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CONTENT
Pred icti ons
FOR 2015
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Here are three predictions Im mulling over for the upcoming year:

We will see a surge in print magazines from brands in 2015. As most brands continue to
focus heavily on digital, smart brands will realize that it is much easier to cut through
the clutter by leveraging the post without much competition at all.

Medium-sized and large businesses will begin to purchase niche media companies be-
cause they thirst to create real relationships with targeted audiences.

We will begin to see well-known publishers and editors of B2B media franchises leave to
be recruited by large B2B brands, with technology companies leading the way.

Joe
PULIZZI
@JoePulizzi
Founder Content Marketing Institute
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

We will see a shift from discoverability-oriented content development and


distribution (SEO driven) to context-aware content. Its a shift from utility to
utility-in-the-moment. Think about how you can create and distribute content
triggered by weather, location, or news events. The bar will be raised on
hyper-relevance.

Julie
Fleischer
@JFLY
Director, Data + Content + Media Kraft Foods
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

It seems theres an appetite for brands to show consumers how theyre


changing the world. For brands, content marketing directly correlates to
what story they can tell. In 2015, creating engaging content will rely
on defining what that story is and finding the right people and mediums
to tell it.

Steve
Yuen
@Stevejonathan
University Marketing Specialist Zipcar
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

2015 is the year the nurturing and lead capture process finally gets customer-
friendly! Nurturing and soft gates will help marketers shift from buying 100% of
their leads to earning them via value-based content marketing.

Mike
WEIR
@mikedweir
Vertical Director, Technology Industry LinkedIn
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

In B2B in 2015, we will see:


More emotional content as we take on our B2C peers

Budgets shifting from creation towards promotion

The return of email and outbound

The rise of interactive more marketing apps

Marketing ops will come of age

We will graduate from data kindergarten

Doug
KESSLER
@dougkessler
Co-Founder, Creative Director Velocity
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

More companies will create content centers of excellence to increase the relevance and
consistency of brand stories shared across channels. That efficiency gains reduce costs
through better cross-purposing and distribution strategies will be an additional win.
Brand marketers will finally realize that audience personas (whether decision makers,
influencers, customers, or end users) are the only way to get the insights needed to develop
content strategies that resonate and motivate the willingness to embrace change with
your companys help. Finally, brand marketers will do away with the standalone campaign
to embrace the continuum experience to share a highly relevant story that engages
seamlessly across the entirety of the buyer-to-customer-to-advocate life cycle. No more
stops, starts, and stalls allowed.

Ardath
ALBEE
@ardath421
CEO & B2B Marketing Strategist Marketing Interactions, Inc.
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

For my safe, soft prediction, I predict 2015 as the year of content-as-process.


Brands will stop looking at content marketing as campaigns
and instead will look to create smart processes.

For the one you can call me out on: I predict that Google will acquire
Twitter, and SalesForce.com will acquire a content management company.

Robert
ROSE
@Robert_Rose
Chief Strategy Officer Content Marketing Institute
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Rather than trying to publish as much content as soon as possible, well


move towards content marketing thats both sustainable and reliable. Well
build up content suppliers (both internal and external), and work more
closely with other teams to act as content distributors (such as ad or social
media teams).

Pawan
Deshpande
@TweetsFromPawan
CEO Curata
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

2015 will be the year of cooperative content. Companies want to create more and
more content, but how can they do so efficiently (and affordably)? Increasingly,
the answer will be found in their customers and their employees. 2015 will bring
decentralized content creation programs with participants across the company
(not just marketing), as well as content initiatives that rely on user-generated
content in expanded and highly strategic ways. The best source of content in
most companies may be right under your nose: your employees and customers.

Jay
BAER
@jaybaer
President Convince & Convert
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

If you want your content to be great, get customers to participate! I think were
going to see a lot more of what I like to call participation marketing. The value
of co-creating content with the very audience you want to do business with is very
powerful. Participation marketing is co-creating content with existing customers,
partners and especially with prospective customers in the community, and I
think well see a lot more of that kind of crowdsourcing, which will affect content
development and promotions.

Lee
ODDEn
@leeodden
CEO TopRank Online Marketing
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

As marketers see the limited returns of merely creating bite-sized social


content, fat content will become the focus of marketers everywhere. This
includes content types like white papers, videos, eBooks, infographics...
content that can be broken up and used as the fuel for multi-channel
campaigns. Expect to see fatter content next year.

Jesse
Noyes
@noyesjesse
Senior Director of Content Marketing Kapost
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

The line between B2B and B2C content will start to blur as storytelling and the
customer experience become more important than ever. B2B companies will place
more of a focus on telling compelling and interesting stories in a more humanistic and
entertaining way. B2B content marketers will have to be multi-dimensional and more
multi-channel, focusing more on behavior and emotional appeal.

In addition, mobile and multi-device content will become increasingly more important.
I think more and more content will be read on mobile and tablet devices in 2015, so
marketers will have to think about mobile user experience with all of their content and
even create content specific to mobile devices. Wearable technology will also add an
additional layer to providing content user experiences on-the-go.

Dayna
Rothman
@dayroth
Senior Content Marketing Manager Marketo
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Content creation has gotten a lot of attention lately, but content


management and distribution will rule the day in 2015 (watch out, here
comes the analogy...). You can have the nicest car (read: content) in the
world, but if no one knows about it, you wont be able to sell it.

Mike
MYERS
@mikemyers614
Consultant, Content Marketing Nationwide
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

In the words of Frank Underwood, Theres no better way to overpower a


trickle of doubt than with a flood of naked truth. Brand storytelling will
get even more authentic and candid, and people will not be able to get
enough of it.

Patricia
Travaline
@travwin
VP, Marketing Skyword
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

The second generation of content marketing will emerge, and its leaders
wont necessarily come from the marketing tech ranks. Were starting to
see fresh content marketing thinking coming from unexpected places, like
the landmark Thom Yorke/ BitTorrent collaboration and viral campaigns
from non-profits. This trend will accelerate in 2015.

Joe
CHERNOV
@Jchernov
VP of Content HubSpot
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Content marketing will become marketing...


no more watching from the sidelines.

Craig
HODGES
@king_content
CEO King Content
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I think we are going to see more of a move toward apps and presenting
content in an aggregated and curated fashion, so people can get the
information they need served contextually for them. Think the Youtility
model. I also think were going to see SEO continue to evolve and change as
mobile forces a different game.

Ahava
Leibtag
@ahaval
President Aha Media Group
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

2015 will be the year of mobile-first. Get it to work on mobile-first


and let all other platforms follow. Well all be sick of hearing it by the
end of the year.

John
FOX
@b2bmarketing
CMO Venture Marketing
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I predict that companies will pay better attention to their global web
presence and make needed changes so they can engage with customers
worldwide.

Val
Swisher
@ContentRulesInc
CEO Content Rules, Inc.
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

2015 is the year content will get personal! Chief Content Officers will
become a real thing, with budgets and the authority to drive strategic
content programs. Well move beyond quantity + quality, to creating
the right content for the right person in the right place and time.
Content will get personal as people-centric marketing takes over.

Michael
brenner
@BrennerMichael
Head of Strategy NewsCred
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I believe 2015 will be the year where SMBs embrace content marketing
massively. This will be made possible by ROI becoming much clearer
and more direct (maybe well start to measure CCPL i.e., content
cost per lead?).

Guillaume
Decugis
@gdecugis
Co-Founder & CEO Scoop.it
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Content marketing slides down from heightened expectations to disillusionment as brands


begin to realize content marketing isnt the same thing as merely producing content. Whether
on television or YouTube, an advertisement is still an advertisement, and advertisements
are rarely helpful. Those brands that are not succeeding will maintain the vain search for a
silver marketing bullet; they hire a new CMO every two years who continues to run the CMO
playbook: a) fire an agency, b) reorganize staff, c) launch a rebranding campaign. Those that
are succeeding will double-down their investment and add the responsibility of producing
useful content to roles across the organization and most notably to those outside merely
marketing. The gap between these two lines of thought will widen. Content marketing will
become increasingly a requisite skill for most employees a minimum barrier to entry, no
different than using a telephone or sending an email.

Frank
STRONG
@Frank_Strong
Communications Director Lexis
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

The content marketing trend will reach corporate communication, starting


with CSR. Its a great source of engaging stories, and companies are used
to telling them. Well also see groundbreaking content marketing efforts in
investor relations, R&D, and public affairs.

Joakim
Arhammar
@jarhammar
Content Strategist Comprend
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

From research from CMI and others, weve been seeing and reading about
the greater need for a documented content strategy. Now is the time to have
content marketers really step up and lead a centralized organization that
directs, creates (or supports the creation of), and distributes content.
2015 will see the end of fractured programs and tactics.

Amanda
Maksymiw
@amandamaks
Content Marketing Manager Lattice Engines
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

In 2015, businesses must evolve how they plan and measure content.
There are still too many marketers who are not understanding the value of
content marketing. This is common when strategies, goals, and metrics are
not clearly spelled out up front. Better planning will lead to better results.

Tommy
LANDRY
@tommy_landry
President Return On Now
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Smaller businesses will realize that they need to up their content


marketing game if they are going to stay relevant as big brands
continue to ramp up brand journalism. Smaller, more agile
organizations will increasingly find ways to insert themselves into the
conversation using storytelling.

Maggie
Patterson
@magspatterson
Communications Strategist Maggie Patterson - Intelligently Crafted Communications
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Remarkable content and storytelling isnt enough. Marketing technology,


specifically marketing automation and analytics platforms, will play an
increasingly important role in the planning, creation, and distribution of
content. The technology enables marketers to be more sophisticated in
targeting the right content, to the right audiences, at the right times. High-
performing content marketers must become hybrids part marketer, part
technologist.

Paul
Roetzer
@Paulroetzer
CEO PR 20/20
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

With a close eye on Amazon Local, more brands will test hyper-local
content in 2015. Peer-to-peer marketing has a natural home in local
communities. It will be a refreshing step away from content fatigue; but
hyper local will also be susceptible to over-saturation with white noise.

Patrick
Hayslett
@patrickhayslett
Marketing Communications @LinguaLinx
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Brands will recognize the role of editor as the missing link to true content
marketing effectiveness. Weve figured out how to create content and how
to publish, but cant move firmly into brand journalism until we adopt an
editorial discipline.

Sarah
Mitchell
@globalcopywrite
Head of Content Strategy Lush Digital Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

My prediction is that brands will start leveraging niche blogging networks more,
through sponsored events and professional development programs. Companies
are looking for cost-effective solutions for increasing their reach and impact,
and they are starting to realize that by supporting the growth of the blogging
community, they are investing in relationships that can bring them a return on
investment in the long term.

Cas
McCullough
@casmccullough
Founder Content Marketing Cardiology
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

The consumer will become the marketers most effective tool. Currently many brands
rely heavily on traditional forms of sharing content i.e., paid advertising space
on Facebook. In the future, marketers will increasingly use consumers as brand
ambassadors. To earn this unwritten title, they would have already bought in to the
brand due to the sharing of content, buying a product, or joining the companys social
media community. Brands will build communities where these brand ambassadors can
access content and share it with others.

Lucy
Helliwell
@ljhelliwell
Senior Content Producer Lush Digital Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

People outside of marketing will begin to understand the importance of content.


Its not something that is simply for marketing, but rather its an asset that
needs to be managed across the organization. The better the coordination and
management of the content, the better your customers and prospects will feel
about your company as theyll have a consistent experience.

Michele
LINN
@michelelinn
VP of Content Content Marketing Institute
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Advanced content strategy informed by multiple data sources will help shape
a brand marketers content in 2015. Brand personalities will arise to inspire
crowdsourced content created by wearable technology & other hardware-
software integrations. Virtual content will step into the real world (aka Amazon
stores), closing the online/offline distribution divide.

Carla
DEWING
@carladewing
Contrast Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I am seeing lots of advertisers & everyday folks switching from putting


videos on YouTube to putting them on Facebook. I think in 2015, Facebook
will be at risk of junking its news feeds with all this stuff and it may backfire
and drive users to users to Google or other platforms.

Karyn
Gavzer
@karyngavzer
Consultant KG Marketing & Training, Inc.
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Marketing technology will allow marketers to create smarter, more targeted, and more
effective content marketing campaigns in 2015. The most effective content marketers
will make it their business to understand, not necessarily exactly how particular
technologies work, but rather what can be achieved with certain technologies i.e.,
the potential of marketing technology. They may not have a marketing technologist
in place (yet), but they will structure their teams and agencies in such a way that they
have access to tech skills.

Karen
WEBBER
@webber_karen
Marketing Director Axonn Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I expect to see big brands increasingly steer away from Twitter its too difficult to control those
hashtag conversations. Haters are quick to jump all over the brand names on that platform, as recently
happened when Ronald McDonald started tweeting.

Pinterest and Facebook seem to work better (brands can always hide hater comments on their FB
business pages). With Googles continuing campaign to exclude SEO-focused junk content from
its results, well see more detailed, long-form blog posts, and more interviews and research. The
distinction between a blog post and an article will continue to blur, as internet news sites scramble
to stay competitive by delivering magazine-quality stories. Therell be more of a call for sophisticated
ghostwriters for CEOs and other thought leaders, who can create the kind of posts that build authority
and bring leads and a struggle by writers to educate the industry about appropriate pay for longer
posts. (Hint: 1,000-word posts should pay twice as much as 500-word ones.)

Carol
TICE
@TiceWrites
Den Mother, Freelance Writers Den TiceWrites LLC
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Why would we predict when we can know? Look for evidence, then help bring
to life the expressed and/or latent desires people have. Contents value: It gives
brands the ability to gain a nuanced understanding of their audiences through
a simultaneous process of examining alternative story lines and engaging the
remix culture of the web.

Valeria
Maltoni
@ConversationAge
Founder & CEO Conversation Agent LLC
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Content marketing success will depend I can see campaigns emerging that
more than ever on the strength of the encompass a variety of content (video,
collaboration between the marketing and design, copy) all with a common focus.
creative teams. It will equally depend on Those who plan ahead well and are
these stakeholders ability to translate their strategic in nature will reap the benefits.
joint perspective into visually rich content.

Francis
It takes a village to build truly impactful
content that drives results.

Richard MA
VP of Content
Pattinson Brafton
@Brafton
CEO Brafton
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

As branding ascends as a marketing Successful content marketing will, more than


priority, digital leaders will use a smart ever, come as a result of conceiving of and
mix of videos, blogs, and design to define creating the content and user experience as
and differentiate themselves. Tone and one. Gone are the days when web design and
style will transcend every channel with a content can be effective in silos.
consistency we havent encountered before.
#BrandIsAVerb
Colin
Katherine Campbell
Lead Strategist
Griwert Brafton
@kgriwert
Marketing Director Brafton
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Theres a definite need to scale back on Brands will continue to pursue personal
volume and, instead, focus on quality. connections through social mediums and
Marketers will need to generate content campaigns evoking heartfelt emotion.
that cant already be found in 25,000 other Communicating through mobile devices
places, which means they will need to be and other handhelds will have brands
deep thinkers and strong analyzers. reaching users at the most relevant times
to experience their brand.
Sara
BERKE Andrew
@CMSaraB WALTERS
Senior Content Marketing Strategist @walterscontent
Brafton Content Marketing Strategist Brafton
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

In 2015, the shift from all text to visual will While video may be the preferred content
continue. But marketers who are ahead of type of 2014 and beyond, I think marketers
the curve will start to move past creating will begin to look at new ways to repurpose
content purely for consumption and begin their other existing content types and get
to create assets that start a two-way the extra mile out of their existing content
interaction. #BrandIsAVerb efforts.

Lauren Hollie
KAYE Farrahi
@LaurenEkstrandK @HollieFarrahi
Marketing Editor Brafton Senior Content Marketing Strategist
Brafton
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

The top-down model will be flipped. In addition to creating content, brands


will invite their users to create, share, and discuss their own. Positive
customer experiences are powerful, but they need the forum to be shared.
Brands will increasingly focus on creating this outlet and prompting fans to
share their experiences.

Brian
Honigman
@brianhonigman
Marketing Consultant Honigman Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Four-dimensional content will emerge as a strong business case for investment.


This includes creating bespoke content for specific individuals only the
influencers. Or creating content with an evergreen functionality far greater
than traditional content e.g., utilizing many data resources at once, such as
Amazon Echo hardware or creating content that constantly updates. This comes
at the same time as publishers starting to use their own content as the native
advertising opportunity for any brand to sponsor, based on targeting specific
readers with personal recommendations.

Matt D.
Wright
@MatDWright
Content Insights Lead Adjust Your Set
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I predict more collaborations of multiple forms of content infographics,


video, audio files, and written copy to create a comprehensive piece of work
that combines two key elements: data and stories. People can take their own
preferred piece of the content away and share.

Halit
Bozdogan
@TheBozDog
Content Creative Axonn Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Mobile will become do or die. Not only will search engines continue to favor
mobile more and more, the on-the-go experience giving customers what they
need, when they want it, will be critical and expected.

Cathy
McPhillips
@cmcphillips
Marketing Director Content Marketing Institute
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Content marketing ecosystems will be created including websites with


personalization, marketing automation, CRM, and eDM platforms. Content ideas
will be developed to production and mapped to customer personas and lifecycles
on content management platforms. Automation will ensure content is distributed
to the customer at the right time on the right channel.

Alana
Fisher-Chejoski
@aussiegoldy
Senior Digital & Content Strategist NSW Trade & Investment
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Here in the German-speaking world, in 2015 companies will finally start to understand that content
marketing is more than online attraction. Lead generation could be the key that opens the door to sales
directors or even CEOs. In the moment, the term leads gets 2,400 Google searches per month. Let us
see if there is a significant growth in 2015.

In these countries we will also see a substantial number of specialized new content marketing agencies.

The biggest challenge in 2015 will be as it is now: the production of content that converts. Journalists
who learn how to write for lead generation will soon be in the role of developers: highly searched for
and well paid. How will we know if this prediction comes true? It is the hourly payment. The payment for
content marketing journalists will reach the realm of developers.

Martin
Bredl
@mbredl
Managing Partner Take Off PR
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

2015 will be a year for listening listening to data, to your audience, and also to
your instincts. People will realize that being the same as everybody else will not
get you ahead in the industry. It will be a change in the way we create content.

Charlotte
Bennett-Smith
@Char_Bennett_
Axonn Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

In 2015, I think we will see less copy and more data visualization. Infographics
will become more widely accepted as the means to convey a story, solution,
or statistics.

Laura
CRAVEN
@dadepaper
Director of Communications Dade Paper
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Consumers have been advertised at for too long, and companies will
have to become increasingly honest. Were not the best, but we are
trying our best to get there will be the overarching message from brand
marketers in 2015.

Neil
WILSON
@axonnmedia
Senior Finance Specialist Axonn Media
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

With the foundation and success of subscription marketing and sales this year
(think Dollar Shave Club), subscription marketing will continue to expand to
many more industries as consumers look for simple, time-saving solutions.

Heidi
RUST
@hlrMN
Web Marketing Specialist Esultants Web Services
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I think all content marketing innovation will be driven by one overwhelming factor:
exploding information density on the web. The challenge of cutting through this
density and holding on to customer mindshare will force us to evolve our strategies.
In 2015, Ill be looking for breakthroughs in content formats (interactive video?), an
emphasis on extreme, heroic content (movie-quality), and an acceleration of the trend
of marginal content producers falling by the wayside as the cost to compete increases
in many sectors (i.e., declines in free Facebook reach).

Mark
Schaefer
@markwschaefer
Executive Director Schaefer Marketing Solutions
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

Prospects are tired of the onslaught of messages competing for their attention.
To cut through it, marketers will need to show their realness. Relatable people
with faces and names thats where marketers need to go.

Andrea
Bridges-Smith
@abridgessmith
Senior Content Marketing Strategist Spanning Cloud Apps
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

I think more marketing professionals will realize how important content promotion
is to the content marketing equation and how much really goes into doing it well. Im
surprised there arent more positions in content marketing departments focused on
promotion or freelancers marketing their services this way already. Right now, too
many businesses lump it in as an extra with content creation or think a few simple
social media updates will do the trick, when really theres a more involved process and
skill set involved. I suspect that will change and more people will carve out careers with
content promotion as a central skill.

Kristen
HICKS
@atxcopywriter
Freelance Copywriter Austin Copywriter
60 CONTENT PREDICTIONS FOR 2015

This year, weve seen a change emerging where marketing and sales are starting to
focus on adopting the buyers perspectives with regards to selling. This customer-
based selling is not selling in the traditional sense but rather its more about
helping customers to buy a subtle but distinctive shift in mindset and content
is absolutely key to the success of this effort.Moving into 2015, well see content
play an even more critical role in the customer-based selling process, as marketing
and salespeople look to share insights and engage customers based on what they
need to make it easier for them to buy.

Cliff
POLLAN
@cliffpollan
Founder, CEO Postwire
About Content Marketing Institute
Content Marketing Institute (CMI) is the leading global content marketing education and training organization. CMI
teaches enterprise brands how to attract and retain customers through compelling, multi-channel storytelling. CMIs Content
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Learn which trends are on the horizon for making content more efficient and scalable in 2015.
Check out our list of Intelligent Content Predictions.