Content never goes out of style when it comes to attracting and converting customers. When it’s done right, content marketing is an effective and cost-efficient (or even free) way to target the audience you want with the information they need.
In 2023, content marketing is evolving (in new and wonderful ways that build on the content and SEO trends in 2022). It’s not just about looking at the formats you should use to engage your audience (long and short-form) or the emergence of TikTok as an effective marketing platform, but an acceleration of marketers using AI to increase productivity and combat the dreaded writer’s block – especially when you’re a busy content marketer writing a lot of copy.
So let’s look at the key content marketing trends for 2023 to see what you would be watching out for or experimenting with to see if it boosts performance. Read on to find out more about these key trends:
Short-form immersive mobile-first video
An explosion in the creator economy
Artificial Intelligence and marketing collaboration
Long-form and live video content
1. Short-form immersive video
For years, video has been hailed as the key content type for brands to gain traction across channels – especially on social media. More than half of marketers say video is the most valuable content type with 25 percent saying that live video is effective in reaching social media goals, as noted in the 2023 Content Benchmarks Report.
As a result, all social platforms prioritize video content and their algorithms, including platforms that may be traditionally text-based like LinkedIn according to Alison Battisby, Social Media Consultant & Founder of Avocado Social.
“2022 was the year of entertaining full-screen immersive mobile-first video, so you have to think vertical if you’re creating video in 2023. We’re going to see more experimentation from brands that will lean into this trend and experiment with this format not just organically but also in paid advertising.”
Battisby believes that savvy brands will test their creative organically first and then promote their best-performing content. This is a trend that works well on TikTok so if you’re noticing videos blowing up in terms of views and likes, why not think about boosting it?
Here are some key tips for creating great short-form content for mobile:
Keep it punchy. Successful videos tend to be between 15 and 30 seconds long
Include a surprise twist at the end of your video like a reveal or transformation
Add interesting captions like ‘wait for what’s next’ to keep people watching
Experiment with creating your own sounds or remixing tracks to increase the possibility of going viral (check out these tips from top TikTok creators)
Browse what’s trending on platforms such as hashtags, topics or music
Gymshark short content
Gymshark short content
Knowledge graph optimization
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2. An explosion in the creator economy
We mentioned in our top digital marketing trends for 2023 blog that the creator economy is set to grow and change. This explosion will create intense competition between brands to attract and retain the best creators across platforms.
The reason? Brands want to fill their content gaps and they want to tie into the latest trends. But they do not always have the knowledge or capacity to act quickly enough or do it in a way that best drives engagement and conversions.
“Contact reviews from content creators are trusted, and often engagement is higher on creator profiles than for brand profiles. So, really consider how you can utilize creators as part of your brand’s marketing. Could you offer some products for review? Could you invite some to an event? Or could you work together to collaborate on a piece of content, like a trending sound?” says Battisby.
Luckily social media networks are making it easier for brands to find quality and relevant creators. Instagram recently launched a creator portfolio where creators can share their unique stories and position themselves for partnerships on their profiles.
YouTube announced a 45 percent revenue split on YouTube shorts according to MIT Technology Review. So Battisby sees YouTube monetizing its new vertical video offering to attract creators to make unique shorts content.
3. Artificial Intelligence and marketing collaboration
Artificial intelligence (AI) and copywriting have been linked for many years. But in 2023 AI will play a bigger role than ever in content creation as the demand from consumers for personalization intensifies.
There are a lot of new AI solutions coming onto the market. For example, UberSuggest uses AI to assist with blog posts, Copy.ai helps create social media posts and blogs, while Chat GPT is trained to interact conversationally and can be integrated with Zapier to schedule blogs or social media content and create drawings or videos. These new technologies require marketers to learn how to talk to them and create prompts for the best content.
“We’re seeing people leverage AI for e-mail, copywriting, subject lines in an e-mail, or even your ad copy,” says Matt Santos, Vice President of Products and Strategy at Neil Patel Brands.
But it’s not only about creating copy, Matt believes it can help content marketers in the writing process especially when there’s so much content to be created. “I think the way we can leverage this tool is by just kickstarting the creative juices. It’s perfect to help us break through writer’s block because as soon as we start to see words on a page, our mind starts racing. That’s essentially what AI is useful for right now, today.”
In 2023, there are going to be some breakthroughs due to more investment in software and machine learning. There are going to be improvements in natural language processing and other factors and down the line, we’ll see AI that produces great content that we only have to quality assure or edit and just spend a couple of minutes on.
Despite the improvements, Santos believes that “it’s going to be rare to find an AI that can write an entire blog post from start to finish that’s perfect. We’re still several years away from that. In 2023, AI is going to be used to help generate some of those first couple of pieces or help you finish a piece, but it’s still integral for a human there.”
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4. Long-form content and live video
Many marketers rely on and prefer short-term content to attract and engage. But ignoring longer-form content would be a mistake.
Not only is long-form content like blogs, ebooks, or webinars great for SEO, but it’s also effective in building backlinks – with posts over 3,000 words getting 77 percent more backlinks according to a Backlinko study.
But what about long-form videos? According to a senior Google executive, it’s believed that 40 percent of young people now use TikTok and Instagram as a way to search for places to go out for lunch rather than using a Google Maps search. So, creating videos that showcase places can help to engage and drive people to your website or brand.
Battisby also sees companies having huge success with long-form videos on LinkedIn. “We’ve seen LinkedIn Live over recent years and as a tool it’s just getting better and better. It’s becoming easier and more accessible to go live on LinkedIn and host professional webinars and conversations within the platform.”
There’s also audio content like podcasts. This format has seen a rise in popularity in recent years with Podnews reporting U.S. podcast revenue growing to nearly $1.5 billion in 2021 with 38 percent of monthly listeners in the U.S., up from just 14 percent in a decade before in 2012.
Monthly podcast listeners in the U.S
Monthly podcast listeners in the U.S
The rise in voice search and ownership of smart devices like Alexa and Homey and the social app Clubhouse (based on voice) will only increase the number of people listening to audio content. Brands should tap into the trend to see if their content resonates on those channels.
2023 Content Marketing Trends Round-Up
Content is a medium that’s valuable to any business – big or small. The key is to understand your audience and use all the tools available to create content that’s relevant and useful to your audience.
Use these key trends for 2023 to generate content ideas, strategize and optimize your content marketing so you can reach the right people on the right channels. Experiment, be creative, and be brave in 2023 to supercharge your content marketing.