Today’s consumer is interacting with content more and more each day. According to data assembled by HubSpot, 85% of adults consume content on multiple devices at the same time.
This stat isn’t that surprising if you think about it. Channels like Instagram and Snapchat allow people to get their content fix through creative visual or video assets, which are designed to be mobile friendly and consumable within seconds.
Google describes this type of engagement as micro-moments, which are characterized as “real-time” and “intent driven.” People frequently check their phones for fresh content (up to 150 times per day according to Facebook Insights) and do so sporadically throughout their busy days when there are brief moments to spare.
The Pros and the Cons of Micro-Moments
As with many things in life, there’s both a good side and a bad side to this type of behavior.
The positive for marketers is that there are many opportunities to engage with prospective customers. The negative for marketers is that you need to create enough content that allows people to connect with your brand at any time of the day.
To help you begin strategizing for how to create many micro-moments, here are 3 strategic ways to think about scaling content creation.
1. Meet the Demands of Today’s Digital Market
Every marketer’s goal is to connect with their audience at every possible moment. However, unless you have an endless stream of content already in the queue, fulfilling that goal is a very time demanding and financial challenge.
More Content Please
One factor that is not up for debate is this: marketers are expected to produce more content every year, but the budgets set aside for creative development are remaining flat.
Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs collaborate every year on the annual Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends report. They analyze what trends are forming from both B2B and B2C perspectives.
The numbers in this year’s reports tell the story. Over 70% of business leaders in both B2B and B2C industries expect their marketers to produce more content in 2017 compared to 2016. But those expectations come up against very real challenges.
- Are marketing teams large enough to produce all that content?
- How fast can content go from ideation out to market?
- What systems are in place to scale content creation and distribution?
- Is there enough capital in the budget to pay for these demands?
In order to meet their company’s goals, marketers need real solutions that address each of their pain points to streamline workflow and produce highly effective content. But that’s not all.
2. Localize and Personalize Your Content
There have been plenty of studies and panels analyzing the importance of personalized content in today’s digital marketplace. Dale Carnegie, who runs the Dale Carnegie Course for Leadership Training, wrote a book entitled “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” A quote from his book summarizes why personalized communication is so critical to make an impact.
While the quote primarily speaks to one on one dialogue between people, it also speaks to best practices for effective content marketing.
Today’s generation has a built in filter to detect when brands are less than credible or trustworthy. If one sales-like message is advertised to thousands of people in a database, the recipients on the other end of those communication channels are smart enough to detect those kinds of tactics.
On the other hand, personalized content custom-made for your target audience is far more likely to make an impact. Brands build trust, authority, and credibility with their customers by creating content that speaks directly to their concerns as one person speaks supportively to another. These are far more effective tactics than advertising as large corporations to potential customers.
The #ShareACoke Model
One example of a truly exceptional personalized content strategy was Coca Cola’s #ShareACoke campaign. Remember all the bottles of Coca-Cola that were branded with people’s names? Those were the fruits of the labor behind this campaign.
According to AMA, Coke had been in a 10-year sales decline prior to the launch of the #ShareACoke campaign in the summer of 2014. However, the company reconnected with loyal customers and made advocates out of occasional consumers thanks to the personalized bottles.
People were intrigued by the marketing campaign and purchased bottles for themselves as well as their friends. They shared pictures of the bottles with the #ShareACoke hashtag, which reportedly was mentioned in 250,000 tweets at the height of the campaign.
Sales figures showed a 30% growth in 20 oz Coca-Cola purchases within the first week of the campaign. By the time the initial launch wrapped up at the end of summer 2014, Coca-Cola reported year over year sales growth in nearly all trackable markets.
You might not be in a position like Coca-Cola with vast resources to launch a massive grassroots campaign, but there are many ways you can scale your own content creation strategy with limited resources.
3. Streamline Your Workflow with Technology
One of the best ways to scale content creation in 2017 is with technology. Marketers are increasingly relying on software as a service (SaaS) marketplaces to optimize workflows, and collaborate with teammates who may be stationed at different corners of the globe.
A brand new way to scale content creation
Today’s digital landscape and demands for fast, high-quality content require brands to tweak creative models. Traditionally the creative workflow remained strictly internal as the workflow from ideation to creation to delivery, and finally, measurement remained within the team.
But today’s marketer uses technology to distribute that workflow outwards into an ecosystem of creativity.
Content as a service (CaaS) solutions are the newest additions to the content marketing technological landscape. CaaS are similar to SaaS solutions but are designed to help marketers adapt to a creative ecosystem and enhance content creation.
The key benefit of CaaS solutions is that they allow brands that need content to seamlessly connect with freelance contributors who can provide that content. There are over 53 million freelancers doing on-demand work in the US today and 50% of the American workforce, in some capacity, is expected to be involved in freelance work by 2020.
Freelance workers can acquire and produce fresh content assets to keep up with the demands of today’s consumers. For many years, brands have resisted extending their creative operations into the freelance market, but are rethinking those decisions as pressure mounts to produce higher volumes of content. CaaS solutions close the gap between brand marketers and creative contributors by productizing freelance services to help marketers scale content creation.
How It Works
CaaS platforms connect marketers to freelancers stationed in all corners of the globe. This allows brands to acquire fresh assets in untapped markets, fulfilling the need for highly targeted, localized content.
For example, a freelancer can take photos or produce videos using localized environments within the content that your in-house team is unable to reach due to geographic, budgetary, or logistics hurdles. These assets are then uploaded into the CaaS platform where marketers can easily review the collateral, and use the content for whatever marketing campaign is required.
This was one of the problems facing Quiznos and their need for greater amounts of authentic content. CaaS solutions helped Quiznos solve that problem and produce content at scale.
In addition to providing collateral to support large branded campaigns, these assets can be broadcast across Instagram, Snapchat, and other social channels. Followers will see the creative environments within the content, and come to recognize your brand as a globally entrenched label to follow.
Ecosystem creative models, powered by technology, help marketers significantly reduce the cost of content creation - a major asset when operating on fixed budgets. This strategy also allows brands to entrench themselves in markets they may otherwise be unable to enter and produce very localized content. Perhaps most importantly, these models help teams scale creative production to provide audiences with fresh, authentic content on an ongoing basis.
Many companies are searching for these very solutions to become more efficient with how they create and utilize content. Read our ebook on How to Scale Content Creation for Social and Digital Channels for great insights on how technology helps your brand scale creativity and reduce costs.