Brand Copywriting And Content Marketing Trends in 2019
Content creation and storytelling have been cornerstone promotional techniques for a long time. Back in the 1930s, Procter & Gamble (P&G) invented the soap opera in an effort to reach housewives. They produced and sponsored dozens of “branded content plays” like The Guiding Light and As The World Turns in order to reach that demographic.
More recently, Lego created a feature film, The Lego Movie, which proves the brand is so universally beloved they can bring you back to the theater for the sequel … and you still won’t suspect you’re being marketed to.
While brands have been creating sponsored content for generations — and they’ve awed us with their ingenuity — the era of content marketing is only just beginning.
Content marketing will grow a healthy 16% to become a $412 billion industry by 2021, according to recent research from Technavio.
Today, content marketing reflects the evolution in communication style between customer and brand. Instead of the old, one-sided message brands pushed on customers, branded copywriting, video, and other forms of content are open for two-way engagement with customers.
A terrific example of this shift is immortalized in Dove’s viral video, “You’re more beautiful than you think”, which gained 114 million views in a single month, making it the most viewed video advertisement of all time. The idea stemmed from marketing research that showed just 4% of women consider themselves beautiful.
The term Content Marketing as it has appeared in recent years is no longer deemed side work tasked to marketing interns. Content marketing is marketing. While content marketing is still a relatively new phenomenon, it is the key to engaging with customers, generating new leads, and building a large, loyal brand following.
As content marketing continues to dominate and customers continue to demand more from brands, these copywriting trends will guide content creation and consumption in 2019.
Customers are equipped with more knowledge than ever before, so they can read your brand (and your competitors’ brands) like a wide open storybook. Customers expect genuine content from their brands so they can quickly determine whether the brand aligns with their lifestyle. Brands can attract and retain more customers by creating consistent, authentic content.
Authentic content means blogs, videos, social media posts, podcast episodes, speaking engagements, and other content forms that contribute to the customer brand experience while aligning with the brand’s vision and values.
Creating authentic, branded content is no longer an option for brands that want to stay in business. When 86% of customers say that authenticity is a key factor in deciding what brands they choose to support, a brand’s content becomes crucial to a brand’s success. Consistent, authentic content builds trust, and customer trust is the holy grail for brands.
2. Content Strategy: Go In With a Plan
Content will continue to reign as king for the foreseeable future, but even a king needs a strategy to effectively grow his power. According to research from the Content Marketing Institute, 65% of content marketers have a strategy, and they’re better off for it.
When creating your content strategy, consider three things:
- The world of marketing has shifted from one-lane Marketing St. to the customer-brand highway. Your content is not the final word anymore; it is organic and will evolve through customer engagement.
- Every message that comes from your business should connect to the larger strategy.
- Develop a content strategy that aligns with your brand’s unique goals.
Every business is different, and your content strategy should reflect that. Of course, all businesses can benefit from starting with general goals like lead generation, SEO, and influencer marketing, but the best strategies go much deeper. Design a content strategy that helps your business make the most of your content and work toward specific goals.
3. Personalized Content
With the amount of content fighting for your audience’s attention, there is no room for general, one-size-fits-all content anymore.
Your role as a brand is to create custom content to build trust, gain attention, and drive revenue. Custom content has an impressive ROI: a whopping 78% of consumers believe brands who create custom content are interested in building genuine, meaningful relationships. If that’s not enough to send you to the drawing board, 61% of consumers say their buying decisions are influenced by custom content.
When your customers are open to building meaningful relationships, more doors open for growth based on trust and loyalty. People are fully in control of their customer experience, so work with them to create the best experience possible and you will see results.
4. Focus on Customer Relationships
We can’t say it enough: customers have the control, so treating them as individuals will get you much further.
Strategize your content marketing to focus on customer relationships. Relationships between brands and customers are now more give-and-take, continuous circles of engagement, as opposed to the one-time transactional relationships we fostered in the past. Once brands accept this new way of customer communication, generating leads will become much more meaningful and effective.
- The Old Way: Brands created content and expected customers to embrace it, no questions asked. Brands viewed the customer as just a barrier to their wallet, a faceless consumer that will take what the brand provides without complaint. This used to work because customers didn’t have as many options and information as they do today.
- The New Way: Customers have an overwhelming number of options, which gives them the privilege of choosing brands that align with their lifestyle and values. Creating a lot of high quality, personalized content helps to build more meaningful relationships with your customers and persuade them to embrace your brand.
When brands invest in customer relationships through custom content, a better sense of understanding emerges between the brand and the customer. This will come in handy if your brand ever finds itself in hot water or a customer has a poor online shopping experience, for example. With trust comes higher likelihood for forgiveness in these situations.
5. Ditch the Mini-Blogs
The internet went through a phase where bite-sized content reigned. The brief period of social media screenshots, mini-blogs, and bullet points proved one thing: people want substantial, relevant content from brands. In fact, long-form content has better odds of going viral than bite-sized content. According to a recent study by BuzzSumo, lengthier posts are more often shared on social media.
According to a study conducted by Medium, the most effective blog posts took 7 minutes to read and averaged 1,600 words. Short-form is considered 1,000 words or less, while long-form is considered 2,000 words or more.
6. Voice and Chatbots
A recent study by NPR and Edison showed that 81% of users who own a smart audio device are open to learning more skills and audio features created by brands. In addition, 37% of users are already relying on their smart speaker to research brands and products. Incorporating voice and chatbots in your content marketing is a smart move in 2019.
You can create killer content, but if no one sees it then you’re wasting your time. Creating a distribution strategy will be pivotal for brand copywriting in 2019. Distribution strategies include social media, email marketing, physical hard copy distribution, and speaking engagements.
Your brand’s distribution strategy is arguably as important as the content creation strategy. Brands need to be active with their distribution a constantly seek new, creative opportunities for distribution. Adapting to new content distribution outlets will help brands stay relevant with the rapidly changing marketing climate.
8. Evoke Emotion
Tapping into your customers’ emotions through storytelling is a powerful way to reach a wider audience. As a content consumer yourself, you may not be surprised to find some emotions are more powerful than others.
The New York Times recently surveyed 2,500 users to find out why they share content online. They found that people want to share positive experiences, show friends they have great taste, and spur conversation. Brands who evoke awe, laughter, and amusements perform much better than branded content that evokes sadness or anger.
Another, less valiant reason for sharing content is for narcissistic reasons. Buzzfeed quizzes are an excellent example of this.
Ready to Kickstart Your Content Marketing for 2019?
2019 is the year of content marketing, are you ready? If designing and executing a content strategy for your business sounds like a hefty burden, don’t put it off. Call Bareknuckle Brand Marketing and talk to us about our Content Marketing services.