Creating and publishing emotional, engaging content continues to be one of the hottest trends for marketers going into 2016. The ANA’s Ask-the-Expert research team has received a steady stream of questions about content marketing over the last five years.

“For us, it’s been a steady drum beat,” says researcher Wendy Ball. “Perennial questions have been, ‘What are the trends and best practices for how companies and brands are using content to engage customers and prospects?’ Of late, questions concern more about the ‘how’ and less about the ‘why’. As more marketers implement content marketing programs, they want to know how to measure the effectiveness of content marketing, how to increase results and how to run an efficient operation -- for example, how to create a content editorial calendar.”

Top 10 List of 2016 Buzzwords and Expectations

Association of National Advertisers 1.14.16

Looking Ahead at the Top 10 Marketing Trends for 2016

  1. More brands are becoming content creators. Content marketing is moving up the corporate agenda in 2016. Native is expanding across platforms, and companies are utilizing both in-house and external content teams.
  2. Marketing is moving to the C-Suite. More CMOs will become CEOs in 2016. It’s happening outside the United States more than inside the U.S.
  3. Ad blocking software will present a challenge. To adapt to the rise in ad blocking software, marketers will begin moving to create more relevant content and frictionless experiences.

Virtual reality will move from gimmick to gamechanger. VR presents a way for brands to create experiences, taking consumers almost physically out of their location and putting them in a new world. The creative possibilities are endless. Hiking boot brand Merrell partnered with Oculus Rift to create the Merrell Trailscape at Sundance in 2015, a virtual reality journey that made people feel like they were hiking high in the mountains.

Skeptics argue that virtual reality won’t scale because people won’t buy VR devices. But now smartphones give people access to an iteration of VR called 360 video. The increasing convenience of consumer access to VR puts the onus on brands to provide content worth engaging with. Virtual reality can amplify powerful stories and provide consumers with valuable experiences.

Creativity and Technology

Association of National Advertisers 9.30.15

During Advertising Week, Lorraine Twohill of Google and David Droga of Droga5 sat down to have a conversation about the intersection between creativity and technology. Here’s what they had to say.

On Google’s New Logo

Twohill: “We always thought our logo was beautiful, but it was designed for a desktop era. We needed to refresh it and evolve it; we needed a smaller icon we could use in more places…we were creating a visual language to bring to all of our products.”

Five Ways to Reach Hispanic Marketing 2.0

Association of National Advertisers 9.17.15

  1. Move away from the data to think about the people and the culture. “With multicultural consumers often we focus on the data instead of asking how they grew up and what was important to them,” says Hincapie. People have more than one identity, and the understanding of what it means to be Hispanic is changing.
  2. Talk to Hispanic consumers, not at them. Heineken is not a Caribbean product, but it is a badge brand for the Caribbean community. So Heineken finds ways to talk authentically to Caribbean consumers without pretending that it’s a Caribbean brand.

Multicultural Priorities in the C-Suite

Association of National Advertisers 9.17.15

Geoscape provides market intelligence including data, systems, research, and analytics for companies seeking growth in a culturally diverse economy. Cesar Melgoza, Founder and CEO, presented the results of a study from the first quarter of 2015. Geoscape asked 150 senior marketing leaders key questions about multicultural priorities.

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