March 17, 2014

People Are Still Searching for Content, Just Not How You Think

In many ways, content marketing was born out of shifting consumer behaviors and demands. In fact, many would go so far to say that content has become one of, if not the biggest, influences on consumer purchasing habits and behaviors. Just consider the fact that the average person digests at least 10 pieces of online information before making a purchasing decision, according to research from the world’s largest search engine, Google. That’s not to mention that blogs and other forms of customized content have been consistently and directly correlated to increased consumer spending.

The parallel between increased spending and customized content is very clear; however, the conversation has now shifted to where this content is living. Similar to how consumers dictate the kind of content marketers push out, they, too, dictate what kinds of devices they want their content to be optimized for. To this end, a brand new report from eMarketers shows that a "significant decline" of desktop advertising is revealing the very bright—and inevitable—future of mobile content marketing.

 The research, conducted by eMarketer anticipates a 9.4 percent decline—or $1.4 billion lost—in desktop advertising in 2014 alone. This downturn is expected to continue in the years to come, where it will reach an astounding 33.1 percent by 2018. Meanwhile, mobile search revenue rose an incredible 120.8 percent last year and is on track to grow another 82.3 percent in 2014 alone.

We all know that content marketing is here to stay.  Today, it’s about how to be first in the content marketing race. To get a leg up on the competition, companies have to make their content marketing strategy mobile-optimized. As the numbers above show, this is really a “no ifs, ands or buts” reality.

If you’re still unsure of why you need to make your content marketing strategy “device-ready,” consider that the majority of consumers (including yours) use their smart device specifically for consuming news. According to recent Pew (News - Alert) Research, the era of mobile digital technology has officially “crossed a new threshold.” People aren’t just playing Angry Birds and checking their bank accounts on their smartphones and tablets any longer. In fact, over 60 percent of people use their devices for news at least weekly. Furthermore, more than four in 10 mobile news consumers say that they get more news now, and nearly one-third say that they are adding news sources to their mobile news line-up.

Now that you know why you need to make mobile a part of your content marketing strategy, here are a couple of ways to begin doing so:

1.Consider writing in longer-form: According to Pew, 61 percent of smartphone news read by consumers includes longer stories, and 11 percent of consumers read long-form stories on a regular basis. You may be tempted to go shorter due to the smaller screen and the fact that the average consumer’s attention span has shortened, but give longer content a try for mobile purposes. Be sure to track engagement rates to measure its success and modify your approach as needed.

2.Get an app…now: Apps aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. According to a 2013 report from BI Intelligence, smartphone owners spend an average 127 minutes per day on mobile apps. That’s over two hours per day that consumers spend searching for new apps—or an two extra hours and limitless opportunities for your company’s content to be seen if it is being promoted on a mobile app.

Remember: people are still searching for and engaging with customized content, just not using traditional desktops anymore. If you haven’t jumped aboard the mobile content marketing ship, now’s your chance before it officially sails off into the sunset.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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