Years from now, as a marketer, what would you want your content marketing software stack to look like? Would it be a set of integrated, best-in-breed tools, or a single platform that does everything? Would it even be called a content marketing platform?
In 2019, content marketing software isn’t what you would call “novel”, but it’s becoming something that more and more companies use, with the market expected to hit $9.59 billion by 2023.
With the rapid growth of content marketing software, are the platforms available today cutting the mustard? Or, is there room for improvement? Further, what features should they have now and in the future?
First, it’s important to consider how content marketing will evolve.
The Future of Content Marketing
In the past, having a healthy blog, optimizing for SEO, and dispersing your content on social media was enough. But the game is more complex and competitive today.
We’re basically drowning in content and without a cohesive content strategy that has a consistent message, content doesn’t always translate into results. It’s easy to see why and how content marketing is changing. So, how will the future impact content marketing and what can you do to ensure it generates traffic and leads for your company?
- Focus on evergreen content: this content doesn’t lose value over time. While it’s still important to create content on timely topics, evergreen content can drive more traffic and be freshened up occasionally and redistributed.
- Use your data: all your content should be measured. Your content marketing metrics should be painting a complete story for your efforts. They should be guiding you on what’s working and what’s not so you can optimize and build new content based on performance.
- Create smarter SEO strategies: you are at the mercy of ever-changing algorithms for ranking. You have to consider how SEO is changing with voice search and search by digital assistants. You’ll also need to put work into your featured snippets. SEO is a moving target and one you have to stay vigilant about.
- Build content around topics: this is where you can let thought leadership be a force for your content marketing around one topic. Topic clusters have been extolled as the future of SEO and content marketing, so leverage them. Topic clusters start with pillar content, then spin off (with hyperlinks) with additional cluster content.
- Experiment with new methods: it’s easy to get into a rut in your content marketing. You just keep plugging along at the same pace, doing the same things. But you need to keep testing, experimenting, and pushing boundaries. Try new types of content, including making more videos, engaging in conversational marketing, or working on ways to distribute content in new mediums.
Understanding how content marketing is evolving is central to the future of content marketing software. The platform of the future needs to be flexible and robust. It needs to offer features that will help your content team be more productive and deliver high-quality pieces.
Content Marketing Software: What You Need Now and in the Future
There are lots of options when it comes to content marketing software. Many platforms have similar features, but what do you really need? What will streamline processes, provide organizational tools, and help your content convert?
Let’s look at the key features your content marketing software needs to have now and in the future.
The content calendar is one of the most important aspects of content marketing software. It’s your central hub where every content project lives. It helps overcome silos and provides accessibility and transparency.
Your content calendar should have these important features:
- Ability to organize by team, region, or business unit
- Management of shared and private calendars
- Filtering by category, keyword, team member, and more
- Task, asset, or campaign management
- Customizable configurations
- Automated notifications to changes
- Enhanced communication between team members
As content marketing shifts and changes, you’ll need a content calendar to keep everything running seamlessly.
Automation has become a major player in the world of marketing. If there are tasks that don’t really require human intervention, then you should embrace automation. Your content marketing software should enable content automation to assist your team, saving time and resources.
So, what kind of content automation should you be leveraging now?
- Production workflows: create workflow templates for projects that you do most often so that tasks, assignments, and production schedules can be automated.
- Content and social publishing: it can take lots of man hours to manually post all your content and distribute it, so find a software platform that has robust publishing automation and allows you to control everything from one hub.
- Reporting: analytics are essential in content marketing. With preconfigured dashboards pulling data from numerous sources, you’ll have a real-time view of performance and be able to automate reports that can be shared with leadership.
- Notifications and reminders: don’t depend on email for communication about projects; instead, use content marketing software that automates notifications and reminders so they are less likely to be missed.
As AI and machine learning become more a part of daily business life, content automation will include new capabilities that will bring great value and efficiency to your content marketing efforts.
For example, imagine a future where your content platform leverages AI to execute the following:
- It recommends keyword-rich topics and headlines that are trending, or have driven the most engagement and conversions in the past
- It assigns creative duties to those whose past assets have achieved the best engagement related to the topic
- It determines publish dates that best align with your existing editorial calendar
- It builds out production workflows for the creative team
- While writing content, it suggests edits to maintain brand standards and improve readability and SEO optimization
- It creates and publishes it’s own social promotions for the best times that it should be promoted
- It notifies employees who have requested content on this topic in the past
- It sends promotional emails to influencers and media outlets who regularly cover the topic
- And finally, it tracks and reports a running total of all leads and revenue that has come from each piece of content.
Now that, my friends, is some automation that we can get behind. Note that some of these activities can already be done with current technology, but the tech will continue to improve in ease of use, setup and accessibility.
With the right content marketing software, content management is simplified and more accessible by a larger portion of your organization. You shouldn’t have to worry about someone breaking something in your CMS, or use many different programs to facilitate the management of your content.
Content management may be the most important aspect of having a centralized platform. No matter what type of content you create or how large your team, you’ll need more than spreadsheets and project management systems to keep everything straight.
A robust, content process management platform gives you a highly efficient command center that’s easy to use and adoption by team members will be easier, ensuring you get the ROI you expect from your software purchase.
The future of content marketing software has a lot to do with you—marketers! With your feedback, new functionality will be considered and possibly added. At DivvyHQ, we love to hear from marketers about what they want to see in a content marketing platform. Get in touch today to share your ideas!