APAC Marketing Maven Deals Out 4 Top Trends

Marketers must stay engaged with industry developments and learn from the companies that do it best, said Asia Content Marketing Institute co-founder Don Anderson.

Asia Content Marketing Institute co-founder Don Anderson has been monitoring the marketing and media field in the APAC region for 15 years. His advice to marketers: Stay engaged with industry developments and learn from the companies that do it best.

Those that don’t plan risk being left behind.

Here are the top four trends Anderson is keeping his eyes on right now.

1. Ask About Ad Blocking

Ad blocking involves the obstruction of advertising content within a Web page on both desktop and mobile browsers; it is enabled by third-party browser extensions. While not a new phenomenon, Anderson said ad blocking has become a hot topic due to increased takeup among Millennials. Global Web Index recently reported 27% of APAC Internet users are using some form of the technology.

Perspectives differ about whether ad blocking poses a serious threat to marketers, Anderson said. “There’s varying views on this, with some suggesting it will reach a ceiling in terms of use,” he told CMO.com. “More publishers are trying desperately to convince audiences to suspend their use of ad blockers, and brand marketers should similarly sit up and express concern.”

Anderson’s advice: “Marketers need to look to their agencies for reassurance on the ad-blocking trend and be brave enough to ask the tough questions.”

2. Get Your Content Marketing Strategy Right

While experts have different definitions for content marketing, Anderson said they all agree that the end product is “information that demonstrates relevance to the intended audience and helps drive leads and/or conversion.”

The emphasis here is on relevance. The content itself can come in a number of ways–such as video, podcasts, and short and long-form blogs on social channels and branded platforms–but it has to earn the right to take up your intended audience’s time and add value to their lives.

Anderson’s advice: “Marketers should adopt the association’s “Six Pillars of Content Marketing” framework: ideation, strategy, creation, distribution, amplification, and optimisation. This framework will increase the likelihood of reaching audiences and and realising the desired ROI.”

3. Beware Of Robotic Algorithms

Robotic algorithms are programs that enable the creation of automated and data-driven content. While they may seem to add value and save costs by automating the creative process, Anderson questioned whether the concept is sustainable for businesses and publishers. “It may suit certain situations, but content that truly resonates demonstrates a sense of humanness,” he said.

Anderson’s advice: “In this era of social sharing, brands more than ever need to come across as more human. I’m not convinced using bots to drive the narrative is beneficial for the industry, but advances in artificial intelligent systems may make them hard to ignore. Tread carefully.”

4. Decide Which Channel To Use

Advances in technology have made blogging and podcasting pillars of the content marketing era. Platforms such as LinkedIn have achieved great success by providing a venue for businesses and professionals to share thought leadership content, spurring a continuous flow of education and inspiration. At the other end of the spectrum, Instagram is transforming the creation and distribution of short-form video content and images, while virtual reality, augmented realty, and 360-degree video could take the industry to a new immersive level.

Anderson’s advice: “Beyond platforms and new technologies, marketers are concerned about where to increase their content marketing. From that, the industry should anticipate a new wave of ‘content tech’ to flood the market.”