How To Fall Back In Love With Content Marketing

Creating stand-out content is crucial if you want to maximize your brand’s online presence and the power of your digital touchpoints in 2022. From providing value and encouraging positive brand sentiment to improving organic search visibility and domain authority, the potential benefits of creating great content are limitless.

However, we know that the prospect of creating high-value content can be intimidating, so we’ve created a quick run-down of some of 2022’s top content trends and our tips to help you (hopefully) fall back in love with content creation this year.

 

It’s (Still) All About Video 

It’s probably not news to anyone that video is set to continue to dominate across all social platforms in 2022. From Instagram Reels and TikToks, to Youtube Shorts, video should definitely be on your radar. In the last few years, and especially since TikTok’s boom in 2020, short-form video has proven to be the most engaging content you can produce for your brand. 

Reels on Instagram are highly favoured by Instagram’s ever-ambiguous algorithm, meaning they are much more likely to gain traction and reach than any feed posts and stories you create. If you want new eyes on your page, you really can’t ignore video. How to embrace it? Have a scroll on your TikTok FYP and Instagram Reels tab, and look out for trends and sounds that you can make relevant to your product or offering. Being timely and relatable is key with short-form video. 

 

Get Your Audience Involved 

We all know that engagement rate should always be your number one KPI when accessing content performance and an effective way to increase engagement with your brand is to add in interactive elements to your content. Your target audience will be more likely to be compelled by content that allows them to interact and have their voice heard. Think about it, we all consume so much content in a day, sometimes all the images and text blur into one. 

Some ways you can implement this include creating an engaging quiz on your site or utilising the interactivity features on Instagram stories to get your audience talking. 

 

LinkedIn Is Cool Now

LinkedIn is not boring anymore. Every quarter, the platform reports huge increases in monthly users and engagement on the platform. It’s time to stop overlooking LinkedIn as stuffy or only relevant to ‘the suits’.

If you’re a b2b or service-focused business, don’t underestimate the significance and potential power of your teams’ individual LinkedIn profiles. Your people should be your best ambassadors, and their presence on Linkedin can help communicate your company culture and also help build and nurture relationships with current and prospective clients. Because of the ‘human’ nature of the profile, LinkedIn is a great platform for value-driven storytelling, which will continue to be extremely valuable this year. 

If you need some inspiration, our Head of Agency, Paff, nails their Linkedin personal content. We’re probably biased but the reach and engagement on their posts speak for themselves! 

 

Leverage User-Generated Content 

User-generated content, whether organic or produced through collaboration (e.g. influencers), should be an integral part of your content strategy. Firstly, utilising UGC allows you to streamline and cut down on the resources involved in the content creation process. Secondly, and most importantly, UGC is very well received by audiences. It can boost your credibility and extend the potential reach of your organic content considerably.

So many brands and businesses have lots of untapped UGC waiting to be used… If you feel like you need some more fresh content, there are also lots of ways you can encourage UGC. For example, you could host a giveaway where followers have to post content to enter or start to share messaging encouraging customers to tag you in their content and use branded hashtags. 

 

Don’t Give Into the Overwhelm 

Our biggest piece of advice when planning your content creation strategy is to find where your target audience spends the most time and nail your strategy for this platform first. Do you get the best engagement on Instagram reels? Amazing, get filming. Is your email open rate way above industry average? Great, get typing.

As much as it’s important to be agile and reactive, spreading your brand too thin often means that you’re compromising on value and ultimately, content performance. Always start with your strongest platform and don’t be afraid to focus most of your energy there until it’s running like clockwork.

 

If you need a little extra help staying up to date with all things social, make sure you give us a follow on social or send us an email at shannon@pilotfishmedia.com!

eCommerce Trends To Watch Out For In 2022

I don’t think I need to tell anyone that eCommerce is a part of everyday life for every consumer group as we come to the end of 2021. The inevitable takeover has only been accelerated by Covid-19 and associated lockdowns, with consumers purchasing online more than ever. In fact, 70% of Britons say buying online is now their preferred shopping method.

 

Looking ahead to 2022, here are 5 key trends I think will shape the world of eCommerce.

 

Predicted eCommerce trends for 2022:

  • Using social media as a sales channel
  • Increased use of voice search
  • Sustainability
  • Returns will become an even more prominent customer touchpoint
  • Subscriptions & Loyalty programmes

 

Using social media as a sales channel 

Social media is an incredibly powerful marketing tool for eCommerce brands to utilise. It not only allows them to send direct traffic to their website, but it also gives them the opportunity to create and foster a community which they can nurture to encourage returning custom. Whether it’s through paid social ads, organic content or influencer marketing, social media is the most important marketing tool currently available to drive sales online. 

Unsurprisingly, as social media grows, so too will the ability to sell to customers on their platforms. We’ve actually already written an entire blog about social commerce which you can read here to get ahead of the trend for 2022.

 

Increased use of voice search

The global increase of voice search has been well documented in recent times. The majority of new devices now come with voice functionality, from your new smart watch to the TV remote. 

Not only are these devices becoming more popular, but they are actually being integrated more into consumers’ day to day lives: “65% of 25-49-year-olds speak to their voice-enabled devices at least once per day.” It’s important to note, however, that it isn’t just the 25-49 year old category that is using this functionality. Both those older and younger are using these devices.

Voice is expected to be a $40 billion channel in 2022, although it only accounts for $2 billion currently. This section of the market is still relatively small and a very viable channel going forward into 2022 and further, which provides an interesting opportunity for D2C businesses to get ahead of the competition by adding focus to voice search in 2022. 

 

Sustainability

Sustainability is no longer a buzzword reserved for eco-friendly businesses. It’s the reality that modern consumers expect now and will expect in the future. Simply put, if your business isn’t looking to improve on sustainability, but your main competitor is, then you will lose customers. 

Customers are increasingly buying from purpose-driven brands and brands that align with their values, and this isn’t just a trend for 2022. In order to connect with these eco-aware consumers, you need to ensure your business values align with your target audience’s.

An excellent example of a successful sustainable business would be Pangaia. They are by their own admission “a materials science company on a mission to save our environment”, but from any consumer’s perspective, they’re a clothing brand who sell quality recycled/organic clothes. 

Shopify states that within 1 year, they were able to generate $75m in revenue while staying profitable, grow their staff size by 12x and increase their Instagram following by 14x. These statistics clearly showcase that when sustainability is at the forefront of a business, and the consumer aligns with this mission, growth and success are inevitable. 

 

Returns will become an even more prominent customer touchpoint

We already know that how businesses deal with eCommerce returns can create a competitive advantage. It’s a significant part of the customer experience which can be easily overlooked due to not being particularly glamorous. However, with increased online sales comes increased returns. 

When done correctly, the returns process can massively improve customer return rates. In fact, 92% of customers said they will buy again if the returns process is easy. However, on the flip side, a quarter of shoppers attribute a delay in processing their return to a negative customer experience.

This simply cannot be overlooked, and it needs to be a priority touchpoint for eCommerce brands in 2022. If you have the ability to improve future purchase decisions and increase a customer’s lifetime value, why would you overlook it?

 

Subscriptions and loyalty programmes

Subscriptions are a great way to increase customer retention rates, which is ultimately at the forefront of any eCommerce brands’ thoughts.

This can be a great tradeoff. Customers get the products they want, regularly and for less. They don’t have to spend time purchasing the product/service regularly or making decisions. Businesses keep the customers they want, for longer and for less cost. It can help with business forecasting and planning for the future – something every business would love to be able to do accurately. However, your business needs to be thinking long term and needs to have the technology in place to implement this. 

As eCommerce continues to grow in 2022, you’ll need to find new ways to differentiate yourself from the competition. Subscription and loyalty services should be in your conversations going forward if they haven’t been already. 

 

 

If you’re looking for help moving your eCommerce business forward in 2022, please get in touch with me at marius@pilotfishmedia.com!

How To Kickstart Your Email Marketing

Here are our top tips and tricks for writing emails people actually want to read. 

 

With the new year nearly here, there’s no better time to get your email marketing in hand. If you’re staring at a blank screen and wondering where to start – after all, with inboxes fit to burst and plenty of junk, who wants more pointless emails? – here are some tips on how to get started!

 

Be inspired 

How often do you receive an email and think about bookmarking it? We receive so many emails a day, and while the ones we like might tempt a spontaneous purchase, it’s unlikely that many of us sit back and review the crème de la crème of our inbox. 

To write really good emails, you’ll need really good emails – the website, that is. This treasure trove of email marketing is the best place to start your strategising, whether you’ve got an eye for design or a love of great copy. Scroll, search and save your favourites! 

Things to consider? Email copy is often short and sweet; it should complement a design that’s stylish, readable and not too busy. Always make sure that your emails are optimised for mobile, and be direct with subject lines so that people can’t help but click. Personally, I usually can’t resist an email from brands like Glossier, Smol and Bloom & Wild, who know exactly when to send a well-timed discount.

 

Go with the flow 

Part of the beauty of email marketing is the personalisation you can achieve through segmenting. Not only does it make your customer feel a bit special, but the right email at the right time communicates essential information, improving the customer journey and keeping your client in the loop. After all, if you’re expecting a parcel, you want to know when it’s on the way and if you’ll be in to collect it! 

By creating email flows, you can make each and every customer feel like a VIP. From abandoned cart flows to post-purchase updates, letting customers know they’re at the top of your priorities is such an effective way to build brand loyalty (and reassure them that their product will reach them unharmed).

Services like Klaviyo and Mailchimp are an easy way to get started in the world of email flows. All you need to do is write up your email, make it look pretty and choose who it’s going to. Much of the process is automated, meaning your customers will get your email as and when they need it.

 

Choose messaging that matters

Why should someone take the time to read your email? If there’s nothing new to see, they won’t want to hear it – so make your messaging count!

There are some obvious things you’ll want to tell your audience about: new product launches, what you’re doing for upcoming sales events and of course, precious discount codes. However, email is a direct way to communicate with consumers, so don’t stop there. 

Your email marketing is a great place to show off what sort of brand you are. From sensitivity around big events in the calendar, such as opt-out options for events like Mother’s Day or Father’s Day, to anticipating user needs (Christmas coming up? Here’s a gift guide that’ll help you finally figure out what to get your granny), email marketing is a more direct way of showing off what your brand is all about.

 

Which brands are sending your favourite emails – and could you do better? Get in touch with me at freya@pilotfishmedia.com to see how our team could help you upgrade your email marketing.