Feels like heading towards a new year holds a little less promise this time around, doesn’t it? As we all face continued uncertainty, it’s clear that we aren’t going to be able to do everything we have planned. So, where should you be focusing your efforts?
From the re-emergence of direct mail to a smart way of making existing content go further, there are a few areas to concentrate on if you want to get the most from your marketing in 2023…
1. The return of direct mail
We thought we’d kick off with the epitome of the ‘comeback kid’: direct mail campaigns! The effectiveness of sending physical marketing to prospects has been debated since time began. But as workers have now returned to the office, direct mail is proving to be a viable strategy for B2B brands once more. SeQuel Response reported a 34% increase in direct mail volumes since 2020, and with consumers increasingly inundated with ads online, it’s easy to see why.
2023’s version of direct mail is less about volume, and more about bringing in higher value leads as part of an account-based marketing strategy. First, you identify the clients you want to work with and the key person within that business, and then you think about how you’re going to stand out when they pick up the post in the morning.
To make your direct mail campaigns more impactful, think creatively – we’ve all received free samples and leaflets with our name on, but have you ever got a puzzle through your letterbox or had to hold something underwater to read it? Include highly personable elements that truly speak to the recipient too – make them feel like they’re the only one you sent something to.
Making your audience feel recognised is key to keeping them coming back for more. But hyper-personalisation can be used in more than just your direct mail campaigns.
Niching down your audience using paid ads is an effective way to make a much bigger impact with a smaller subset of your target market. Retargeting ads in particular allow you to better capture the people that are more familiar with your brand. The ‘we saw you looking’ and ‘you forgot something’ messages are two common examples used by ecommerce stores, but the principle remains the same: show you’re aware of their needs, and speak to where they are in the sales funnel.
Take advantage of being able to put what they want right in front of them – because if you’re not doing it, your competitors will be.
3. Multimedia content continues to reign
TikTok, YouTube, Spotify podcasts… the list goes on. Of course, we can only be talking about one thing: content delivered through the medium of video or audio.
As trends go, this one is still in its honeymoon phase. Take podcasts, for example – more than 19.1 million of us Brits listen to them. That’s nearly 30% of the entire UK population. Wistia reports that the total time spent watching video content has increased by 249% in the last five years too.
What’s more, social platforms are prioritising audio and video over static content. Twitter posts with video generate 10x the engagement, and it’s no secret that Instagram is prioritising Reels in our feeds. The good news is that there’s room for both, and this type of content can always be used again in another guise to hit audiences that prefer to consume it in another way…
4. Recycle, reuse, repurpose
Getting more mileage from your content is a smart way to maximise your efforts. And the best way to do this is through repurposing – taking something in one form (like a video) and turning it into something new entirely (like a blog).
Essentially, you’re creating more marketing material with fewer resources. It’s a trend that’s going to be particularly useful as businesses around the globe think about how they can get the most from tighter budgets.
Your latest eBook can be crafted using last month’s webinar content, for example – or that eBook could be turned into a series of blogs. How about turning a case study into a fun graphic for social, or adapting the conversations in your podcast to suit a whitepaper? The opportunities are yours for the taking.
5. Empathy, inclusivity and diversity
Empathetic, inclusive and diverse content is an absolute must. Salesforce defines this type of content as “elevating diverse voices and role models, decreasing cultural bias, and leading positive social change through thoughtful and respectful content”. And with consumer’s expectations around this only rising, you better be creating content that mirrors these values if you’re looking to make a mark this side of 2020.
Audiences have already started letting brands know that empathy, inclusion and diversity must transcend reposts and Instagram stories – we’ve spoken before about what happens when they attempt to jump on the bandwagon without much substance. But businesses that get it right can reap the rewards, as customers look beyond products and services to whether a brand matches their beliefs.
A good example of this is the effectiveness of Dove’s #ShowUs campaign, which encouraged women from all walks of life to share their thoughts on topics ranging from career to age. This allowed Dove to curate and nurture a positive community around the brand.
Looking for your 2023 content creators?
We live and breathe the written word all year round, so we know exactly what’s hot and what’s not when it comes to your content mix.Keen to find out how we can strengthen your 2023 marketing strategy? Let’s talk!