Marketing Trends Series: The Rise of Interactive Content
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Modern marketing is about more than just informing — it’s about engaging. Marketers are expected to create campaigns that engage their audiences, encouraging them to take action and become customers who keep coming back again and again.
Content marketing has become one of the most effective ways to engage an audience. About 70 percent of marketers are creating more content today than they were even just a year ago. But the field of content marketing has become more than just blogs, articles, and videos.
Over the last few years, we have seen the rise of interactive forms of content, which are expected to be one of the dominating marketing trends of this year.
“Internet. Interactive. The two were destined to collide. The term ‘internet' came to be because it connected networks. The prefix ‘Inter' means ‘between.' It follows that ‘interactive' means ‘action between.' Or something like that. The point is we were destined to interact online. We live for interaction and the Internet lives to give it to us.”
Here are the five main types of interactive forms of content:
- Assessments: Users answer a series of questions and are then placed into several categories. You’ve likely seen plenty of Buzzfeed quizzes like “Which Disney character are you?” plastered all over your Facebook feed — this is a quintessential example.
- Calculators: Answers provided by users get plugged into a set of calculations on the back end that then provide a unique, numeric result for the person entering the numbers.
- Trivia: Again, these are popular all over social media, from Sporcle quizzes to “How many U.S. Presidents can you name?” quizzes from sites like Buzzfeed.
- Polls/Surveys: Used to get feedback, opinions and insight from users who fill out a questionnaire you provide for them.
- Brackets: Tournament-style content set up to determine a winner. March Madness is the first and most obvious example that comes to mind.
Interactive forms of content can be used by just about anyone, from media stalwarts like Buzzfeed and The New York Times to small businesses. It has even begun to pick up in the B2B marketing world as a means of building up larger databases, developing more thorough prospect profiles, and improving lead scoring.
What makes interactive forms of content so effective?
Interactive forms of content essentially allow you to have a more dynamic conversation with your audience. While blogs and articles have plenty of informative benefits, they are more about you sharing information than actually having a conversation. Interactive content promotes more engagement and enthusiasm among your audience.
One of the main reasons why it works is that the allure of testing themselves, competing with others, sharing their opinions, and comparing their results with friends is just too much for many people to resist. This type of content is extremely shareable on social media, as well. You’ve likely noticed how when one person on your newsfeed takes and shares a quiz, it begins to make the rounds among your mutual friends.
Ultimately, this kind of content provides a different kind of value to your customers than your blogs, articles, or videos. They get immediate and personalized results that they care about looking at.
This interactivity provides a number of benefits to marketers as well. You are able to learn a lot more about your audience when they are more eager about providing you with feedback or information. It gives you a better idea of the kinds of thoughts and emotions your customers experience so you are better able to connect with them and market to them.
Start planning your content
Of course, it’s not enough to just throw together a quiz and hope your audience takes it. Like any type of marketing, interactive content takes a great deal of planning and strategy to ensure it is actually as effective as you want it to be.
For more information about interactive forms of content and how to develop a strategy of your own, contact us at Viral Solutions today.