2020 is nearly over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t follow these latest trends in content marketing. Here’s how to reset your sights on a strong finish to the year.
1. Mobile-friendly Emails and Landing Page Designs
We live in a fast-paced world, and even amidst the pandemic, everyone always on the go. Consumers view content on their smart devices. When it comes to email marketing and landing page design, having a mobile-friendly layout that fits the smart device screen is key to increasing open and click rates. When consumers have trouble viewing an email or landing page on a smart device or it is hard to navigate due to not properly fitting the screen, they lose interest and do not engage with the email or landing page.
2. Dark Mode Messaging
People use their mobile devices all times of day. Browsing in “dark mode” turns your mobile screen to dark, improving battery life and helping to ease eye strain. By designing emails that work with the dark mode feature, consumers are able to view marketing messages at ease without straining their eyes and may have a better chance of viewing the email rather than if it were brightly colored.
3. Minimalist Layouts
When it comes to the design layout for emails and landing pages in 2020, keeping the design simple and clean is the way to go. Consumers’ attention spans are getting shorter. By creating minimalist emails, it will give the consumer a better chance to read the email and capture the information without losing interest. A clutterless email is also beneficial to those with hearing or visual disabilities. The same goes for landing pages. By only portraying the needed information and focusing on the main message of the landing page, consumers will not be distracted by other unnecessary content. Keeping the landing page simple will be easier on the consumer’s eye and will also help the page load faster.
4. Combining Social Media Strategies
We’ve all heard the phrase “kill two birds with one stone.” Including your social badges in your emails is a great way to attract consumers to your social channels. Using a brand hashtag on Instagram, displaying the hashtag, and providing the link to the hashtag gallery on your emails also allows consumers to view the gallery and see who is enjoying the product or service your business has to offer.
Video content — from animated videos to live-streamed videos — is on the rise. Many consumers would rather watch a video than read an article. Even including the word “video” in your email title can increase your open rate by 20%. Consider having a short video be the focal point of your landing pages. There are also endless opportunities on social media channels to use video content, from live streaming on Facebook to Instagram stories with videos.
6. Heavy Contrast and Customer Illustration
When it comes to designing landing pages, the latest trends are having heavy contrast with colors and customizing the page to describe what you do as a business. Having colors that contrast and leaving enough whitespace allows the customer to not get too distracted from the main reason they are on that page. Also, customizing your landing page to fit your brand style, whether it be a certain font or an image that represents your business, is something that customers will remember.
7. Interactive Features
The main purpose of landing pages is to have a consumer convert into a lead. Offering interactive components on landing pages not only helps engage the consumer but also helps you collect the needed information about that consumer. Creating polls, quizzes, or surveys are some interactive ways to gain engagement and have consumers spend a good amount of time on the landing page.
8. Instagram Carousel Posts
Although Instagram carousel posts are nothing new in 2020, they are becoming more popular. Instagram carousel posts allow for more than one picture to be posted in a single post, offering a wider variety of displayed pictures. Consumers can slide through the pictures as if it were a slideshow.
9. Customer Feedback, Reviews, and Ratings
Nothing says “I trust a business or brand” more than positive customer feedback, reviews, or ratings. Providing feedback, reviews, and ratings in your email marketing may spark an interest in consumers who were unsure about your business. Also, giving consumers the option to offer feedback in an email is a great way for them to feel like their opinion is valued and that you, as a business, want to hear from your customers.
10. Move from Phone to SMS in Customer Service
As texting, or short message service (SMS), becomes a popular way to communicate rather than talking on the phone, the same goes for customer service. Consumers now have a shorter attention span and aren’t willing to wait on the phone listening to classical elevator music while waiting for a customer support rep to talk with them. Studies have shown that 52% of consumers prefer texting a customer service rep. By having texting or SMS as an option to solve any customer service-related issues, it makes it a smooth and timeless process, leaving the customer happy overall.
11. Asking for Customer Reviews
Just as mentioned above, customer reviews are a great way to build trust and let consumers know how others value your business. Sending out a simple text asking for a customer's feedback will likely result in the customer replying because they can respond right at their fingertips and don’t have to go to a website in order to leave feedback.
12. Social Proof on Landing Pages
When creating a landing page, it is important to remember to not include any navigation links that can distract the consumer away from the landing page. Instead, you can include social proof that shows what others have to say about your business, which, in the end, creates ease for the consumer. Some ways to include social proof on your landing pages would be to provide feedback from your clients or customers or show the logos of businesses you work with.
13. Social Media Influencers
Having an influencer represent your brand isn’t the latest trend, but it is a trend that seems to be picking up more and more in 2020, especially through social media. Many businesses have nano or micro-influencers, who have a small but meaningful social following and help spread awareness and promote a business's products or services by sharing their experiences with the brand. Consumers have their favorite nano and micro-influencers who they follow and trust their opinions about a business rather than seeing an advertisement, making it more likely that they’ll support your business.
Content Marketing Trends
14. Texting About Promotions, Sales, and Offers
Not only can texting be used to communicate with a customer service rep, but it is also a great way to notify consumers about promos, sales, and special offers. Consumers can receive an abundance of emails daily and not even go through them because it may be too overwhelming. Sending a simple text message about a sale or special offer with a link can grab the consumer’s attention easy and fast and allow the consumer to go back into their messages to find the text message instead of digging through emails.
15. Receive Order Updates
Some businesses have hopped on this trend already, but others still use email to communicate with consumers about order updates. Sending out a text with order updates is a fast way to notify the customer that their order is out for delivery, delayed, or the estimated arrival day and time.
Since the launch of Snapchat stories in 2013, many social media channels saw how much buzz this created with consumers and wanted to join in. Now, Instagram and Facebook offer the option to post stories on your feed, with Instagram being one of the most popular social media apps for stories. Businesses can use stories to engage and have consumers interact through videos, polls, and Q-and-As. Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat also include different icons, images, and stickers to add personalization to your stories.
17. Encourage User-generated Content
Through social media, businesses can promote user-generated content to help with engagement and provide social proof for others to see. Your business can encourage customers to post a picture on social media that includes a specific hashtag to showcase your products or services. The hashtag allows other customers or even potential customers to see how others are liking your product or service. This helps build a connection between your business and your customers and shows your customers that they are important to you.
18. Voice Search
Instead of taking the time to search for something on the internet by typing it in the search box, many people are using voice search on their phone. When consumers use voice search, they mainly ask a question or say, “Show me _____.” Having questions or longtail keywords as titles will help bring up your content when someone searches for it through voice search.
Many consumers prefer to listen or watch videos nowadays than read something. Podcasts are very convenient for businesses because consumers can listen to them while on the go and they can be about anything. For example, businesses can create podcasts discussing the latest occurrences happening in their industry. Podcasts are also something you can save and upload to your website or social media channels and people can go back and listen to them on their own time.
As mentioned above, consumers have a shorter attention span nowadays, especially when it comes to talking with customer support. Besides being able to communicate with a customer service rep through texting, businesses are also turning to chatbots that are available 24/7 and can be easily used. Consumers would rather interact with a chatbot than talk on the phone, making it a win-win situation for you and the customer.
At Elite, we work with businesses in a variety of industries — from health care and retail to tourism and software — to create content that attracts, engages, and converts potential customers. We also optimize content for organic search and use customer research and data to identify the right content and the right channel to reach target audiences.
Whether you need a full-service marketing agency partner or a strategic partner, we’ve got you covered. Schedule your free 30-minute assessment with Elite today!