While some businesses have started slowly putting on in-person events, other businesses are realizing that the eagerness to return to in-person events may not be there quite yet. For example, SaaStr just put on their annual event, shifting the whole event to an outdoors setting, with very minimal indoor activity. On the other hand, HubSpot will make their annual Inbound event a digital one again. 

While there may be an appetite for in-person events, digital events are here to stay. However, after a year and a half of webinars and virtual happy hours, audiences are sick of screen time being their only form of personal connection and socialization within the business environment. The additional hours or attention spent online has become tedious and tiring for people, decreasing overall engagement. 

So what does this mean for your customer’s content journey? 

It means you need to be unique. While articles can work (we’re still writing them), you need to also expand your content footprint to meet the digital demands of your users and provide them options. By doing this, you can avoid that digital monotony.

Read on to find out how to create more engaging content and release your audience from the current digital monotony. 

Why Authenticity Matters

The goal of content creation is to create content that is relatable and humanized. But what does that mean, exactly? It simply means that with any good content creation strategy, your organization should always strive to put customer needs at the center. 

As social beings, humans have a strong need to connect with their peers and find comfort in what they’re engaging with - and that is especially true of online interactions. By creating content that customers not only like, but trust, you’re creating authentic moments with your consumers online. There is no better way to generate brand loyalty for long term customer success. 

Are you looking to engage with your customers in authentic ways? We’ve put together these four suggestions for your content team to use. 

1. Tell a Story

Nothing connects your audience to your brand quite like a well-told story. Successful stories come in many different forms. Some brands humanize their teams by introducing them to their customers, others share their success and failures, creating a narrative around certain products that consumers love. The one factor that stands out the most from these brands is that they are creating new, playful content around their brand itself

For example, when the eyeglasses giant Warby Parker was creating its brand, it included the common misspellings of its name in its annual report, something most companies don’t report. This led to the brand creating Warby Barker on April Fool’s Day. The site netted 2.5x more traffic than their main domain and drove the three highest consecutive sales dates for the brand to date. The bottom line is, the more fun you’re having with your brand and content, the more engagement you will be able to create with your customers. 

2. Keep Things Light

With the increase in digital activities, there is a continuous need for content teams to keep things light.  If you ask too much of your audience, you risk losing engagement. Think about creating snackable, light content that doesn’t take a lot of time to get through. When you create this content, make sure to still provide customers with the information they want. Make sure you have ways of properly collecting this information. If you create content that resonates, you will be able to create more meaningful moments with your customers.

Consider the type of content you’re creating. Is it aesthetically pleasing? Is it a quick read? 55% of users read articles for 15 seconds or less so you want to make sure you’re using that time wisely. Properly capturing the user's intent is an easy way to do this. For example, Visa made a video explaining the complex issue of fingerprint authentication technology in less than three minutes. By creating more visual and snackable content, such as infographics, breaking up your text with images, or distilling your content down to the most necessary and straightforward information are all ways to make your content a little lighter, and a little easier to consume. 

3. Acknowledge How Customers Are Feeling

Consumer internet consumption is here to stay. With the events of the pandemic, users and businesses alike were thrust into the digital transformation. In December of 2020, more than half of all adults reported the internet as an essential part of their lives, and internet services rose from 40% usage to 100% usage in 2020. But how has that affected the customer journey and the way they’re feeling about what they’re engaging with online? If you’re trying to continue connecting with your audience in meaningful ways, acknowledging the way they’re feeling is a good way to do so. 

You should also consider the tone of your content. The way you leverage language can help you engage your audience on an emotional level. Would your article do better with a little humor and fun? While defining your tone, make sure to capture your brand values.There is a real opportunity to let go of corporate jargon and humanize with your audience about the things they want to talk about, while still maintaining a consistent tone. By engaging at a more human level, you’re building a sense of belonging with your brand, which is something customers want more than ever. 

4. Use Social Media to Connect

After a year and a half of an unexpected and highly disruptive reality, it’s entirely possible that what your customers want has changed. But if you haven’t adjusted your content strategy to allow room for how the pandemic has changed customer needs, then you’re missing a key element. Social media is a powerful channel to discover your customer’s needs. 

Using your social media platforms to truly engage rather than simply sell is a way to start a conversation with your people and ask them what they want and give them the space to give you the right feedback. 74% of customers rely on social media to make their purchasing decisions, but 86% of people say authenticity matters when deciding which brands they like and support. By using social media to make honest and meaningful connections by taking the time to respond to comments, interact with user-generated content, and engaging with your audience, you can organically grow brand loyalty. 

As customers pump the breaks on their screen time, it’s important to reassess how you’re engaging with them online. Make sure you remain as authentic to your customers, brand values and tone as you can. By taking the time to meet your audience where they are, with content that they actually want to see, you’re helping them make the most of their customer journey. 

Find out how Knotch can help your organization better the customer experience. Request a demo here.