Content creation is one of the hottest topics in 2020 among marketers. A lot of companies traditionally not in content creation or digital business are suddenly producing a lot of articles. The rationale is intuitive. They are trying their best to engage their potential users.
However, a lot of them stop at about 10 articles or drastically slow down in new contents publication. Failure in user engagement through the contents has demotivated them to continue doing so.
They did not realize that a good content strategy and lots of patience are needed to successfully engage users through their published contents.
Content Strategy in UX
Content strategy is one of the elements in UX. A good content strategy ensures that the users get the relevant and quality information they want. In addition, it is important to research on when and how to supply the information to the users.
Start planning your content strategy today with the latest trends below:
Content Strategy Trends You Can't Avoid in 2020
1. More videos, more visuals and more insightful texts
The internet’s next billion users want video and voice.
“Instead of typing searches and emails, a wave of newcomers— the next billion, the tech industry calls them—is avoiding text, using voice activation and communicating with images. They are a swath of the world’s less-educated, online for the first time thanks to low-end smartphones, cheap data plans and intuitive apps that let them navigate despite poor literacy.”, this story originally appeared in The Wall Street Journal in 2017 and the trend continues in 2020.
As the biggest tech companies are re-designing their products to adapt to this trend, marketers are putting in more effort to produce more videos and visual content.
Have these marketers abandon texts and stop writing articles? No! There are still a lot of users who value long articles with solid and quality content. You will be surprised that there are users willing to spend the time to read through content with insightful texts.
Be it video or text, it is important to target the correct users with the correct content.
2. A right balance among distribution channels
Consumer preferences change quickly, especially among younger generations. An annual survey conducted on 8000 teenagers in the United States shows that Snapchat is aggressively gaining ground among teens while Twitter and Facebook are in decline among teenagers.
Teenagers were asked, “what is your favorite social platform?”. The table below shows their response:
Some marketers are producing customized content for each of the channels to cater to different target groups.
For each of the target groups, ask what is the most relevant content and which is the most suitable channel. For example, if the content is intended to target professional audiences, Linkedin should be in consideration. Linkedin is especially useful for B2B businesses to woo engagement above what other distribution channels can provide.
On the contrary, if you want to target teens with your content, go to Instagram or Snapchat. Facebook may be losing grounds on teens lately but that doesn’t mean they don’t have teen users anymore. It still has a large base of active users with definitely some matching your personas. Don’t put all eggs in one basket!
3. Messaging Apps
Bloomberg’s Line Official Account
UXPA China’s Wechat Official Account
In some parts of Asia dominated by messaging apps Wechat and Line such as China, Japan, South Korea and Thailand, ‘official account’ (Chinese: ‘公众号’) is gaining popularity due to its convenience. An official account is just like any other contacts in Whatsapp, except that it is owned by a brand or a company.
When you want to contact your friends, you can send texts, pictures or videos to your friends. An official account behaves in the same way. Whenever the brand has any updates in contents, products, services or promotions, they will be able to send you a personal message just like your friends. Similarly, you may text the official account too if you have any queries regarding the brand.
On top of this, there is a chatbot to help you to find archived articles, search for discounts and promotions, make bookings, and pay for your purchases. There’s even a QR code to enable sharing among your friends.
All these conveniences have slowly encouraged the users to seek for contents through the messaging apps. If your brand doesn’t have a presence within the messaging apps, you risk not being able to reach your target users, especially in China.
The best example is demonstrated by the UXPA China (China’s chapter of UXPA). They publish articles almost daily through their Wechat official account. These articles are not even available through their website because it is not necessary, users in China would go to Wechat to read the articles.
Bloomberg also has an official account in Line targeting mostly users in Asia.
Schema.org (often called Schema) is a set of vocabularies founded by search engines including Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and Yandex to better structure metadata and help search engines to understand the content.
When Schema is set, Google will be able to capture the specific information within your content to feature in its search results. For example, when Schema for events is enabled, specific event details such as dates and venues will appear under search results.
Marketers are increasingly utilizing this technology to improve the visibility of their content and improve search engine performance to reach more audiences through organic traffics.
5. UX writing becoming popular to ensure consistency
If you still haven’t heard about UX writing, read about it in detail here.
Basically, UX writing ensures a consistent voice for your brand across all contents, from the introduction, instruction guides, articles to the voice user interface.
After adjusting your content strategy and direction,
- Decide a suitable metric to track the effectiveness of user engagement through your content.
- Suitable metrics include followers, views, clicks, conversions, and lead generations, etc.
- Monitor and review on a weekly basis.
Even with the best content strategy, you will need time and patience for your desired effect to take place.
If the result is still not satisfactory after a few months, fret not! You may conduct an in-depth user interview or focus group discussion with your users to determine what actually went wrong.