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What is a content vertical?

1. Vertical content is visual content users consume in a vertical position.

2. It emerged from the need to create a communication means that was more suitable for mobile interactions.

3. Visual content represents a shift from desktop to mobile.

It can seem like content marketing is changing too fast for us to keep up with. Content creation in 2020 is distinctly different from the trends of yesteryear. The extent to which conversation is perceived as “natural” will depend on the industry and subject as well as specific writing techniques, blog writing tips, and new content marketing trends, which we’ll share in this article. 

New Content Marketing Trends: Media and Industry Considerations 

Determining how to keep your conversation natural across verticals starts with realistic expectations. In other words, what do you believe your content can achieve in your niche? Video is critical to 2020 content. For example, your YouTube videos could get views years after being uploaded. You can’t say that for social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

An analysis of 340 Fractl content marketing campaigns was carried out to analyze which factors helped create the most successful content. The campaigns were categorized into travel, education, health and fitness, science, technology, drugs and alcohol, sex and relationships, sports, and a few other verticals.

The analyst team then looked at social media shares and placements, or any time the campaign was written about, for each vertical. Placements could mean a do-follow link, a no-follow link, or co-citation. They analyzed content features like formatting and visual asset type.

2020 Content: The Triumph of General Over Niche

On average, campaigns got around 12,000 shares and 90 placements. General verticals like Travel and Health and Fitness did much better than niche ones like Automotive. Health and Fitness got just under 63,600 shares and 200 placements on average, while Automotive got only 1,650 shares and 43 placements.

The Drugs and Alcohol verticals were almost 1.5 times more likely to have interactive elements and more than twice as likely to use curated data as the average campaign. This shows one doesn’t necessarily need to gather new data to make an impression when dealing with a controversial and emotional topic. Publishers and readers value visual representation that can explain complicated data in a simple way.

One example of this approach was the campaign “Pathways to Addiction,” which made it possible to explore information from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health through interactive platforms, including information about the order in which users would consume different substances.

Health and Fitness vertical campaigns were almost ten times more likely to include images side by side compared to the campaign average. Body image issues were at the heart of many of these image campaigns. The researchers photoshopped images of female video game characters to resemble average American women more. This approach was used to draw attention to differences in beauty standards across the globe.

Content Writing in 2020: Successful Content Marketing Regardless of the Vertical

The team concluded that contrasting images deliver a wealth of data that can otherwise be hard to communicate by means of graphs, charts, and other standard data visualizations, not to mention the powerful emotional weight they carry.

The three general verticals described above may be ripe for successful content writing in 2020, but are niche verticals doomed to mediocre performance? Of course not. You can create well-performing content even on topics that will not attract readers’ attention so easily. This is particularly the case when campaigns tell a unique story or relate to trending stories.

Note this won’t come easy. Creating a successful piece of content takes anywhere from five to ten attempts. Here’s how to maximize your chances.

Blog writing tips for 2020: Write Longer Posts

If you’re writing 250-word posts, it will be very challenging to make your content unique, if it is at all possible. To present an opinion and analyze different aspects of issues and topics, you simply need more text. Try your hardest to write longer posts. According to Backlinko data, the average length of content on the first page of Google is 1,890 words. This shows search engines, and users alike appreciate high-quality articles, which is more difficult to achieve in fewer than 500 words.

Use common, simple language with shorter sentences and lots of transition words to create actionable content. This will help keep the tone natural and conversational. Do not leave room for misunderstanding and confusion. In the online content world, the word limit per sentence is 20 words. Anything over that is too many.

Content Creation in 2020 Broken Down by Industry

In this section, we offer content and blog writing tips according to industry or sector. We’ve covered business and finance, education, fashion, health, sex and relationships, and other major industries.  

Business and Finance

Business and finance content should rely on rankings or comparisons because people want to know how they measure up when it comes to money. This is the best way to go if you’re looking for social shares.

Automotive

Use data from social media if you want to create widely appealing automotive content. Statistics show that over 50% of campaigns in this vertical feature social network data.

Education and Fashion

The best education campaigns have interactive features and social media data, while successful fashion campaigns are aimed at resolving readers’ problems. Most often, this content comes in the form of tips and tricks. 

Legal Content

Content for legal firms that includes useful data and facts and can offer an answer to a preliminary inquiry will position your establishment as an authority on a given matter, helping forge trust and attract new clients. Of course, even the best legal content cannot (and should not) replace an actual consultation.

Entertainment

When it comes to entertainment, timeliness is key. References to trending content connected to a base of passionate fans spells success.

Health and Fitness

This vertical shows side-by-side images with a strong contrast to be very successful.

Pets

The most successful campaigns in this vertical focus on pet ownership’s social aspects. It helps to include new, interesting information such as regional differences within a certain breed of dogs or cats.

Home and Garden

Content in this niche should be related to pop culture or trends in order to attract readers’ attention. The focus could also be on practical gardening, landscaping, or other relevant tips.

Crime and Safety

The best-performing content (by social shares) in this sector explores trending topics using social media data.

Sex and Relationships

This topic isn’t short on controversy. The most successful 2020 content campaigns so far have used social media data to measure the conversation around it.

Science

To boost the social appeal of dry scientific content, it will help to relate complicated topics to superheroes or famous inventors and create interactive platforms. These will make it easier for your readers to connect with your content.

Content Writing Tips for 2020: What Makes Long-form Content Successful?

There are several universally valid aspects of successful long-form content. One of these is short URLs using the main keyword. These communicate the essence of your page to readers. MarketingSherpa found that long URLs received 2.5 times fewer clicks than short ones. Short URLs also rank better in SERP (search engine results pages).

When we talk about new content marketing trends, the most important thing to remember is reader value. Content can be useful without being dry. Analysis by CoSchedule shows that headlines containing emotion-tinged words get much more shares on social media. There is a direct link between the number of emotional words in the headline and the likelihood of the content being shared more than 1,000 times.

Examples of such words are “delighted, a cut above, devastating, mind-numbing, eager, euphoric, and exhilarated.” We also recommend using words with an air of exclusivity, such as “banned” or “behind the scenes” and words creating a sense of urgency, like “act now, deadline, instant, before, closing soon, and hurry.”

While the headline is always the place to start when you set out to write a blog, it should never be rushed or treated like an annoying obligation. The headline merits special attention and treatment because four-fifths of readers never make it past it. Normally, a visitor to a site will not want to read a post if the headline is not attention-grabbing and compelling. You need to make every effort to think of an impactful, succulent headline.

How to Write a Blog in 2020: Tips and Tricks 

Studies indicate that content design costs 62% less than conventional marketing and generates over 300% more leads. What is more, this is not the only content marketing benefit. It increases engagement according to more than 70% of marketers, and those who prioritize blogging efforts are 13 times more likely to see returns on their investment. Small businesses without blogs get a 126% higher lead growth than small businesses without blogs. 

Do Research

Don’t rush into writing; your text isn’t going to sound natural if you do. Do your research and find out everything you can about your subject. Start with a simple analysis of your readers.

The purpose here is to create a realistic reader profile using a certain set of traits. These include gender, location, age, and other demographic characteristics, marital status or relationship status, annual income level, and education level. Values, personal interests, and beliefs could be taken into account, as should online habits and behavior where possible.

Your subject is always important. Use Google Alerts to follow the subject over a longer period of time if your focus has been on a very specific topic long-term. That way, you will have sufficient data available to you on the topic and write a naturally flowing, informative, and high-value blog article.

Content Writing in 2020: Reusing Content

Try as we might, we just can’t come up with original content sometimes. A study shows that just under a third of leading marketers curate and repurpose content regularly. We recommend following in their footsteps. Feel free to reuse quality articles that worked well with your readers. Freshen them up by adding new data, statistics, and images. They will stay relevant and offer value. 

How to Choose the Best Keywords

93% of all traffic comes from search engines, so keyword strategy should never be underestimated. Choosing and using the best keywords in your blog articles is the only surefire way to improve your search engine ranking. There are a few ways to go about this, but relying on professional keyword research tools is the fastest and most optimal solution. An example of one is Google Keyword Planner, which can help you identify the finest search phrases and terms. There are many other highly reliable platforms on the internet. Ideally, the density of your main keyword should range from 1.2 to 2.5.

2020 Content and Social Media

The term “social media” lends automatic associations with Facebook and Twitter, but these are far from the only options. There are many more platforms and networks out there. As we mentioned at the beginning, platforms like YouTube shouldn’t be underestimated, as your videos will get months or years of views. The key is knowing where you can connect with your audiences. Are they looking for a new job on LinkedIn? Following the gossip on Twitter? Chatting to friends on Facebook? Uploading their favorite images to Pinterest?

Next Steps

The right content marketing partner can help you retain complete control of your conversation across content verticals and social media. The approach should always be tailored to your own unique objectives and business challenges. When it comes to new content marketing trends the ways in which individuals and companies use social media, and other marketing approaches differ a great deal. An experienced, professional content marketing partner will be there to help you find the right style and tone, making sure your voice is heard exactly the way you want it to be.