The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed many industries worldwide. How has it changed content marketing, and is it for the better?
Every business needs to sit down and have a long, hard look at its content marketing strategy and consider how to adapt to the way audiences now feel after spending so much time inundated by media during lockdowns. We spoke to many experts and business owners in the field to find out what changes they are making.
It Is Time to Solve Your Customer’s Problems
Since the start of Covid-19, shopping habits have changed drastically. That’s why ensuring your brand stands out in the online marketplace is more important than ever.
People are looking for products and services that can solve their problems –whether that’s financial hardship, working-from-home struggles, or boredom day after day. Showcasing how your products and services provide solutions to these issues is key to getting customers on board with your brand.
This means focusing on creating good customer experiences and marketing initiatives that demonstrate the value of your brand. The good news is that you don’t have to be an online marketing expert overnight—just start by breaking down customer needs and describing how you plan to tackle them head-on.
That way, you can give people the confidence they need to purchase from your store. In other words – when life gives you lemons, show off how tasty those lemons can be!
Often it’s not just about making a sale but rather about providing a solution – and as we’re all figuring this “new normal” out together, let’s face it, now more than ever, people may just be looking for someone who can give them what they need – solution – much quicker than anyone else! Sustainable success has always been and will continue to rely upon meeting one’s customers’ needs better than anyone else.
“This has shifted the focus of content marketing to be more about providing helpful resources to clients (thereby increasing soft brand awareness), rather than nudging them through the sales funnel” – Daniella Bell of Scribly.
Build Their Trust
Before you can solve their problems, you need to build their trust that you know how to do so.
“Brands that want to build a foundation of trust and continue in their respective customer journeys need to measure, analyze, and understand common denominators and patterns – this will help level-set where their customers are. By measuring and drawing insights, brands can implement well-informed decisions and actions that enable us to build that trust further” – Jae Lee of Acoustic.
Get Online If You Aren’t Already, and Strategize From There
Another way the pandemic changed content marketing is now customers are primarily online. Isn’t it time you were? And once you’re there, do you know what to do?
“Physical brick and mortar shops will fight for survival, and they have no choice but to venture into online commerce” – Mazen Aloul of Web Quest SEO.
That means that SEO content and keywords are important.
“Getting found in search results and publishing epic content is what is going to allow certain businesses to be found in online searches—especially because the competition for several keywords is going to increase as more and more businesses go online” – Leesa Klich.
Videos and Other Interactive Content Will Rule
“The beauty of developing a video marketing plan is that you are making it easier for the viewer to be exposed to the information you are trying to communicate.” Chris Sandoval
The global pandemic has shifted how businesses communicate with their customers, and video has become a go-to choice for staying connected in 2020. In the early days of the outbreak, companies quickly pivoted to virtual events as in-person gatherings became unsafe.
Video conferences, chats, webinars, and live streams offer creative ways to continue providing valuable content to an online audience. But one of the most notable shifts came from companies moving more and more of their marketing online using video.
From tutorials to promotional videos and even interactive gaming experiences—creative solutions have emerged everywhere as businesses try new ways to engage customers through visuals. Of course, it helps that most people now have access to cameras and editing software due to the widespread adoption of smartphones!
Thanks to advanced technology, making a high-quality video is easier than ever before, so companies have taken full advantage of this newfound opportunity to communicate their message. It’s safe to say that without Covid-19, who knows where video marketing would be today?
“The most obvious effect of COVID in marketing is the shift to digital content. Virtual conferences and webinars have become the go-to tool for information dissemination and brand awareness, and what’s most interesting is so far, we’re seeing no content fatigue” – Sam Jacobs of Revenue Collective.
Understand What Is Important NOW
Nails, hair, and beauty have pretty much gone out the window in the times of Covid. The Covid Cut is actually a thing. We now understand what is truly important in terms of what we each need, and your content needs to reflect this switchover.
“The lasting change Covid-19 has brought is that many people finally understand that not all niches are made equal. Food, water, health, and safety are “essential” niches whose demands must be met no matter what. While travel and leisure activities are the first to go in times of global crisis. I think this crisis is going to be a wake-up call for many webmasters about the true evergreeness of their niches. And it’s going to have many changing their lanes, especially if the situation continues to get worse or gets prolonged till it really starts to hurt” – Nikola Roza.
It seems that appreciation for the simpler things has risen sharply since the pandemic started; who would have guessed until recently that fresh produce would be seen as a top priority or shopping at local stores has caused such a splash?
Even industries as widely varied as yoga classes, flower delivery services, and art studios now face serious competition from grocery deliveries, cooking supplies shops, and nature walks. Indeed, it’s funny how quickly we can adapt when push comes to shove, gracefully reprioritizing all of what we hold dear in life, no matter how difficult or packed with compromises that may be.
In any case, one thing is sure: our newfound appreciation of food, water, health, and safety will likely outlast this pandemic. How far those changes reverberate throughout our life is yet to be seen.
“Content marketing will no more be a negligible part of the marketing strategy. As consumer behavior shifts towards online shopping, businesses will have to put significant effort to get the limelight in online marketplaces. The competition will increase, and getting backlinks won’t be enough to stand out. More reader-centric content marketing is the key to achieving the goals after COVID-19 as competition will increase” – Damien Martin of ShuftiPro.
Authenticity is where it’s at these days. Be yourself, and your customers will follow.
“Authentically position yourself as the authority in your niche by being real and vulnerable. Get on camera without the extra fluff, tech, or big spend. Your phone is now your production studio and broadcast network. Go where the people are – ONLINE. Use your cell phone, get on video, share your story, and share how you can help people now!” – Sharon Haver of Focus on Style.
With everyone getting online, you have to shine more than ever. Your content is going to help you do that. There is a better time to skimp on cheap, keyword-stuffed content.
“As more people work from home, more people are online and spending more time-consuming content. Nominally, this is a good thing. The problem is, though, it’s getting increasingly easy to get lost in the noise. The last effect of COVID on content marketing is creativity will be required in developing impactful content, not just something nice to ponder” – Kris Hughes of Gembah.
The world is so full of negativity right now, no one wants to hear it. If your brand can bring a smile to the face of your customers, you may just come out on top of the other brands.
Who could have predicted that Covid-19 would also be a force for good? Suddenly, it seemed as if kindness and empathy had become trendier than the latest cosmopolitan cocktail: popping up more and beholden to no geographical boundaries. And why not?
In uncertain times, extending kindness and understanding will likely become the norm. Scrolling through social media channels, one could almost hear a collective sigh of relief as generous gestures multiplied.
Through acts of charity, humor and mutual support, we saw what can happen when compassion carries us closer together – no matter the physical distance. Covid-19 has taught us that global pandemics are not just about panic buying toilet rolls; it’s about being kind to each other too. Who knows? Maybe years from now, we will look back at this pandemic with fondness as when people worldwide finally woke up to how much better life can be when empathy means something.
After all: Covid or not, if showing generosity is no longer a trendy concept…well, then we ought to worry!
“Covid-19 has created the need for more content based around people/companies/communities helping each other, providing more value to help readers and a human focus on kindness and empathy-based marketing. I think this trend for kindness and empathy and truly helping people will continue to be a trend in content marketing moving forward. The human element in content marketing was missing before” – Lysa Miller of 3 Media Web.
The Last Word on Changed Content Marketing
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