Everyday it seems as if there is a new social media platform or app popping up on the market. As overwhelming as this may seem, it’s important to stay tapped into new innovations in order to discover whether or not they can be leveraged as marketing tools for your business. In 2013, the power of content distribution increased because of fragmentation, search engine optimization shifted its focus from keywords, and content marketing became king. If you want your business to stay ahead of the digital marketing game, then you should consider employing these strategies in the New Year.
Start using video as a content marketing tool. YouTube will continue to grow in 2014 and currently reaches more people between the ages of 18-34 than any other cable network. If you haven’t considered adding video to your online marketing strategy then now is the time to dump the shyness and jump in front of a camera. Micro-videos — those that span between 6 and 30 seconds — and YouTube provide opportunities for your business to get creative in redistributing content. If you’re afraid to get your feet completely wet, start by producing short and creative explanatory videos on topics related to your industry.
Use images over words to improve engagement. This year video-sharing and image-sharing tools like Vine and Instagram took on the young adult market with full steam. Several “hip” brands latched onto these platforms to find cool ways of marketing their products with intriguing content. As these platforms continue to gain traction, visual content will become all the more critical to attract the eyes of potential customers among the masses. This means now is the time to figure out which new (or old) platforms fit into your company’s brand and will allow you to share more visual content. Consider tapping into Slidehsare, Tumblr, or Path. Even if you are using the standard social media networks (like Facebook and Twitter), adding images to your content can increase engagement by over 67%.
Optimize your web content for mobile. If you are unable to view your website on your smartphone then it may be time for a redesign. According to a recent study by BIA/Kelsey, mobile advertising revenues are expected to jump from $7.03 billion to more than $20 billion by 2017. Additionally, Fast Company discovered that 63% of smartphone owners keep their phones on them for all but an hour of their working day. Mobile is the present and the future. Make sure your content is reachable and shareable by building a responsive website for your business.
Use Google+ for engagement and business opportunities. Google executives announced in October that the Google Plus platform now has more than 300 million active users. The level of social activity on the Plus platform may still be a question up for grabs, however extended functionality on some of the company’s services provides new opportunities for your business to leverage. You can monetize hangouts for training classes or take advantage of Google’s new algorithm called Hummingbird to pull keywords from conversational search. In addition, sharing your content on the platform can help increase your search engine rankings. The freshness of Google Plus also presents an opportunity to share content without the confusing limitations of advertising algorithms that may keep your products or services unseen by fans and followers. Whether or not Google+ rises as a social network, it is safe to say that it will definitely become a key engagement tool for businesses.