To proclaim for years that content is king, we probably had to crown a little too early a very young child. This is recognized by North American B2B decision makers when they are 91% to declare content marketing practice, but only 37% of them have a formalized strategy to manage these operations. A paradox in the form of awareness, for a new year that promises to be under the sign of (post) rationalization, the generalization of good practices and a considerable and exciting elevation of the level of editorial play in B2B. For 2018, here are the main trends to expect from content marketing.
1. Less is more
In 2018, publishing “standard” content is no longer an option. Editorial strategies revolve around stand-up content, exceptional content that stands out and allows brands to emerge from prospects and over-crowded B2B customers. These nuggets must be exclusive (no banalities, new, original, new … the exceptional too?), Valuable (inspire, save time or money), radically reliable and referenced . More greedy means, they are probably less numerous. It does not matter: the era of content shock is behind us, and at the time of the ecology of attention, brands whose content marketing knows how to do “less but better” will be the big winners.
2. Read to lead
When Barack Obama himself recognizes that it is not serious to run a country if you do not give an hour a day reading, we say that 2018 definitely marks the year of the end of a dogma: that of the tyranny of the court and snacking. B2B decision makers are in dire need of analytics and expertise that require long and exclusive attention. In 2018, the editorial media is more than ever that of the leaders, therefore the decision-makers.
3. Inside-out content
The best content, the ones that burn to read B2B customers, are often at the fingertips of brands. Each of them sits on a treasure: opinions, expertise, data, customer cases … An exceptional subject for content that is just as much. Exclusive, valuable and reliable: here stand out content at your fingertips. 2018 will be a year of “mining”, identification of these veins, acculturation teams to better value content marketing this infinite editorial wealth. Of course also working to make collaborators not only minors of these contents, but also their ambassadors on the networks, in a context where the growing mistrust of the institutional and anonymous speeches make all the more crucial the l incarnation of the relationship at the height of man.
4. Content at all stages of the funnel
The level of awareness content of B2B content marketing devices has increased considerably. But even for the most mature of them, the next steps (middle and bottom of the funnel) often remain the poor parents of the editorialization. If the inspirational and pedagogical topics are the most obvious, why not tell stories would it also be useful to convince and transform? Is 2018 the year of “nugget” customer cases that (convincingly) use video media in B2B?
5. TPE, SME, ETI also
As the Key Accounts target is often very well addressed, for many advertisers, the growth drivers for 2018 will be mid-size companies, SMEs or very small companies, especially in the regions. B2B content marketing to respond to two issues: proximity (“local” content, regionalized case studies, interviews, analyzes of the local industrial fabric, events, etc.) and affinity, by configuring the funnel in a more pragmatic and educational way, to offer content and tools for decrypting applied and fast major issues of the contemporary world.
Guest article written by: Priyanka Soni was born and raised in Delhi, India. She was an HR before she discovered her true calling in writing. It has been more than 4.5 years she is creating stories, blogs, and websites. Her master’s degree in English and Computer Applications has given her a broad base to understand the core of various topics. She now lives in Bengaluru City and currently associated with BlueNDecor. Her writing skills can be independently confirmed @Medium.com. Get in touch with her @LinkedIn or follower her on twitter.