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5 B2B content marketing trends to watch in 2016

As a brand, you're constantly looking for the best ways to advertise and market your company. From SEO to ROI, every strategy your brand chooses to market itself to other businesses with is critical to your success. These strategies include content marketing, digital marketing, mobile advertising, social media and even enhanced Web design. While last year might have been successful, how can you make sure 2016 sees even more engagement from your audience? We've picked five content marketing trends for 2016 to help your business reach new heights.

1. Social media and publishing will collide
Twitter is considering changing the character limit of posts from 140 characters to nearly 10,000 in an effort to keep up with content marketing trends, according to Entrepreneur magazine (1). What does this mean for marketers in general? It means an emphasis on long-form content and the opportunity to transition from punchy statements to more thought-based pieces. In a 2015 report by the Content Marketing Institute, up to 88 percent of B2B businesses used digital content marketing, but only 30 percent of organizations said they're effective at it (2). How can the longer character limit change this? It will give B2B operations the opportunity to share editorial pieces, lengthy ideas and the personality of their brands more effectively.

2. Emphasis on quality over quantity
Content marketing will no longer be about how much product is out on the market. Rather, 2016 will focus on less content with each piece having a higher ROI for the reader. According to an infographic compiled by Express Writers, B2B companies gain 67 percent more leads per month when they create custom, high-quality content. What does this mean for B2B marketers and content strategists? It means that other businesses are more likely to work with you if you showcase custom content based on your brand.

3. Your consumer will get smarter
B2B organizations, take note: Your target audience is getting smarter. According to Forbes, buyers are becoming more aware of the information that's out there about a brand or service (3). So how can B2B marketers gain leverage over their increasingly smarter consumers? Google has introduced a new tool called micromoments to conduct research on your consumers and what they search for on mobile devices. Did they just search where the nearest grocery store was? Google tracks that. Did they just look up that hot new restaurant on the west side of town? Google followed that, too. If you want to catch the rabbit, you have to follow its tracks. These Google micromoments are expected to help B2B content marketers for years to come.

4. Mobile growth trends will expand
The desktop unit grows increasingly obsolete. As time passes, trends toward mobile devices will continue to grow for content marketers, meaning that mobile website deigns must be more responsive and engaging. This includes adding embedded videos and creating beautiful, easy-to-navigate mobile Web pages. Exploring mobile options isn't optional, however. Your B2B consumers expect these tactics from brands they choose to interact with. Coming into the new year, make sure that your mobile marketing strategy is cohesive and strong.

5. Video will continue to grow
According to a 2015 white paper from Cisco, video content marketing is expected to account for 69 percent of all consumer Internet traffic by 2017 (4). While long-form and editorial content is still highly valued by B2B content marketers, content strategies must adapt to the times by incorporating more videos into campaigns. What does this mean for B2B brands today? Hire a video editing team, as your brand will need it to succeed in the next few years.

(1). #Twitter10K: Possibility of 10,000 Character Limit Creates Big Buzz
(2). B2B Content Marketing – 2016 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends – North America
(3). 10 Content Marketing Trends To Help You Budget For 2016
(4). Cisco Visual Networking Index: Forecast and Methodology, 2014-2019 White Paper

Sheila Kloefkorn

With more than 25 years of hands on marketing strategy and operations experience, Sheila Kloefkorn is dedicated to developing marketing strategies and plans that help clients succeed. Some of the world's largest brands have depended on Sheila for marketing programs that delivered tangible and substantial results. Specialties: B2B marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, sales strategy, marketing strategy, competitive marketing strategy, social media, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), mobile marketing, email marketing, website design, marketing plans.