Content marketing trends have seen a massive shift post-pandemic. With about 82% of marketers using content marketing in 2021, up 70% from last year, it can get increasingly hard to stay on top of your game for those of you who go by “we’ve always done it this way”.
As a content marketer, it is important to know what your competitors are focussing on and what’s changing in the industry. Keeping up with these changes and strategizing around these trends can effectively put you at the top of the leaderboard.
The hottest TV show, the most happening place to eat at or those pair of pants that shot to popularity thanks to that someone “who did their dance on TikTok and went viral with it” in a matter of seconds; it can get exhausting to keep up with fast-paced trends and find something that’s reliable enough to implement. Especially if we’re talking about B2B marketing.
We get it. That’s why we’ve done the legwork for you.
Content marketing trends for 2022 are officially on our radar and we’d like you to cash in on it!
But before we get to it, here are a couple of current statistics you should know.
According to the 12th Annual Content Marketing Survey conducted by Content Marketing Institute,
- 62% of the respondents said that they had a documented content marketing strategy
- 71% characterized their content marketing as sophisticated/mature
- 54% had two or more full-time employees dedicated to content marketing
- 57% had outsourced content marketing activities
- 83% used content creation/calendaring/collaboration/workflow tools
- 60% used a content management system (CMS)
- 90% measured content performance
- 64% characterized the team’s ability to demonstrate ROI for content marketing initiatives as excellent/very good
- 32% spent 50% or more of total marketing budget on content marketing
- 75% expected 2022 content marketing budget to increase over 2021
- 92% said that they value creativity and craft in content creation and production
- 81% agreed that they provided their customers with a consistent experience across their journey
- 78% used content marketing to build loyalty with existing customers/clients
- 64% used it to nurture subscribers/audiences/leads
- 57% used it to generate sales/revenue
And now that you know how leading companies are or intend to use content marketing, let’s start looking into the trends.
Content marketing trends for 2022
1. Empathy driven content
With a large number of companies turning to content marketing post-pandemic, the consumers are overwhelmed with content. This factual content can seem monotonous and inconsequential especially when consumed in large doses.
To prevent their content from being perceived as just another passing piece, marketers have started pushing empathy-driven content that resonates with their readers.
Brand empathy is a level of understanding that is different from simply identifying needs or serving up useful information. It is a process that involves developing a deeper connection with your audience. This level of understanding allows you to connect with them on an emotional level and to create a shared journey.
2. Quality content
Customers and search engines both want to see consistent, high-quality content. It helps your users have a positive experience, influences consumers buying decisions, improves engagement, establishes your credibility, dare I go on?
The year 2021 saw a lot of people pushing in a lot of content. Most of which was irrelevant. Content marketers have now realized that while quantity matters, quality matters even more.
74% of marketers attribute the success of their content marketing to quality content. That’s a sizable amount of marketers trying to tell you that quality content works.
Check this to see if the kind of content you’re producing makes the cut.
3. Outsourcing content marketing services
Year after year, it is seen that a higher percentage of large, more successful businesses outsourced content marketing services whereas the least successful had a smaller outsourcing rate. Though outsourcing trends did see a fall during the onset of the pandemic, operations are now back on track and in full swing.
Outsourcing can help you focus on the core competencies of your business and provide you with an improved service quality since a dedicated team with the required expertise handles it. Reduction in internal operational costs and saving time are also driving factors for companies to start outsourcing content marketing services.
4. Voice search
The popularity of Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri is undeniable. Voice-based search already has a whopping $2 billion worth of sales and will only climb in 2022.
Almost every home today has a device that enables voice search because of the convenience of hands-free operations over typed searches. The most significant difference is that the queries are no longer in a conversational manner. Instead, they’re in the form of a question.
For example, people earlier searched for “best content marketing agencies”. This has now changed to, “Hey Google, what are some of the best content marketing agencies?”
Therefore content marketers are expected to include voice search into their campaigns and adapt their SEO strategies with FAQ content. People are going to have too many questions and if the right keywords are utilized, FAQ content can be extremely lucrative.
5. Video content marketing
Not everyone comprehends content through text. That’s why we have graphs, infographics, gifs, videos, etc.
Whether you’re a digital marketer, content creator or brand owner, it is important that you capitalize on this developing medium.
Also read: Tips to create viral videos from Radarr
6. Virtual events and webinars
The immense popularity of webinars in the last two years is solely credited to the pandemic. It is one of the best performing content assets of 2021 with 61% of content marketers making use of it as part of their content marketing strategy.
As you can see, the number of businesses making use of zoom as a video conferencing tool has seen a sharp increase and is projected to be on the rise even for the year 2022.
People are more likely to purchase from someone they believe in. This is the same logic that people apply when they shop from the same two websites all the time.
Humans are naturally averse to risk and tend to avoid new experiences with people they don’t know about. Hence, attending a free webinar hosted by you, on the other hand, is safe and when you provide them with the information they require and address their issues, their trust in you will grow. Making use of humor and allowing yourself to ad-lib at times can help you humanize your business and help your attendees have an engaging experience with you.
Podcasts have taken the center stage and are here to stay. It is expected to continue its steady rise throughout 2022 with its listener base increasing by over 20 million. With all the feature enhancements on apps like Spotify, the growth of podcasts is expected to grow well beyond 2022.
With a correct podcasting strategy, they can be leveraged across multiple channels.
For example, an informational interview with the leaders of a particular industry can be published as a blog with the transcript and released as a video. Thus capitalizing on it in two different ways.
And just like webinars, they add a human touch to the content marketing landscape, unlike textual content that may be seen as bland, emotionless and machine-like.
The use of podcasts is also gaining momentum because they are relatively easy to produce. It doesn’t require the use of expensive equipment or audio-engineering expertise to come up with a decent episode.
8. Growing investments and changing budgets
Consumer habits change with time and so should your budgeting process.
It is projected that a large number of businesses are hoping to increase their content marketing budget for the year 2022. These predictions are in line with the overall growth trends observed for the years 2019, 2020 and 2021.
The top content marketing-related area of investment for 2022 is expected to be video, podcast and webinars. This makes sense, as the business has shifted online, and marketers look for ways to tell compelling stories, these are the three assets that give results that closely match in-person events.
With the COVID restrictions gradually being lifted, an increase in In-person events is also a possibility. Hence a part of the content marketing budget is allocated to hybrid events involving both digital and live events.
In a digital-first reality like ours, it is vital that you join the winning team. Gear up to lead your company into what promises to be a spectacularly successful year for content marketers.
Ready to take on 2022? Get in touch with us at Contensify to discover the true potential of content marketing.