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Creating content that connects brands with audiences

The future of digital content: What does 2018 hold?

Change is a constant in B2B media. But before looking ahead to the future of digital content, it’s worth reflecting on recent developments. Like many other agencies, we’ve seen changes in the media landscape. And we’ve had to quickly respond to those changes to meet our clients’ needs.

The world was much simpler in the Nineties, especially for those of us who worked in financial media. I remember saying to my friends: “unless banks run out of money or magazines go out of fashion, business is pretty secure.” However, once my bubble had burst, I accepted that change is inevitable. It’s up to media owners and agencies to ensure we’re agile. Our agility will help businesses grappling with shifting marketing objectives and ambitious content KPIs. And this all feeds into the future of digital content.

From digital advertising to content campaigns

A few years ago, the bulk of our digital revenue came from display advertising. Today, that has moved more towards content and data – a trend that has gathered pace in 2017.

Caspian Media has responded differently to many other agencies by resisting the lure of programmatic advertising and refusing to follow the herd. Why? Because knowing what not to do is as important as identifying the next big thing.

Display advertising is now losing favour among agencies. It has become a component rather than the focus of marketing campaigns.

Agencies have also diversified in terms of talent – and our company is no exception. We’ve hired specialist journalists who work exclusively on client campaigns and are as comfortable with a camera as they are with a keyboard. Equally, the businesses we work with all want their content to be amplified to achieve broad reach with the right audiences. So, we’ve brought in more digital marketing expertise to deliver bespoke campaigns on other platforms. This includes social media and content hubs.

If you work with advertising agencies you’ll know that they keep you on our toes with the ever-changing range of KPI metrics they use to evaluate content campaigns. Against this backdrop, it’s important to offer continued differentiation as a media provider in the marketplace while maintaining the integrity of your brand. The future of digital content depends on it.

Creating content isn’t enough

Content marketing budgets appear to be growing exponentially. That’s seemingly good news for a media owner and content marketing agency. However, it’s not just about being able to write well or create content. The success of the journey ahead lies in having a sound and measurable strategy behind every content campaign. This strategy feeds into corporate objectives, is realistic, targeted and provides real value over time.

Most media owners and businesses in general are running headlong towards better data management ahead of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). If you haven’t already done so, strengthen your data team to ensure you are GDPR-compliant. This will also give you a competitive edge and help you to build and enhance relationships with your target audiences.

The future of digital content: More change?

Having started out in traditional contract publishing before moving into content marketing, we have skin in the game. By that I mean both the positive experiences and creative jeopardy that we encounter as we grow our own brands aid us as content providers.

Caspian Media has seen some flux in recent years. However, we’ve welcomed it because we’ve learnt to adapt and embrace the inevitable changes that come our way. To stay on top of the digital content game and remain a key player, ensure you exploit your own strengths as a business.

If you’d like to find out more about how content marketing can help you build your customer relationships, sales and business, do get in touch.

Caspian Media is a content marketing agency and owner of the UK’s most read SME website Real Business. We also run the highly regarded European private equity title Real Deals.

By Steven Randell, CEO, Caspian Media