc basis.

Marketers will search for solutions that will save them money without negatively impacting the quality of their work, that will deliver fast turnaround and provide in-country talent with the local knowledge to deliver personalized, multichannel content in different markets. Solutions like Smartshoring®. Talk to us to make sure you’re ahead of the game in 2023 and beyond.

Saskia Johnson

Author Saskia Johnson

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