7 Content Marketing Trends That Will Define 2020

Digital Marketing
Ronita Mohan
2/27/2020

The content marketing trends of 2020 are unlike those of past years due to significant changes in technology and the introduction of new software.

Content marketing in 2020 will see massive technological changes. Marketers will need to prepare for them to have a successful year.

This article outlines the biggest content marketing and creation trends we will see this year, and how marketers can adapt to them.

7 Content Marketing Trends that will Define 2020

  • Augmented visual content
  • Emphasis on user journeys
  • Optimizing for voice search
  • New social media apps
  • Live streaming
  • Conversations in marketing
  • Content personalization

1. Augmented Visual Content

The importance of visuals in content marketing cannot be discounted—they add so much value to your content, and to your users.

In 2020, the visuals you use in your marketing have to be even more dynamic than before—especially because of the rise of interactive media.

Social media platforms such as Twitter allow companies to use moving images, or gifs, in their posts.

Google Tweet Augmented Images

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Animations and GIFs are another type of content that is becoming popular. Creating unique and branded GIFs will help you stay on top of one of the biggest graphic design trends of 2020.

This new trend ties into the popularity of augmented reality—social platforms like Snapchat and Instagram have made AR popular among younger users, and brands have to follow suit.

Create your own branded AR filters for these platforms to develop the kind of engaging content that is guaranteed to convert in 2020.

Content can no longer be static—the more dynamic and interactive you can make your content, the better your conversions will be. 

2. Emphasis on User Journeys

Content marketing has long been seen as an end goal in and of itself. But now that we are in 2020, that mindset will have to change.

As many marketers will have noted over the past couple of years—content marketing does not exist in a bubble.

In fact, all the separate marketing techniques work in concert with each other to encourage a user to become a loyal customer and ambassador for the brand.

For marketers, it is going to be far more important now to follow a customer’s journey—from the time they first become aware of your brand, right through to when they make their purchases.

Customer journey map

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Each step in a customer’s journey needs to be analyzed factored into your strategy. This ensures that your brand is top of mind for customers.

Understanding the user journey will help you create targeted content that can be disseminated at critical points for the greatest impact on the prospective customer.

3. Optimizing for Voice

Voice-activated devices such as Amazon Echo and Google Home have become popular with people around the world. With the rise of voice assistants like these, we are seeing a change in the way people search online.

Voice search is one of the top marketing trends expected in 2020. It’s time to optimize your content to reach the increasing number of voice searchers. 

People now rely on their smart devices to do the search for them. Users simply ask a question and the device does the rest of the work.

This has impacted the keywords marketers use. You need to start optimizing both written and visual content to answer specific questions.

One-word keywords or short key phrases, for example, are no longer going to be enough. Tailor your content for question-oriented phrases instead.

You will also need to do the same for visuals. A number of smart devices are now being equipped with screens, so visual content will appear on these systems in the near future.

Smart devices are still in their nascent stage but are being developed as we speak—so be ready to tackle those changes.

4. New Social Media Apps

2019 saw the unexpected rise of TikTok among younger users, which is of particular interest to brands who are marketing to that demographic.

Of course, TikTok is still a very new platform, and creating a strategy for it is difficult. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to capitalize on TikTok’s success to improve your bottom line.

One of the best ways to use new platforms like TikTok is to team up with influencers—as long as social media remains popular, so will influencer marketing.

Brands can also create their own content for their TikTok channel or advertise their services, but you have to have a very good idea of your audience and their needs.

And it is best not to focus all your efforts on TikTok—if there’s one thing we can learn from the platform’s meteoric rise is that social media can throw a curveball at any time.

Marketers need to be aware of the latest trends in the social media arena, and how it impacts their customer segmentation, so they can find ways to use these apps for their brand’s success. 

5. Live Streaming

We have heard a lot about video marketing over the past few years, but live streaming is one video marketing trend that we’ll see a lot of in 2020.

Live video is dynamic and engaging, qualities that break through the static images and text of a person’s social media feed.

Marketers should prioritize their live streaming strategy in 2020 instead of spending their resources to produce and post videos.
This change in tactic has other advantages for brands—live video isn’t nearly as expensive or difficult to produce as pre-recorded videos.

Live video helps you connect with your audience more directly—instead of being a faceless organization, live streaming puts a very real face to the brand. 

A number of platforms such as TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitch now offer live streaming options. This gives you have plenty of options for creating content.  

6. Instant Messaging Conversations in Marketing

We don’t often think of conversations beyond their practical use in everyday life. However, as we step into 2020, conversations are going to become a key aspect of marketing.

How can brands have conversations with their customers? Website chatbots and messenger chatbots, which have become more widely used in the past year than ever before.

Many current chatbots are powered by sophisticated artificial intelligence programs, which make their responses more human than the chatbots of the past.

Machine learning software is also being used to enhance the way chatbots absorb information and learn from them—which increases the number of responses they can generate.

For marketers, the growth in chatbot technology is a surefire way to boost your content strategy. 

Grocery chain Whole Foods, for example, incorporates useful content into its chatbot, “Conversable.”

Whole Foods Chatbot

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People using the chatbot can select specific options to direct them to useful information on the Whole Foods website, such as recipes and types of cuisine.

Instead of having to create tailored answers to feed into chatbots, the sophisticated technology of today can create content for you, and keep your audience engaged at all times.

Conversations are a necessary part of 2020 content marketing. They keep your brand connected to your audience and improve the customer experience.

7. Content Personalization

Speaking of the personal touch, content itself needs to get a more personal makeover. One of the top e-commerce trends and marketing trends of 2020 is personalization.

You need to look at personalization as a way to create content that is meaningful to your audience, and makes them feel like the content has been created with only them in mind.

The way marketers can achieve this is by studying the data they receive via social media reports, email marketing reports, and website visits.

You can use this data to create user personas. User personas are general characteristics of your users that help you anticipate their needs. 
 
Important elements of a user persona include purchasing motivations, trusted brands, personality traits, and demographic information.

And then you can define which 2-3 core groups of people are the most likely to become loyal customers and ambassadors for your brand.

Using data to create personalized content will improve social reach and email deliverability.

With this knowledge, you will be able to create targeted and tailored content that will be of high value to your customers.

The Changing Nature of Content Marketing Trends

Content marketing trends are constantly changing, which can be a challenge for digital marketers. Adaptation, however, has always been the key to marketing success.

We have outlined seven trends that are going to define your strategy in 2020. To recap, they are

  • Creating dynamic and interactive visual content
  • Designing content to exploit the user journey
  • Optimizing content for smart devices
  • Adapting to new social media apps
  • Investing in live streaming
  • Incorporating sophisticated marketing chatbots
  • Personalizing content for better conversions

Begin tailoring your content strategy for the above trends and you will have a successful 2020.