2017 closed, what does 2018 have for digital marketers in term of content creation and marketing?
It has been some years since I last posted my predictions about the digital field. For the last few days since this year begun, I have had this urge to share what I am looking forward too in this space.
When I used to do this, it helped me direct my work and move forward with the current trend, focus on the new skills, technologies and ideas that were predicted to happen. It helped me get to work.
So today here are my predictions on how digital will interact with content in 2018;
a. Original content creation will continue to move in-house.
If you have not yet invested in original content development for your digital content then the trends are leaving you behind. 2018 is going to be for creating content in-house. Companies like Amazon, Apple, and Netflix have continued to make headlines for investing heavily in original content on their missions to compete with Hollywood.
The impact of this will have brands think of content as its own department away from all those sections it can be/has been fixed in. Just like social media before, piled under marketing and PR, MD’s office and the rest; Content Departments are going to be developed in 2018, and this will make measuring ROI(my best post of all this) even more important.
Secondly, agencies will have to continue creating – and accelerating – differentiated offerings. Legacy relationships built on execution alone may give way to more strategic relationships or even a power shift where the brand can demand only the a la carte support it needs.
b. Content will broaden,
Brands will not only have an in-house department for it but the materials will also shift from just written content and paid distribution/promotion to a whole host of services like production, more animation and video- related graphics, voice talent. This is because content is about creating an experience.
We have experimented with some these kinds of contents at Kahill Insights and our clients have loved the animation graphics, the videos too. We are looking forward to developing and focusing mainly on the quality because brands are more likely to be reducing on the numbers of content needed to improve production value of the creations in 2018.
c. Marketers will have to shift eyes from their end goals and look more on ROI
The truth is the amount of content produced now days is overwhelming a lot. We can’t digest it all and finish it. No wonder the data shows engagement with content is going down. This means that marketers need to become laser-focused on their end goals and ensure that each investment – whether a piece of content or marketing technology – will pay off. 2018 is firmly a year focused on the performance of content marketing and everything we do must drive business results. Not just simply exist.
d. The struggle will continue for big brands
I am not sorry to be saying this but big brands have been and will continue to play catch with these new continuing changes in the marketplace. Consumer preference is fragmenting, with more choosing small and niche. Our parents’ generation trusted the big brands. But today we seek out small brands that are often purpose-driven. And given how much we buy products online, owning physical shelf space at major retailers is not as important as a marketing vehicle. Hello, Nakumatta and the rest still trying to swim.
This means digital marketing evens the playing field more than ever and allows smaller brands to compete with the mass brands of yesteryear. With the power of storytelling at the center of their strategies, these are not afraid to lead with their core beliefs and values.
e. Personalization will deliver on its promises.
We have already seen that personalization has expanded far beyond using the customer’s first name in 2017, this 2018 it will be BOTs popping up as brands to offer an online experience that will actually feel personal. Individual online experiences will be both curated and custom. What you see when you visit a company’s website will look different if you are visiting from a hotel in Murchison Falls or Kabale after just seeing a new movie on Netflix, visited another site, versus Entebbe airport while waiting for your flight.
If you are a smart content marketer, this will create a massive competitive opportunity for your work.