In a year as unpredictable as 2020, it is understandable that brands and content creators are wary of forecasting what is around the corner. However, at chlóedigital we have a roster of content creators on our membership who look to us for support and guidance, so we always look ahead. With the data and conversations we have had we have started to see some really interesting trends, tricks and strategies emerge. Which I would love to share with you in this post. Content creation is so powerful in the path to growth for your business – so please read through and test some of these tactics.
This year brands and content creators have had a chance to reflect on how they format their content, what is most effective and what drives most traffic and engagement. We have noticed and will see more content creators mimicking e-commerce platforms in the way they present recommended products. They have been investigating and are starting to use the “product you might like” format, like a retailer would. This might be sent to the readers inbox after the content creator has assessed their click behaviour. A really powerful tool! So as a brand you can utilise a bloggers email database and personalisation recommendations by asking to be included in this way. Remember a blogger with a database is highly valuable!
In addition to this it is becoming more and more popular for brands to use influencers in commercial editorial digital campaigns – instead of models or celebrities. As we know influencers have a highly valuable relationship with their audience, and so this connection is being utilised in more significant ways.
Influencers also have the ability and technology to create mini store fronts on their websites. Bloggers can actually now create this on their own sites, with much more agility than a large retailer can online. So as a brand you want to ask the question – will they re-merchandise their homepage for Easter? If so – can you be included?
Educational content will be fundamental. I told a number of my members over the years that building a function on their sites where they can offer masterclasses and educational tools would be hugely beneficial for them as a business but also for their audience. If they know what their audience want to learn from them, they can package this and offer this as a service on site. The pandemic has sped this process up and as brand partnerships subsided, this left space for content creators to really start thinking about building other services and revenue streams and connecting with their audience in a new, beneficial and purposeful way. This is an opportunity for relevant brands to work in partnership with content creators and also play around with this themselves.
This year has been scary, emotional and reflective to say the least. So many people have turned to their devices and as the news has been devastating and unhopeful, brands and content creators have often succeeded in delivering something up-lifting. This has also meant the consumer has questioned so much of what they are seeing from any channel. Therefore, when delivering content the emotional context is key to connect with an audience. The content has to have purpose and be genuine to the brand and creator. Gone are the days when an influencer showcasing a product without an emotional tie or honest narrative is acceptable. A good content creator will reveal their feelings, showcase products within a genuine context and also adopt social listening to better contextualise promotional content to their audience’s perspective. They will consider and learn from how their audience responds. When briefing a blogger with a brand partnership, really investigate their audience, how they engage and the realities of what is happening in their life. If your product fits with their narrative – it is a winning partnership.
User-Generated Content (UGC) is still massively undervalued and we are expecting to see a spotlight on UGC practices in 2020. We highly encourage our bloggers to work on content that their audience has been highly involved with – they can then edit this content in some way and repurpose it. This generates high engagement and also loyalty as the audience love to see their efforts credited.
Finally and importantly, content creators and brands will and should continue to push for better representation. Inclusivity will be key to being relevant with an audience today.
Personalisation is a given now and consumers are expecting content creators and brands to deliver this more often and consistently than ever before. Audience segmentation is important to create content tailored to specific personas but in a scalable way. Invest in this if you haven’t already.
We suggest your content team create more quizzes, bots and invest in artificial intelligence tools to help create personalised content. Great for data capture and also consumer experience and will deepen the relationship with the consumer leading to greater loyalty, retention and word of mouth.
I hope these trends and suggestions are helpful and will be useful in helping you evolve and adapt influencer partnerships and also for amplifying the effect of your own content as a brand.
Good luck for 2021 and the year ahead. If you are looking for more 2021 trends behind the content, check our Influencer Industry Predictions for 2021 talk where myself and my team share even more on how the pandemic has shifted digital behaviour impacting content creators, brands and digital businesses too.
We also recently conducted some research with our blogger members on performance and audience behaviours this year. The results in an infographic are pasted below.
Where you can find me
About your author
Chloé Watts is the Founder and CEO of chloédigital, the leading tech support membership for content creators. Chloé is a self-taught coder, who launched the business in 2014 when she saw a real need for content creators to have access to technical support and growth strategy, in order to not only maintain their websites but also accelerate and grow them as a business.
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