Interactive Content Is King
With more than three quarters of both B2B and B2C marketers practicing content marketing, it has become a fundamental element to most online marketing strategies today. However, with more and more content being produced and published regularly, competition has become fierce, which forces businesses to become more creative in their content endeavors. That is where interactive content comes in: content that gets the audience involved, creating a more personalized and memorable experience. In this blog, I will explain what interactive content is, I will give examples of interactive content, I will explain how to use it effectively and I will show the performance differences between passive and interactive content. After reading this blog post, you will know how you can best use interactive content for your company!
What Is Interactive Content?
Arnie Kuenn describes interactive content as content that “allows users to engage with a business or brand on a deeper level. Instead of just downloading a piece of content from a website and ending the engagement there, interactive content prompts users to share personal preferences and data in order to receive some sort of tailored result.”
This additional engagement is great for both users and businesses. Not only does interactive content offer an atypical user experience compared with most content marketing initiatives involving a registration and download page, the personalized results received are often more valuable than a generic content download.
Brand loyalty and trust
This higher-quality deliverable can help build brand loyalty and trust, resulting in stronger vendor and customer relationships. Similarly, interactive content provides businesses with useful data, as companies are able to capture more insight from it than typical gated content assets. Instead of just receiving personal contact information that a registration page would provide, interactive content exposes demographic information, pain points and challenges. Businesses can then use the information that users enter to understand their audience better and employ the findings for future marketing initiatives.
Types of Interactive Content
- Assessments & Personality Tests
- Knowledge Tests & Quizzes
- Polls & Surveys
- Interactive White Paper
- Interactive Infographic
- Contests & Sweepstakes
- Interactive Video Marketing
- Reveal-Based Marketing
Using Interactive Content Successfully
According to Arnie Kuenn, while most businesses that practice content marketing today require users to fill out a contact form before downloading an asset, interactive content works best with a slightly different approach.
Gating content behind a registration page is one way to get leads — but it also stops some users in their tracks. Unfortunately, a lot of the content for which businesses require a user to register is not worth it, and users are becoming wearier of providing their information.
Instead of taking the registration-page approach with interactive content, consider using a “freemium” model. Allow users to take a quiz, use a calculator or interact with a whitepaper or infographic without asking for anything in return — yet.
By doing this, you build trust and credibility with the audience, which are both extremely important elements of content marketing. Once users have had a taste of what your interactive content can provide, offer an elective upgrade in exchange for personal/contact information.
Boosting Education, Differentiation, Sharing & Conversion
The analyst firm Demand Metric recently produced a research report, Enhancing the Buyer’s Journey, that examined the performance differences that 185 B2B and B2C marketers were having with passive vs. interactive content.
They surveyed a cross-section of marketers from different industries and business sizes on the relative success of their content marketing tactics. Twenty-five percent (25%) of the participants reported that they were using interactive content to some degree — enough to provide statistical significance in a segmented analysis that compared their performance with their peers who were relying on passive content.
There were four objectives of content marketing for which the study asked these marketers to rate their performance:
- Educating prospects
- Differentiating the company
- Producing “conversions” (leads or sales)
- Generating “shares” on social media
On all four of these dimensions, the interactive group outperformed the passive one:
- 93% of the interactive group reported their content was somewhat effective or very effective in educating buyers, versus 70% for the passive group.
- 88% of the interactive group reported their content was somewhat effective or very effective in differentiating against competitors, versus 55% for the passive group.
- 70% of the interactive group reported their content produced conversions moderately well or very well, versus 36% for the passive group.
- 38% of the interactive group reported their content was shared frequently or very frequently, versus 17% for the passive group.
For more elaboration on and graphs from this study, please read Scott Brinker’s article Interactive Content: The Successor of the Landing Page.
What can I do for you regarding interactive content?
As with any other form of content, it needs to reach a big audience. Keeping your content in one language is a barrier to that. The more languages you have your content available in, the more people can or want to read it and even interact with it. I am the owner of Dutch translation agency BudgetVertalingOnline, which offers affordable translations English <> Dutch. Therefore, I can help you if you want to reach foreign prospects and clients in their own language. Want to get in touch? Send me an email (email@example.com), send me a Tweet (@GdenHolder) or fill out the quotation form.
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