Content predictions for 2014: the views of Coca-Cola, Facebook and others

Real-time marketing, mobile and TV-length online films will be some of the trends that dominate content marketing in 2014, according to a panel of experts.

Online content: marketers predict next year's trends
Online content: marketers predict next year's trends

Ahead of Wednesday's International Content Marketing Summit, the CMA (Content Marketing Association) asked speakers from companies ranging from Vice to The Economist for their predictions of next year's trends.

Jonathan Mildenhall, senior vice presicent of marketing communcation and design, Coca-ColaJonathan Mildenhall, senior vice president of marketing communication and design, Coca-Cola

"For The Coca-Cola Company the major trend in terms of content marketing will be the move towards real-time marketing.

"We now have the technological ability to respond to the cultural context as and when it is happening.

"We will see much more topical content that engages with consumers daily.

"We have started to recruit conversation managers, coders, creators, photographers and film makers into our marketing teams so that we can develop content that is both agile and excellent.

"The benefit for consumers is fresh and topical in content and conversation. The benefit for our brands is the same.

"The challenge is to ensure that all this real-time content is relevant, entertaining and shareable. The creative message will remain king."

Alastair Cotterill, creative strategist, FacebookAlastair Cotterill, creative strategist, Facebook

"I think the main trend will be the continued shift to people accessing the internet on their mobile phones.

"For most brands this will provide opportunities for brand building through content that is discovered and consumed on social/content discovery platforms.

"This will mean designing content that is consumed in-feed within these apps rather than trying to push people to branded destinations.

"As connectivity, device and app design continues to improve we'll see a shift towards this being video content and we'll see more investment in the quality of content coming from brands, effective distribution of it and the measurement of it's impact."

Nick Blunden, global head of digital and content strategy, The Economist

"Although it is tempting to see the recent changes in the way people consume content as a simple linear journey from analogue to digital, in reality we are actually seeing more of a shift from single channel to multi-channel media experiences.

"This creates a significant challenge for brands to engage their audiences across a variety of analogue and digital touchpoints and also the opportunity to create unique transmedia brand stories that create true differentiation."

Guy Daniels, vice president of brand and marketing communications for international business, Fujitsu 

"I see two opposite trends. One is towards content that is developed, owned and exchanged by highly specialised communities who will self-govern and self-correct based on what works best in the community.

"This content will resist the influential commercial enterprises. The opposite trend is towards content that gets everyone’s attention more quickly and more directly than ever before – typically this content is cultural or political and demands rapid response."

Carrie Tyler, head of editorial, Neverunderdressed.comCarrie Tyler, head of editorial,

"Fashion media is in crisis. The principles of the old monthly glossy magazine need to be ripped up and reworked for the modern digital age, the speed it necessitates and the increased volume of clothes and beauty products hitting stores."

Matt O’Mara, managing director, Vice UK

"It's never been a better time to be a content creator. For Vice, our content has always been about telling original and compelling stories. Twenty years ago that content lived in our magazine, but over the past seven years we've evolved into a digital media company, with the lion's share of the business centred around creating online video.

"Where we've been particularly successful is with our longer form documentaries - especially through our network of YouTube channels where our engagement rate is exceptional, which dispels the myth that social content is short form. If it's good enough, people will watch it and they will share it regardless of length. 

"Looking ahead, increased bandwidth means audiences will increasingly be consuming TV-length content online or through their mobile, tablets or even watches.

"Coupled with the huge surge toward mobile consumption, it is a hugely exciting time, especially with an eye on emerging markets like China and India."

Nick Cohen, managing partner and head of content, MediacomNick Cohen, managing partner and head of content, Mediacom

"The biggest trend we are seeing at the moment in the media industry can be best characterised as ever greater inter-connection.

"Whether that’s consumers becoming more connected as their lives are lived through an ever greater variety of platforms and devices, media becoming more connected as it evolves its planning processes to adapt to that new reality, or the economics of the industry becoming more connected, with new kinds of content partnerships being formed between brands, agencies, media owners and rights holders.

"Looking ahead into 2014 we believe that navigating that world and building the right connections will be the key to success."

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