5 Expert Tips to Refine Your Content Marketing Strategy for 2018

Michael Brenner on Jan 8, 2018 in Content Marketing

Interactive video. Unforgettable live events. Micro-influencers who can pack a trust-building punch.

Are you wondering how you are going to weave all the essential elements of a stellar content marketing strategy for 2018 together to blow your metric marketing goals out of the water and make your customers forget your competition even exists?

With more martech, more boundaries pushed, and more expectations to fulfill, creating successful strategies will probably get, to put it nicely, complicated.

To help stay on the path to forward-thinking, strategic content, here are the tips and insights from today’s greatest minds in content to help you refine your strategy for 2018.

(If you need more in-depth help, contact me today for a free consultation).

Make Your Social Content Better

Want to get more out of your social media content? CEO of Social Media Examiner, Michael Stelzner, interviewed social expert Ian Cleary to discuss the top tools marketers should be using to make their social media marketing more effective in the future.

Here are some of the best resources you can use to refine your social content:

  • Feedly to condense and organize all the blogs and websites you keep up with, such as influencers, industry experts and news. At a glance, you can skim or read to top articles and curate the most relevant content to share with your followers.
  • Lumen5 to quickly and easily create video content out of the text and images in your blog posts. Then, share on your social sites to drive more interest back to your original post.
  • Tack is great if you do live events, or if your brand has a strong Instagram following. It boosts your social proof by making it easy to search for other people’s posts related to your brand, such as your recent event, contests and product launches. It also manages the process of reaching out to see if you can repost their brand advocate content.

Make Your Influencer Content Better

As one of the most potentially potent components of your overall strategy, companies are setting aside tens of thousands a year for their influencer marketing budgets. If you want to get more ‘influence’ for every dollar spent, Lee Odden, marketing veteran and CEO of TopRank Marketing, suggests using micro influencers over those who have mega followings and mass appeal.

Those who have an intimate connection with a smaller group of followers may have a more sustainable and consistent influence over a segment of your company’s market. Odden even recommends going more micro than micro. Thinking outside the box to employees, customers and others, you may be able to develop the most productive influencer relationships.

“Go after a quantity of quality and make sure influencer/brand values align. Go after different niche influencers (community, customer, employees, prospective customers). Not just the big fish in the industry. I think that truth will set free many successful influencer marketing campaigns.”

Make Your Video Content Better

By focusing on the basics. With video marketing, it’s true that fools rush in. With video becoming one of the most essential platforms for engaging with customers, a lot of companies have erred on the side of uncaution, putting energy into creating funny, entertaining videos to capture attention. And maybe even go viral.

Video marketing expert and Executive Creative Director at Supercool Creative, David Murdico warns against this strategy. He suggests focusing on crafting a video campaign that can generate results. One with a clear strategy, measurable goals and a great call to action at the end, not necessarily a great punchline.

“I don’t list ‘developing the creative’ as the first priority because unless you know what you’re trying to achieve with video, who you are trying to reach and what you want to happen when you reach them, you can’t predictively come up with creative that will achieve the goals.”

Make Your Content Team Better

Neil Patel, entrepreneur, author and one of the most recognized minds in marketing, warns of the expanding roles that will be necessary in 2018 and beyond. ‘Content’ has always referred to a broad range of possible offerings, from the traditional text-based blog to gamification, videos and virtual reality. But, the shift we’re seeing is that going forward, a spectrum of content will be the norm, not the exception.

Which means:

“Your company needs to create a broader strategy, with a more diverse group of talent and skills, to meet the demands of your audience.”

Audio and video production and editing, graphic design, campaign management, analytics – more skills equal more potential for dynamism in your content marketing strategy.

Make Your Event Content Better

According to Colleen Bisconti, VP of Global Events for IBM, there’s one word you need to hone in on for event marketing in 2018. Transformation.

“I strongly believe that as event marketers, we need to constantly focus on how we think about, plan and execute events because this industry is moving so fast that those who don’t have a constant focus on transformation are going to be left behind.”

She suggests digging deep into event data, learning:

  • What products or services are people using?
  • What past events have they attended?
  • Do they engage with your brand on social media or in other ways?

And then using this information to create better events, with a focus on an immersive experience.

Technology has changed event marketing by empowering marketers with a wealth of information from data capture, analytics and artificial intelligence. In the future, marketers need to use these insights about what attendees want, to develop customer-focused events – true breakthrough experiences – rather than continuing to create events where the agenda is to tell customers what a brand wants them to hear.

In 2018 and on, in-person events, along with the rest of your content marketing strategy, needs to be about what content the customer is after. What will enhance their lives?

Here’s the thing. There is never one, unified answer. What content the customer values is always evolving. From changing platforms and interfaces (hello Siri) to greater customer sophistication over time, let alone changing market shifts, the data is always going to give us new information. We have to keep up with it to create the best content marketing strategy – at each point in time. And then keeping evolving the strategy.

Michael Brenner
Michael Brenner
Michael Brenner is a globally-recognized keynote speaker, author of The Content Formula and the CEO of Marketing Insider Group. He has worked in leadership positions in sales and marketing for global brands like SAP and Nielsen, as well as for thriving startups. Today, Michael shares his passion on leadership and marketing strategies that deliver customer value and business impact. He is recognized by the Huffington Post as a Top Business Keynote Speaker and a top CMO influencer by Forbes. Please follow him on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook and Subscribe here for regular updates.
Showing 4 comments
  • Andrea Torti

    I have been using both Feedly and Lumen5 for a while, and I couldn’t agree more – they’re both extremely useful tools and real time-savers!

  • Karl Layton

    Thank you for putting all of this wonderful data together for us Michael! It is a great summation of what I am sure were great conversations.

    It seems that one thing that seems to be consistent with all of these is the customer definitions. With a better understanding of who your audience and a more diverse set of tools to reach your audience, you will have better success. This is great information for non-marketers as well as full-time marketers. At the end of the day, we are trying to show people that we have a product or service that can give them a solution to a problem.

    If we can master all of these key points there is no doubt that we will all have excellent content marketing results for ourselves as well as our clients.

    • Michael Brenner

      Yes Karl, the main point of modern marketing is 100% shifting the perspective from marketing as promotion to marketing as an extension of the product or service. The customer is at the center of everything, especially marketing. And if done well, marketing also solves customer problems and helps them to achieve success.