The content genie has well and truly been released from its bottle and there’s no stuffing it back in. Our worlds have become a swirl of infinite content – audio and text from the moment we rub the sleep from our eyes until we fall back into slumber – the content sprites wink, wave and whistle for our attention.
It’s all happened so fast too. Ninety percent of the data in the world today has been created in the last two years alone. And in that time, we’ve developed a voracious appetite for new content. According to online publication Entrepreneur just one segment of the market, Millennials Spend 18 Hours a Day Consuming Media.
To keep up with the all-consuming content cravings, marketers are also now creating more content than ever before. In one Kapost survey, 70% of marketers said they are creating more or “significantly more” content.
At this stage you may be feeling submerged by this wave of content. However, it’s best if you get out your marketing surfboards and learn how to navigate the swell and breaks.
But how do you decide which content to create when there are plenty of options? Here’s why you should be using text and audio in your content marketing approach.
AUDIO: Talk to me
Unlike any other medium audio gives you an intimate communication experience. Once you pop on your headphones, it’s just you and the story-teller. But distinct from reading a book or watching a movie, audio allows the listener to create your own version of characters and the only limiting factor is how far your imagination will take you.
‘It’s 9 o’clock do you know where your children are?” They’re the gripping words that will stay with you long after you’ve hit the stop button on Atlanta Monster. It’s a true crime podcast that re-examines the disappearance and murder of over 25 African-American children and young adults some 40 years ago. While this podcast contextualises a story about race, crime and justice – it’s not alone in its ability to be able to elicit an emotional response from the listener.
For marketers, audio presents a unique opportunity – you’ve got somebody’s undivided attention. And a lot has been written about the emotional appeal of podcasts. There are also plenty of first-hand studies that show the influence of audio in communicating brand messaging. iHeart Media’s research into the impact of sound indicates that audio has the power to improve brand perception and build positive association with a company.
The power of audio
And there’s more good news. On average, people spend 4 hours a day listening to audio.According to Nielsen, 79% of audio is consumed when people are on the go – in the car, on the treadmill or walking the dog. These are spaces where visual media can’t reach, and it provides a unique opportunity to engage with people through audio.
When it comes to podcasts specifically, research from Acast shows 50% of Millennials listen to podcasts regularly, and monthly podcast listeners are more engaged with other media than the general population. The same research tells us that “listeners love podcasts because they teach them something new and allow them to indulge in their passions and interests.” An Edison report tells us podcasting continues to rise, with monthly listeners growing from 21% to 24% year over year.
Everyone’s a story-teller
It’s no wonder that more and more brands are jumping on the podcasting bandwagon. More recently KLM Royal Dutch Airlines announced an original podcast offering – the podcast “tells unique and true tales of people whose lives have been changed by a journey.”
And we’re seeing the rise and rise of new podcast empires like Wondery who wants to become Hollywood’s podcast dream factory. They’ve already created some winning podcasts like Dirty John, Young Charlie, American History Tellers and Business Wars.
That’s not all. We’re moving into an era of voice first interactions – already 22% of searches on Google are conducted by voice. And according to Gartner by 2020, 30 percent of web browsing sessions will be done without a screen and “as a result, the share of waking hours devoid of instant access to online resources will approach zero.”
TEXT: Create actions
Words can leave a lasting impression and have a powerful impact. When entrepreneur, bestselling author, and philanthropist Tony Robbins talks about the power of words he says, “Throughout human history, our greatest leaders and thinkers have used the power of words to transform our emotions, to enlist us in their causes, and to shape the course of destiny. Words cannot only create emotions, they create actions. And from our actions flow the results of our lives.”
The art and science of copywriting
For marketers, it’s important to know who reads your words and tailor each turn-of-phrase to them. Using the art of persuasion, you need to create messages that stick – but persuasion is not only an art, it’s also a science.
Back in 1984, Dr. Robert B. Cialdini wrote a book called “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion” and it’s been on the list of copywriters for years. One of the biggest takeaways is to write like a human, to create a connection with the reader. This rule applies whether you’re writing website copy, a social media post or a long form feature article.
Blogging: make each word count
If you’ve ever spent hours aimlessly starring at a screen (or more traditionally a blank page) you know that blogging is hard work. Writing something compelling requires research, time and the right words – and most importantly it needs to add value. But great content seems to be more the exception than the norm. There are hundreds and hundreds of blogs cluttering the internet. But only some that adhere to sound journalistic standards and give readers useful information. It’s crucial that you get this right. Avoid writing fluff and make substance the key to your blogging success.
Benefits of blogging: it’s just good business
If the pen is mightier than the sword, blogging is the weapon you need in your marketing arsenal. According to HubSpot, marketers who are consistent with blogging are 13 times more likely to get a return on investment (ROI). Every time you write a blog post, it’s another opportunity for your business to turn up on the site search results and drive traffic to your website.
Blogging also helps your business get discovered through social media. Creating meaningful, shareable blogs can be leveraged through various social channels – LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and Facebook – to attract new readers to your site. And don’t forget the words you use in social media are just as important as the words in your blog posts. Pithy, punchy phrases will entice social surfers to click through to your blog, and hopefully once you get them there they’ll stick like bears to honey.
For a better understanding of the power of audio, our podcasts give you a range of program styles to sample, including documentary, long-form interview and public presentation.