How to Navigate Digital Disruption with Content Marketing

Content marketing strategies illustration with megaphone

There’s no question that digital marketing disruption is here. To help you navigate, the LRW Group collaborated on a five-part series that tackles the biggest challenges you’ll face during the coming months and years. The third installment took a look at the new age of ad targeting, and how you can capitalize on Contextual Advertising, specifically to reach customers in a post-cookie world. The fourth installation focuses on how content marketing can be an effective strategy to engage customers in a post-cookie world.

Marketers have had to adapt to rapid changes in the 21st century, with digital marketing hurdles appearing in quick succession. The latest obstacle? The gold mine of third-party data will soon disappear, the result of new consumer privacy legislation. Understandably, many marketers are nervous about coveted data disappearing faster than a video Snap.

Without access to the third-party data you previously relied on, it’s essential to find other ways to engage consumers to keep your brand top of mind. Developing a world-class content marketing strategy is one of the best ways to do that. 

SURVIVAL TACTIC: Create a Killer Content Marketing Strategy

The many benefits of an effective content marketing strategy make for a long list. Content that truly resonates with your audience can help improve conversion rates, boost SEO, build brand awareness and trust — and it’s relatively cost-effective. And in the face of the looming cookie apocalypse — when you’ll no longer be able to follow users around the internet — many marketers and communications pros are investing in this strategy as a way to continue connecting and engaging target audiences. 

Here are some top tips from across the LRW Group on how to build a winning communications and content marketing strategy.

#1: Generate interesting, relevant topics that will actually resonate

The internet is filled with dull, repetitive content and consumers are bombarded every time they glance at their devices — don’t waste your time (and theirs) by creating more of the same. Smart content should be grounded by ideas that actually matter or stand-out to your target audiences. 

The best way to zero in on the right topics is to conduct some research. Our go-to tool is omnibus surveys. They’re a fast, cost-effective way to uncover the insights you need — whether local or global. Don’t leave your strategy up to guesswork. 

#2: Incorporate dynamic visual content that stops the scroll

It can be hard to stand out in a sea of text by … creating more text. More dynamic forms of content — such as motion graphics and short-form animated videos and GIFs — are excellent ways to tell stories, convey complex information in compelling ways, and capture consumers’ attention quickly. 

In fact, with 82% of all web traffic projected to be video by 2022, you could say that visual media is the single most dominant way people communicated today. So from social to email marketing, visual content can be used to boost engagement for any campaign.

#3. Embrace a multi-channel, media-agnostic approach

Content is a great way to create and maintain brand awareness across channels, both earned and owned. By adapting your campaign messaging and assets for different media — social, blogs, video, whatever works for your brand — you can reach the right audiences widely, without having to break the bank or max out your resources. 

In fact, for most brands, a fully cross-channel approach is no longer an option. Generation Z, which became the most populous generation last year, engages with up to five screens at a time, watching 68 videos a day on average. What’s more, 8 in 10 say social media influences their shopping habits. Long story short? They live across multiple platforms, and your brand should too.

Curious what visual communication can do for you?

Content Marketing Strategy Case Studies

How are brands engaging their audiences in a post-cookie world? Here are just a few content marketing strategy success stories. 

Boosting social media engagement for Pemco

Insurance company Pemco came to Killer Visual Strategies looking for help creating a campaign that proved they “get it.” They wanted to develop value-add content that would help build and strengthen their relationships with policyholders. 

Killer partnered with Pemco on a series of evergreen motion graphics designed to educate and entertain via the company’s social channels. The result? The campaign led to a 12x increase in social media engagement. 

Global communications strategy for BlackRock

BlackRock, the world’s largest asset-management company, wanted to reinforce a global message of financial wellbeing. To help fuel action and content both internally and externally, Kelton Global and BlackRock collaborated on an international study that included 120 in-depth interviews and a 13-country survey and elicited 27,000 responses. 

Kelton designed the global study to produce thought-provoking talking points while accommodating for cultural nuance across the diverse international markets, and the results were fascinating. Deliverables included a global report, which was used to create an interactive microsite, an engaging internal presentation with a video featuring consumer voices, and other tools and data to illustrate varying perceptions of what financial wellbeing means for people across cultures.

A welcome campaign for the New York Philharmonic

Few New Yorkers could have missed the New York Philharmonic’s dynamic campaign announcing the appointment of Jaap Van Zweden as their new music director. The Karma Agency helped create a show-stopping content strategy that included eye-catching posters in the subways, billboards in the streets, and marketing materials such as this video that conveyed a sense of vitality and renewal: 

A colorful campaign for Skittles

When Skittles needed a fun way to celebrate the 30th anniversary of their “Taste the Rainbow” tagline, Kelton conducted a lighthearted PR survey of 2,000 Skittles fans to uncover what your favorite color says about you. 

As it turns out, those who prefer their candies red are more likely to identify as hopeless romantics, yellow is the least favorite Skittles color, and those who prefer orange respond fast to text messages. Who knew? The quirky survey netted coverage in People, the AP, and Today

To conclude: content marketing has the power to draw consumers of all kinds to your brand, which will be even more of a must in a post-cookie world. Ground your content marketing strategy in research, produce dynamic assets, and be smart about distribution, and you’ll be on track to achieve a major return on your investment. 

In the final installment of our “Navigating the Cookie Apocalypse” series, we’ll recap the most essential lessons from each post.

Erin McCoy

Author Erin McCoy

Erin McCoy is director of content marketing and public relations at Killer Visual Strategies. She earned her BA in Spanish with minors in French and Russian, and holds 2 master’s degrees from the University of Washington: an MFA in creative writing and an MA in Hispanic literature. She has won nearly 2 dozen awards in photojournalism, and has dedicated those skills to boosting Killer’s brand recognition and thought leadership in visual communication. Since Erin took on her marketing/PR role, Killer has been named a member of the Inc. 5000 for 4 years in a row; has been featured in such publications as Inc., Forbes, Mashable, and the Huffington Post; and has been invited to present at such conferences as SXSW and SMX Advanced.

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