In 2020 you'll find that content marketing continues to be relevant no matter the size of your business, your industry, or who you serve. Whether you're a solopreneur operating a service-based business out of your bedroom or if you have a small and mighty team working virtually, having a content marketing plan is crucial.
Since there are frequently change in the rules, algorithms, and trends in content marketing, you want to keep an eye on the trends while remaining true to your business and your audience.
Here are 4 types of content marketing you can use for your small business in 2020. While you don't have to incorporate all of these in your content plan today or even this year, it's helpful to be aware of what's happening in the industry.
Start a Podcast
Podcasts are huge! According to Edison Research, monthly podcast listeners grew from 24% to 26%. The number of podcast listeners has tripled over the last decade. Based on these trends, it's expected that that number will continue to grow in 2020 and beyond. Also, 17% of marketers say they will be incorporating podcasting into their business within the next 12 months, according to HubSpot.
With the growth in podcast popularity, you might want to consider adding a podcast as a method to speak to your audience.
Keep in mind that you can run your podcast any way you want. For example, Myleik Teele's podcast, MyTaughtYou, was very casual in 2019 and often times recorded at the spur of the moment with episodes as short as 18 minutes. No fancy opening and music needed, but the value she provided still shined through.
Rachel Rodger's podcast, Million Dollar Badass (which will be going by a new name in the second season), was very branded with a fancy opening with music, and episodes often ran longer than an hour. Still, the value she provided kept me listening.
So, when creating a podcast, focus on providing amazing content to your audience. That's why they're listening. There's no need to get caught up on the length of your opening or podcast artwork. Just put on a great show.
Another value of podcasting is that you can easily repurpose your content. For example, Jereshia Hawk's podcast, JereshiaSaid, is often composed of Facebook live videos. By the way, I was a guest on episode 40. You can also turn a podcast into a blog post by transcribing the audio.
If you want to podcast in 2020, your options are endless.
Storytelling has already shown its popularity in content, and that will continue in 2020. Why? Because everyone loves a great story.
Vegan food is excellent, but when the story about The Slutty Vegan creating a multi-million dollar business in just six months hit, her notoriety climbed to new heights. When The Six Figure Chick shares how she beat cancer and went from running a juicing business to building a million-dollar business as an Instagram strategist and digital product creator, we jump for joy at her success.
There is a benefit to sharing your story and not just selling your product or service. Content is a way that you connect with your audience. You build that know, like, and trust factor through your social media posts, emails, various lead magnets, webinars, blog posts, etc. When you humanize yourself with your stories, both good and bad, it allows you to connect with your audience and often leads to better conversions overall than if you operate from a traditional advertising angle.
You might have even noticed that commercials from big brands love to tell a story to evoke emotions.
You can incorporate storytelling in various ways through your brand story, customer story, or the story behind the development of your product or service.
Share User-Generated Content
As a small business owner, especially if you're a solopreneur or only have part-time support, I'm sure you're wearing more hats than you care to admit. It's apart of the role, so anything that you can do to lighten your load is much appreciated. That's where user-generated content comes in.
When you use content created by your clients and customers, such as testimonials and reviews, you're able to save yourself from having to create more content yourself.
User-generated content you can use includes testimonials, pictures of customers using your product, photographs of your clients in the midst of going through your service, etc. Collecting this content can be an easy way to share information with your audience and build trust because we all love to be apart of what others are already taking part in.
Develop a system for gathering this content and store it so you can share it with your audience from time to time as part of your content plan.
Try Out Engaging Content
If you've ever voted on a poll on Instagram, you've participated in engaging content. While Instagram has done a great job of providing a platform to do this, there are many ways to create content that engages your audience on different platforms.
Examples of engaging content include Instagram stories, as mentioned previously, quizzes, contests, and polls.
When you incorporate engaging content, it helps your audience to stick around instead of doing a quick skim and moving on. Just like in school, you remember things that you take part in. In science class, you'll remember more about a subject if you do an experiment instead of reading in a textbook about it. The same is true with content. While it's traditionally a passive user experience, with things like live video and engaging content, it is becoming a more active experience for consumers, which is proving to be well accepted and valuable.
What Type of Content Marketing Will You Try in 2020?
There's no doubt that if you want your business to stand out and provide your audience with what they want and need, you should be developing a comprehensive content marketing plan. While doing so, be sure to keep these 4 types of content marketing in mind. Whether you start a podcast, use your Instagram stories more to build engaging content, or add storytelling to your social media posts, be consistent and show confidence in your ability to support and serve your audience.