As if this doesn’t describe how many of us have been spending a lot of our time during COVID. Maybe the only word missing is ‘binge.’
But, what about your marketing content. Have you adjusted your strategy to meet this new normal? Are you delivering content through blogs, videos, and podcasts? We are all in agreement that because people are home, we have a captive audience who is paying more attention to brand content than usual, including the C-suite.
In doing my own reading, listening, and watching the latest marketing trends, I thought I would share some findings as you refine or shift your content marketing strategy.
There is no better time to be creating content to use for email newsletters and social media for thought leadership.
- According to Campaign Monitor’s Email Marketing Benchmarks: COVID-19 Edition, “both March and April kept opens strong year over year, with nearly four point increases for both months from 2019 to 2020—an increase more than 20%.”
- According to Marketing Profs COVID-19s Impact on Marketers Content, Investment, and Targeting Strategies, 53% of responders have increased their investment in developing thought leadership content and 56% have increased social content creation.
Takeaway: Your audience is consuming blogs, case studies, articles, and whitepapers, and it is a great way to position your company as thought leaders. Emails are getting opened, so if you have put the ‘newsletter’ tactic on-hold, it’s a good time to dust it off.
Social media, especially on LinkedIn for B2B, is a great way to reach broader and targeted audiences. Companies are missing the boat if they aren’t actively creating and sharing content on social.
Virtual events, video, video meetings, and webinars have absolutely exploded and pretty much define how many of us spend our days… behind a camera. Thanks, COVID. At Clarity Quest, we recommend following this formula:
- Content is “Queen” 😉 – Don’t do a webinar for doing a webinar’s sake. Ask yourself if it could be created in some other format (written, audio) and delivered (newsletter, social, YouTube) differently. Webinars with the greatest success were highly relevant and addressed a very specific problem your audience is experiencing.
- Keep it Short and Simple – 20-25 minutes of content, 5-10-minutes of questions. It’s that simple. No one wants to register to sit through 60-minutes of PowerPoint slides. We sit in these types of meetings all day.
- Record it so your audience can watch it On-Demand. It also becomes a piece of content to include on your website. Our rule of thumb is whoever registered or attended, I send them the link to access it ungated.
Takeaway: Video is a great tool for delivering and explaining complex ideas for audiences tuning in. We caution, don’t overdo it with webinars. Consider using 2-3 minute videos to create the content (or write it out, record a podcast), and deliver it in a newsletter or on social.
People are consuming podcasts even while we adjust to our new routines. Of course, listening to podcasts in the US has seen declines because our commutes have diminished but our habits are in the process of shifting as we adjust to a new normal for an extended timeframe.
- There have been major investments by Spotify in podcasts (Michelle Obama, Joe Rogan). Great news if you have international clients: Europe is experiencing a major adoption of podcasting.
- Listening habits are shifting, the use of smart speakers is growing, people are tuning in at different points in their day, for example, while cooking dinner, when we wake up and go to bed, or during our at-home workouts.
- At Clarity Quest, we have found interviews and conversations with clients or partners work well. We stay away from complex topics where visual support is necessary.
Takeaways: Podcasts are a great way to deliver your content without requiring your audience to be in front of a computer screen and they can listen at any point in the day. It’s another great means for thought leadership.
In summary, our audiences are consuming content by reading, watching, and listening. Find the right balance. When looking at the data, let that guide how you choose to format and deliver. This will keep your audience engaged.