Like every other aspect of our economy, content marketing has been impacted by an unprecedented confluence of challenges. For starters, the pandemic-fueled consumer spending bubble is a thing of the past, thanks to inflation, fears around a recession, sky-high interest rates and stubborn supply-chain issues. But content marketing is also impacted by less obvious trends — in technology, media consumption habits and privacy laws, not to mention cultural shifts ushered in by Gen Z, a brand-new generation of consumers for marketers to engage.
At Foundry 360, we’ve always felt that the holidays are a bad time to pitch predictions: Racing to close out the year — and looking forward to a glass of something bubbly — our vision is less than 20/20. No, the cold, clear light of the new year is perfect for prognosticating. So here are seven staff picks for the trends and topics that will impact content marketing in 2023, along with the invitation to get in touch with us. We’d love to discuss them with you!
Smart brands will optimize what they’ve got.
“Content has a shelf life, and while companies tend to have a lot of content in their ‘libraries,’ some of it is outdated or misaligned with current strategy,” says Robin Riddle, Foundry 360’s chief strategy officer. “A strong content partner — talk to us! — can take on the process and protocols around updating and recomplying existing content in an efficient way.”
First-party data will become ever more critical.
“With the coming deprecation of third-party cookies — as well as other, more stringent privacy laws — brands have a narrow window for pivoting toward new strategies,” says George Baer, SVP and managing director of Foundry 360. “No matter your product or service, creating and nurturing first-party relationships with consumers is key.”
TikTok will continue to impact branded video — especially for your brand’s youngest consumers.
“Never before has there been a channel that has so defined a format as TikTok,” says David Matt, VP and chief creative officer at Foundry 360. “And there are many factors to consider when creating video with a TikTok sensibility, including video length (short!), the use of influencers and other personalities, and also a lo-fi quality that conveys immediacy and intimacy.”
Strategy — always the smart first step — will become ever more aligned with the costumer's journey as brands look to optimize their marketing budgets.
“Customer journeys will be more closely aligned with content strategy. We will use data to fuel content at each stage of the purchase funnel with increased importance. This will impact measurement, editorial choices, design and call to actions,” says Dan Rubin, VP of Marketing at Foundry 360. “Get ready to start each strategy with a journey.”
Hybrid staffing models will dominate as brands discover that insourcing and outsourcing are not mutually exclusive.
“We’ve always found that there’s magic in teams that blend internal and external talent,” says Paschal Fowlkes, director of Business Development at Foundry 360. “Our internal staff has a deep bench of subject matter experts to deploy when needed. No matter how specialized the topic — from AI to home decor — we have access to the best content creators, a capability that comes with being embedded in the country’s largest publisher.”
AI will impact search — but, in 2023 anyway, it won’t change how high-quality content marketing is made.
“AI is already making the search experience more answer-based — as opposed to the traditional page full of links,” says Diane di Costanzo, VP, editorial director and chief content officer at Foundry 360. “But creating high-quality content that holds up to the scrutiny and standards of client-side approvers like medical and legal reviewers? Well, that requires humans.”
The consumer spending tide will turn — so be ready!
“A light might just be at the end of the tunnel. Goldman Sachs predicts a reversal in household discretionary cash flow in 2023 that could mean good things for big box retailers,” says Marco Zuccarello, Foundry 360’s director of Strategy & Marketing. “This makes the need for authentic connections through storytelling that much more important. Content can help brands compete beyond price and show their true value to consumers.”
2023 will be a formative year for content marketing. As an industry we are established and recognized as an integral part of the marketing ecosystem. We also recognize that every industry and every company requires a custom solution based on many factors including objectives, budget, organizational structure and industry. We look forward to discussing your content marketing at any time. Please reach out to George at George.Baer@dotdashmdp.com