According to the analysts’ and our own projections, the trends that we can expect to see are the following:
1. A surge of corporate blogs
The “corporate” here refers to company blogs. And it’s not necessarily just blogs; there will also be web magazines and similar ambitious content projects. Ever since Facebook bared its teeth and reduced its reach, many have realized that the safest investment is one that we have complete control over, and that social networks are there to help with the distribution.
2. Mobile everything
Users have gone mobile, and they will be spending more and more time on their devices. Strategies that do not take into account the mobile aspect will not be taken seriously; response pages, mobile apps, content that can be accessed on mobile devices and everything else that can be used to reach users will be a crucial element in 2014 when it comes to content marketing and social networks.
3. An even larger number of channels
At the marketing conference we attended in Brno, Phil Nottingham revealed the numbers for different devices, that is, the different modes of shopping: 65% of the users start on a mobile device and finalize the process on a personal computer (61%) or tablet (4%). One of the challenges of the following year will be the production/adaptation of contents for the different channels.
4. Transmedia storytelling
With the growing number of channels, transmedia storytelling – the telling of the same story across different platforms and formats – is on the rise as well. Our example of this type of storytelling is Croatian Sunday Morning, Saturday Night Show, in which we revealed the characters’ background stories prior to the show on Facebook timeline, while the real plot took place on the small screens and “small” social networks (Twitter, Foursquare).
5. Content exploitation
In addition to transmedia storytelling, content exploitation will also be on an upturn. The aforementioned marketing conference in Brno that we visited in November might serve as a good example. After the conference, we designed a Facebook gallery highlighting the key ideas of the lecturers, we wrote a blog post and we produced an infographic with the most important conclusions of individual lecturers. It’s all one story, but told through different angles.
6. Boost in high quality content
Content exploitation does not imply a drop in quality. On the contrary, in the age of the Google Hummingbird where Facebook demands smart contents, quality must be top priority.
7. Emphasis on the visual
The visual will be just as important in 2014 as it has been so far. For instance, you can use the headline as well as the opening photo to draw the attention of the users to your blog posts. These are your two options when trying to persuade people to click on and open an article. So it is crucial that you devote all your attention to both of these elements. The headline must be top-notch and the photo must give the user the extra nudge to open the article. Of course, the visual is equally important in other contexts, and it will rule 2014.
Instagram and Vine: the two platforms that will rule the mobile video sector. How? However you decide. We started with Vine tips back in June, and we are certain that microvideo will be the content marketing hit of the year.
9. Analysis, analysis, analysis
We needn’t even mention it, yet we’re going to anyway, content marketing project analysis will continue to be among the most important elements. Of course, it not only serves to show you whether you’ve reached your goal, but also to modify and test your existing plans. Today’s content marketing software gives fairly precise assessments that it seems like a waste not to take advantage of them, practically on a daily basis.