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People are spending more time than ever consuming content. But with so many voices and choices, what makes an audience tune in and what makes them bounce? Adobe recently surveyed 1,000 U.S. consumers who own at least one digital device (i.e., a smartphone, tablet or computer) to find out. The second annual Brand Content Survey sheds light on what consumers want and how today’s tech trends influence consumer decisions.
“As a content marketer, if you’re just thinking about one channel you’re very much behind,” says Loni Stark, Sr. Director of Strategy & Product Marketing at Adobe. “It’s not just about making sure you have content that can be distributed to all these devices but also optimized for those devices.”
Whether your brand aims to reach millennial consumers or C-level executives, here are a few highlights from the study to keep in mind when developing your content strategy.
1) 28% of millennials use three or more devices at the same time frequently, a 130% increase year over year.
2) Millennials spend an average of 11 hours per day engaging with digital content compared to the U.S. average of 8.8 hours.
The rapid increase in time spent engaging with content means marketers looking to capture a share of that attention need to diversify their strategies.
Stark advises that embracing an omni-channel approach and paying attention to technology trends can help brands future-proof their content.
3) 19% of Gen-Xers and 31% of baby boomers say they never share content online.
The older consumers are, the less likely they are to share content online. With an average age of 54 in the U.S., how can marketers reach elusive C-Suite executives?
Though reluctant to share or engage on social networks, older consumers still spend an average of 7-9 hours per day online, according to the survey. “Everyone is consuming content—it’s a matter of how do you get the most valuable content to that group,” says Stark. She recommends creating content that’s exclusive, industry-specific and provides business value. While you don’t have to publish a 40-page white paper (CEOs like snackable content too), she says, well-researched content gives executives incentive to engage.
Offline, executives crave opportunities to network with each other and learn best practices face to face. Most execs can’t pick up the phone and call peers from other companies day to day, so industry events that foster a sense of community and spark dialogue offer real value.
4) 45% of consumers would abandon content that’s displaying poorly on their current device.
Optimizing for user experience becomes key when you consider the variety of devices customers use to consume content. Developments in artificial intelligence are reducing some of the heavy lifting required to create and adapt content, Stark says. Machine learning can help content creators wade through troves of assets to find relevant content and crop to appropriate sizes for various devices. AI tools also help marketers measure what’s working and what’s not, so they can adapt strategies.
5) 34% of consumers are more likely to make an unplanned purchase if a brand personalizes content.
Consumers expect some level of personalization, but brands, beware—crossing the line turns consumers away. Stark advises to apply the party test. Imagine how awkward it would feel if a stranger approached you at an event and already knew personal details about your life because they saw you on the guest list and Googled you? You would likely feel more at ease if you had been given the chance to introduce yourself. The same rules of engagement should apply for brands.
On the other hand, if you call a company you’ve done business with, you would expect a customer service rep to know your relevant account information to help streamline the call, Stark says.
Above all, the survey shows consumers value accurate and informative content. When your brand helps people do their jobs better, advance professionally and connect with like-minded people in new ways, it makes your content hard to ignore. The better you understand your audience’s needs and preferences, the more open they’ll be to receiving your message.
March 1, 2019 at 05:03PM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs