Content rules digital media. Everything we watch, read, talk about, and engage with is tied to content. Savvy marketers know this and use it to their advantage.
Experienced marketers also know that, if you want to attract audience attention, you need to leverage a comprehensive content marketing strategy. Simply producing static text is not enough anymore. One of the best ways to boost your content marketing strategy is to use interactive content, which can help increase generation and, in turn, revenue.
Read on for an overview of interactive content and some tips on how to use interactive assets to generate more ROI for your business.
What Is the Relevance of Interactive Content Today?
“Interactive content” refers to any asset that not only informs or entertains but also requires some kind of action from its users.
In this way, interactive content encourages engagement from the start. This is the key to its success, making it an invaluable strategy for marketers searching for ways to engage customers using digital channels.
A study from Microsoft points out that the average attention span of consumers is about eight seconds. This isn’t great news for marketers, as eight seconds is not long enough for a specific message to sink in.
Interactive content helps to solve this dilemma.
A survey conducted by Content Marketing Institute and Ion Interactive shows that 46% of content marketers believe interactive content retains reader attention more than static content. Similarly, 77% of these surveyed professionals report that interactive content increases user visits, which can lead to a higher level of loyalty between a brand and its readers.
Since demand generation resides at the top of the sales funnel (in which prospects first become conscious of a product or service), they know that visibility is improved when buyers are enticed into taking that first step toward brand awareness. The above statistics strongly suggest that interactivity is a crucial component in getting your voice heard and your foot through the door.
What Kinds of Content Can Be Used?
Keep in mind that when it comes to interactive content, there will always be different kinds of formats, assets, and goals in play.
We’ve listed some of the most effective types of content below in order to help you get better acquainted:
Infographics inform their audience using visuals.
When an infographic is interactive, it can add a sense of exploration and personalization to the content—making it more interesting and creates a lasting impression on your customer.
The CMI/Ion Interactive study indicates this format had the highest growth in usage from 2016 to 2017. Participants also noted that interactive infographics have an effectiveness rate of up to 58%.
Quizzes are a series of questions about a specific topic and can be highly shareable, as companies like Buzzfeed have demonstrated. For example, Buzzfeed’s “What City Should You Actually Live In?” quiz has gathered more than 22 million views and more than 25 million likes on Facebook. This kind of engagement is priceless for any marketer hoping to draw in customers to engage with their brand.
Lookbooks are collections of photos and other images that, together, convey a style or an idea.
Lookbooks also have an “exploration effect” on users and are helpful for attracting buyer personas whose tastes are more visual. With a similar appeal as infographics, interactive lookbooks are excellent for attracting buyers into the funnel and helping them become more familiar with your product or service.
These are just three of the most common forms of interactive content, but there are many others, including calculators, whitepapers, landing pages, and even advergames.
How Can You Generate Revenue with Interactive Content?
Now that you have a broader sense of the importance of interactive content for marketers, let’s provide you with some of the steps necessary to creating a superior interactive content strategy.
1. Have a plan
You probably have this part covered, but we can’t stress it enough: Marketing is always better with a plan, and an interactive approach is one of those strategies that needs plenty of infrastructure if it’s going to work well.
Planning for interaction is a predictions game. You have to understand user expectations and what these expectations mean for potential engagement. Ask yourself: What will prospects look for? What will frustrate them? What will catch their eye?
Following these next steps will help you formulate a detailed strategy that’ll be ready to execute in no time.
2. Know your audience
As with any other strategy, the best way to integrate interactive content into your content strategy is by fully understanding buyer personas. There are many ways to interact with content, and your task is to uncover which method resonates with your audience the most.
For example, quizzes are extremely useful for a more casual public that likes sharing interesting items on social media. On the other hand, infographics are more appealing to people who like to learn and discover independently. Similarly, lookbooks are likely to appeal to audience members that are more visually stimulated, while whitepapers might be best for users whose style is more verbal.
Your job here is to find the perfect match between the right content and buyers, as well as the perfect match between your content and its corresponding stage in the buyer’s journey, from awareness to purchase.
3. Know what you want your audience to do
You have to know what your leads want in order to get them to engage with your brand. But what exactly will help to grab their attention? What will compel them to take the steps to get from interest to purchase?
Engaging with interactive content simply isn’t enough. When developing impactful interactive content, you need to have a definable goal in mind. Think about how you’d like your users to behave after consuming each piece of content. Do you want leads to give you more information about themselves or share your content on social media? Each end goal requires a different approach, you should carefully consider your answers to these questions before crafting your assets.
4. Offer the right rewards
Rewards are a great way to convince people to interact with your content. Think of a reward as the equivalent of an invitation to a business party; you need to invite guests in before you can start pitching your idea. In marketing, a reward is a way to get your prospects “in.”
Coupons and rich material such as exclusive eBooks are just a few examples of rewards that bring in results. Just be sure that whatever you offer your prospect is something that demonstrates real value to their relevant buyer persona.
5. Have good metrics on hand
Interactive content can yield in-depth metrics that take you far beyond the typical breakdown of view counts or links clicked. These additional metrics include completion rate, user responses, and even scroll depth.
Try to find the right KPIs for every asset (as well as for your product or service) and make it part of your regular procedure to track and trace them when you can. Your findings should then be used to inform your next content campaign, and your messaging should be fine-tuned according to which assets are working and which ones are falling short.
6. Use the right tools
Great interactive content is compelling, attractive, and fun. Your team can always create such content by themselves, but there are also specialized tools to offer a little help.
Various platforms and services can simplify the execution of interactive content and facilitate easy reporting on engagement metrics and asset performance. Highspot, for example, can help you track the usage of content to see which assets sellers prefer, engage prospects most often, and move buyers effectively through the buyer’s journey. Armed with these analytics, marketers are able to optimize their content strategy on a consistent basis by expanding what works and reconfiguring what doesn’t.
This streamlined way of producing and dispersing content is becoming more and more important by the day. If a sea of content is flooding the internet as a result of COVID-19, your assets — backed by analytics and crafted with care — can serve as a lighthouse.
Generating revenue with interactive content is all about having a solid plan, building an extensive knowledge of your buyer personas, and creating the right pieces of content for your arsenal.