2022 Forecast: 5 Predictions for Content Strategy

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By Laura Rives — Jan 6, 2022 2:00 PM

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The importance of content creation and content strategy is showing no signs of slowing down in 2022. User behavior and expectations are evolving rapidly, and the pandemic has heightened the need for reliable and timely information. And while these changes are dramatic, content teams have a great opportunity to differentiate themselves by anticipating intent and serving relevant content.

Let’s take a look at five content strategy trends we expect to see in 2022, and how they can lead to marketing success this year.

1. Increased focus on resonance versus reach

Continuing from 2021, now is the time to build your library of people-focused content, write with empathy, communicate with authenticity, and build stronger connections with your community. 

Highlighting where you fit in with consumer values should be at the forefront of your content strategy. Tell inspirational stories. Be memorable. Enable genuine and compelling interactions by going beyond persona definitions and learning how selection / buying decisions are made. 

2. Greater diversity in content formats

Organizations that take advantage of multimedia in 2022 will outshine competitors. It’s time to think beyond text only and create more immersive and interactive experiences for audiences. Video, audio, podcasts, gamification, and interactive elements will attract traffic and generate more conversions for your products and services.

3. Sharpened focus on E-A-T and Google algorithm updates

Google’s algorithms are a complex network of parameters used to present information in response to a query. To rank high on search engine results pages (SERPs), content must convey Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness. Make sure pages serve a beneficial purpose - and achieve that purpose well. Main content should be created with a high degree of time and effort, expertise, talent, and skill. 

Mistakes to avoid include:

  • An unsatisfying amount of main content for the purpose of the page
  • Punctuation and grammar errors, poor quality writing, inaccurate information
  • An exaggerated, misleading, or shocking title
  • Distracting or disruptive ads that break up main content
  • Indistinguishable ads (ex: ads have the same format as links to other articles)
  • An unsatisfying amount of information about the creator of the page
  • Lack of author expertise 

If you understand how quality raters and Google’s algorithms evaluate content, your pages will likely display higher in search results. Check out Google Search Central for help making your website discoverable.

4. Greater collaboration between content and customer-facing teams

Picture this: A visitor’s journey is off to a great start. They are engaging with a variety of content pieces you’ve published across multiple channels. They’ve even submitted a form to tell you more about themselves. Then, they have a 1:1 interaction with an admissions representative or salesperson who knows nothing about them and likely asks them to repeat information. Trust is lost.

This year, focus on internal transparency and cross-departmental sharing to deliver seamless experiences that pick up where they left off. Additionally, tighter alignment can help identify happy customers and capture their stories.

5. Prepare for continued virtual relationship building

2021 was about adopting new routines and adjusting to doing business virtually. This year, we’re settling in and finding creative ways to build relationships through video conferencing and virtual meetings. Hybrid events may enable some face-to-face contact, but we should prepare for mostly online experiences in 2022. 

To create and maintain relationships during this time, we need to focus on personalized content that forms a connection to us and our brand. Service niche audiences and prepare for quick interactions through tools like chat.

Wrap Up

The past two years have forced content teams to do more 180s than we’d like to admit. It has been a trying time and consumer preferences and behaviors are evolving rapidly. To succeed in 2022, organizations need to publish a variety of content formats, use an authentic voice, focus on their community, and abide by Google’s guidelines for higher search rankings. 

We look forward to what this year will bring, including its challenges, and are excited to embrace these trends.

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Laura Rives
VP of Sales and Marketing
  laura.rives@hannonhill.com

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