Anthony Basile

Content marketing means always producing, always creating, always working on something new. There can be little time to think of the future or ponder the direction the field is going. There’s a side effect that can come from this focus on the present – ideas that you thought were years off can come into being, leaving you scrambling to catch up.

All of a sudden, your customers are treating their mobile devices as their main content viewing platforms. AI isn’t just the villain from “Terminator,” it’s a marketing tool that’s making waves. Jarring shifts in content marketing are coming, and if you’re going to keep pace with them, you have to know what’s going on, why it’s happening and how to master the new status quo.

Don’t worry – you’ve made it this far, and you’ll be able to handle a few more twists and turns. Here are three stories about changing trends and norms in content marketing that you should wrap your head around now.

Google Introduces Relative Mobile Conversion Rate Metric

Smartphones: a place to read content or the place to read content? When you’re busy creating marketing content, you may think about people reading it on a big computer screen. After all, that’s where you’re writing it, editing it, adding the images, agonizing over the punctuation and posting it to your website – but increasingly, people are using their devices for everyday browsing – and your strategy should reflect this fact.

Search Engine Journal recently pointed out that Google has officially introduced a mobile vs. desktop conversion rate metric. This is a great number to keep an eye on if you want to make sure the mobile version of your blog or other content-rich site is doing good business.

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According to Google conversion specialist Lisa Hanson, the mobile version of a site is serviceable if its visitor conversion rate is at 50% of the desktop version. Hanson added that 70% is a good target goal to work toward, with site speed improvements and other optimizations being the best way to build that rate up.

Read Search Engine Journal’s piece here and Google’s original post here for more insights!

What Marketing Executives Need To Know About Adopting AI Technology

Adding a dose of artificial intelligence to your marketing efforts might be a great idea, provided you focus on how this technology really creates value. The Forbes Content Marketing blog recently took a dive into this subject, pointing out that there can be a fine line between using technology effectively and simply picking something up because it sounds trendy and cool. You have to make sure your AI dabbling is on the right side of this line.

The best path for your business may involve forgetting the more flashy uses of AI such as having digital systems interact with your customers and attempt to directly provide them with information or service while they browse your website. After all, the algorithms in use today are best suited to back-office data crunching, and consumers are often hesitant to deal directly with fully digital systems anyway.

You can start your AI journey by using these powerful new tools to analyze and segment your customer base in more intelligent ways, powering decision-making dashboards rather than becoming the face of your company. The actual creation of the marketing materials and the sales conversations that result? Leave those to people for now.

Read more at Forbes.

Debunking BS SEO Lies To Get Found With Stephan Spencer

As content creators move into the future, some of them are constantly performing research, reacting to Google’s latest updates and making changes to their strategies that really matter.

Others are clinging to myths, ideas that either don’t apply anymore or never applied. Stephan Spencer went on the Actionable Marketing Podcast to bust some myths and point out that SEO marketing is a science, and therefore marketers should be following scientific methods. That is to say, they should be performing tests and accepting the results.

What kinds of lies and urban legends has Spencer found content marketers believing? In some cases, he has encountered professionals who will say that meta keywords have really declined in Google tracking importance over the years… but Google never tracked them. He even suggested slipping trick questions into SEO marketer job interviews to make sure hires are up-to-date and don’t believe debunked theories.

Check out the full podcast episode here.

Try to apply these forward-thinking ideas to your own content marketing, then come back to the future next week for the next Content Marketing Weekly!