Why Content Gets Cut Through

Content marketing is fast becoming one of the most reliable methods to connect with audiences.

In fact, the 2021 “What Buyers Want from Content Marketing” Contently report shows that content marketing is gaining prominence. Why? Due to its ability to connect with audiences, particularly in a world where people now feel deprived of real life experiences.

Content marketing has “become an investment that brands can rely on.” The US report shows a jump in demand and predicted growth in spend amongst marketers this year.

The findings indicate a new found openness to engage with branded content. However, it also puts the spotlight on distrust around perceived faux content collaborations.

“When asked to rank groups based on trustworthiness, friends and family topped the list, while influencers and politicians were at the bottom.”

The findings also show:

– 80% of people, read, watched or listened to a piece of content from a brand last year
– 74% of respondents are more likely to buy something from a brand after reading a story about the positive impact they’re having on the world
– Video (30%) is the format people enjoy the most, followed by visual content such as GIFs and photography and copy (25%)
– 58% of those surveyed said they were likely to take a free course created by a brand
– Only 26% of respondents trust influencer marketing

What type of content is resonating? Social impact storytelling continues to dominate with brands such as Patagonia mastering the genre. While newsletters, with their function as an owned audience asset, continue to deliver for brands. However, brands must also consider
“publishing content that’s exclusive to newsletter subscribers and personalise and segment email content based on audience data.”

In terms of format, the report concludes that despite the efforts of dominant social channels to push video in 2015, even allegedly going so far as inflating views, balance is best.

“Unless you have a very narrow audience, it makes sense to invest in a balanced content output. Good stories are amplified through multiple content formats however, ultimately brands need to connect by adding value to people’s lives and by earning their trust. Content marketing is a powerful way to do this.”