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Content marketing is still king for many businesses. But how a digital agency approaches their content strategy is likely going to undergo some changes in 2017. From SEO concerns to video streaming, we’ve got a lot on our plate. Here are four events we’re predicting for content marketing in 2017.

Email Newsletters Evolve

It’s far from being a new strategy, but email newsletter marketing continues to be one of the best ways to reach customers. In 2017, email marketing will be defined by its evolving versatility. Businesses are using email marketing to entertain and build brand loyalty with whimsical GIFs and cool video campaigns, to offer time-sensitive discounts and drive sales, to serialized gripping brand stories with drip campaigns, and more.

Marketers also love email because they own it. Your leads and customers opt in for targeting. There’s no middleman Facebook or Twitter to change the playing field with new features or algorithmic tweaks or charge for access to fans. We also love that we can keep our brands top of mind with regular messaging.

Native Advertising Matures

In 2017, native advertising (or sponsored content) is expected to come into its own. Google is cracking down on intrusive popups, more and more people are enabling ad blockers, and aggressive push ads are falling out of favor with web users. Many think SEO-friendly native ads are the answer, giving target audiences helpful information within site content.

Native ads free you from the grip of ad blockers¬†but be aware they don’t free you from consumer protection laws. A few big brands have gotten in trouble over the past few years using native advertising without identifying the content as promotional.

Emotive Storytelling Reigns  

Researchers delving into how consumers make decisions are finding that emotions and feelings are a key factor. Persuasion becomes important to brands and marketers because there’s so much noise to get through and grab attention. Content marketing that can tell a compelling narrative or story that plays off natural emotions will win the day.

Even “boring” products or services have interesting people behind creating them and interesting people using them. Some brands are focusing on this angle and seeing results. Other brands are going beyond facts and figures and gaining traction by citing data implications and real-world consequences for their target audience.

Live Streaming Video Delights

Marketers really started to pay attention to video a few years ago, but at the time, the focus was on planned, scripted, and edited content. It was high quality and it did move the needle for many. However, the future seems headed towards unscripted and authentic video.

Live video is already successfully being used by a number of personalities to sell a wide variety of products and services. Facebook Live, YouTube Live, and Twitter’s Periscope platform are all letting people give planned and unplanned stump speeches, show live events, answer direct questions from viewers, and share breaking updates with fans. Brand audiences love this kind of access and connectedness and it shows.

Your Marketing in 2017

If our predictions for what’s hot in 2017 are correct, we’ve got a lot of new tools and techniques that will help improve clients’ bottom line. All the same, the fundamentals haven’t changed much: email is still a crucial connector, stories matter, quality content matters, and authenticity still matters. The difference is we’ve just got some new methods to apply these lessons.

Is your content marketing ready for 2017? Call us at 313-338-9515 or email to learn how our full-service digital agency can help get you ready.