Shake things up to get ahead in 2016

There’s a new terminology in Marketing town…it’s called ‘Content Shock’. Content shock is the name being given to the overwhelming amount of Marketing content that we are bombarded with each day, filling our inboxes and news feeds. No doubt your inbox has already been bursting with ‘What’s New in 2016?’ emails, and what did you do with them? We’re hazarding a guess that you might have hit delete…are we right?

As marketers, this is exactly what we want to avoid, but our jobs are becoming even harder as the amount of content being produced rises exponentially each day. How can you avoid your emails being deleted and ensure that readers see value in your content? Read on for our three tips:

– Forget the ‘disruption’ technique
In recent years, marketing has been delivered using the disruption technique, with pop ups on landing pages, boom box ads, flash banners and streams of emails, all of which are jarring to the senses and in most cases just plain annoying. Your prospective customers are human too so chances are if you find it annoying, your customers will too. This aggressive style of marketing is irritating and likely to lose potential prospects, as most of the time, the content is not relevant to the reader. Like a child pestering its parent hoping they’ll give in, this marketing style is a little desperate and sadly in vain. Web surfers cottoned on to this technique and we saw a wave of ad blocking software appear. AOL’s commercial director Stuart Flint recently said, “We can’t just keep shoehorning ads into real estate that people don’t want and make them switch off. It’s not that people don’t like advertising, they just don’t like disruption’. In our view this feeling is also true with content and not just advertising. In order to remain in your prospects good books this year, think about how you present your content, the channels you use to promote it and be smart about how frequently you ask them to pay attention to what you have to say. Clever content marketing should feel helpful, relevant and make the reader feel that they are reading something of value.

– Go ‘hyperlocal’ with your content
You’ll be starting to notice a theme here. Relevancy. When creating marketing campaigns, marketers tend to assume that the same piece of content will work nationally and maybe even internationally. Simply tweaking a few words here and there doesn’t really cut it, we need to be thinking hyperlocal. Failure to understand the differences in what content our prospects like to consume means we are in danger of becoming ignorant and missing opportunities to properly engage with new prospects. This technique might not be for everyone, but if you have a business with national scope and the potential for attracting subset audiences, then it’s worth a try. Many major brands are now committing big marketing spend to creating content that appeals at a hyperlocal level, having found inspiration from the success that sites like BuzzFeed have seen with their, “22 things you’ll only know if you come from X’ articles. If you’re a beverage brand for example, why not put up a recipe for a cocktail using your product and give it a local twist…who wouldn’t want a Mayfair Mojito or a Dagenham Daiquiri?

– PR isn’t dead, despite what you might have heard
Many marketers will tell you that Public Relations as an industry, is undergoing an identity crisis right now. With free tools such as Social Media available to all and mainstream media in a decline, who needs to write press releases anymore? The honest answer is you do. Writing press releases and good press releases at that, is actually a skill in its own right. They are not stories or blogs – press releases are purely functional announcements to get your key message or newsworthy update across to the people that matter most…your prospective customers and journalists who might just tell your story to all their readers. If a journalist gets wind of your new product or service launch and wants to know more, you need to be able to tell them in a nutshell what it’s all about. Journalists wait for no-one, well maybe the exceptionally famous, but they won’t wait for you. Having a press release to hand with a great image is certainly a step in the right direction to getting your story in front of the right people. PR and Marketing pro’s can also help you in other ways, not just with their writing skills. One of our ‘jobs’ if you like is networking. We meet people all the time and building relationships is one of our skills. This means that we are ideally placed to make introductions and place your business into conversations with key media connections. Even in the digital age people still ‘buy’ people and it doesn’t hurt to have well connected people on your side.

So there you have it, three sensible yet powerful ways to get ahead with your PR and Marketing in 2016. You can thank us later…or simply share this post and spread the love…