In recent years, content marketing has wrestled its way to the top of the marketing heap. It’s proven itself to be less expensive and more effective than outbound marketing, as the Content Marketing Institute notes. It’s also provided a bit of an antidote to “ad overload” and the resulting rise of ad blocker use. But today’s content marketing looks a bit different from the content marketing people were doing just a few years ago. And the same will be true for the future of content marketing.
Thanks to changes in technology and the way people consume and interact with content, it’s likely that content marketing will continue to change as the years progress.
In the very near future, content will be much more immersive and integrated into people’s day-to-day lives than it is today. With the rise of smart home devices like Google Home and Amazon Echo, people don’t have to go very far to access content.
Instead of logging on to their computers or tapping out commands on their smartphones, all people need to do is speak. Although not every home has a smart device in it (yet), sales and shipments of the devices have sharply increased. In 2016, six million units shipped, and, in 2017, 24 million units shipped. It remains to be seen how many houses will have their own Echo or Google Home by the end of this year.
Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are also changing the face of content, making it more immersive as time goes on.
Business Insider predicts that VR and AR are about to experience a massive expansion in total revenue, as big companies such as Google and Facebook, and small brands and businesses continue to invest in the technology.
The Future of Content Marketing Strategy
Technology doesn’t only mean that the type of content is changing, or that the way people access content changes. It is also shifting how brands go about creating a content marketing strategy.
As Neil Patel puts it, content strategies of the future are moving beyond finding a team of writers and focusing on producing and promoting lots of written content. Content marketers should instead focus on a multi-pronged strategy.
That means coming up with goals while exploring ways to use tech and newer forms of content to help a brand reach those goals.
A shift in content creation doesn’t have to mean that your content team will grow, though. The rise of artificial intelligence reduces the tasks that require manual labor. Now, marketers outsource them to machines. According to LinkedIn Marketing Solutions, AI can easily handle several content marketing tasks, including:
- Content creation (in a limited way)
- Analyzing and sorting images
- Recommending and personalizing content
- Communicating with customers or audience
Who’s Leading the Future of Content Marketing
In many ways, it’s a race to see who’s going to create the technology that pushes content marketing forward. The technology content marketers need to create unique and immersive content already exists. You can use AI to sort through and tag content. And augmented and virtual reality enhanced content lets customers virtually try before they buy.
These companies are the ones that will help drive content marketing into a bright future.