Here’s a warning for firms that produce white papers and other forms of static content.
Give it up. The time has come to provide more engaging material, judging by the Embrace Of Immersive Content, a study by Ceros.
Of the executives polled, 90% agree that content designed to create an experience performs better. And 81% wish their company published more interactive and immersive content.
However, the latter statistic “makes me cringe!” states Alex Kelly, director of digital marketing at Ceros, who led the survey.
Clearly, companies are not there yet: they describe 56% of their content as static and only 33% as interactive.
The top three hurdles are securing budget (52%), lack of in-house skills (36%) and getting leadership buy-in (23%).
Over half say their firm produces too many PDFs. And a third think their company’s content is boring.
The study defines immersive content as “words, charts, data visualizations, quizzes, et al. — content that a reader interacts with or experiences, rather than merely reads passively, as they would static pieces of content such as PDF or white papers.”
That’s the whole premise behind email videos and various forms of interactive content enabled by AMP (accelerated mobile pages) for email.
AMP is an open-source framework designed to make mobile pages load faster. Extended to email, it leads to “more engaging, interactive, and actionable email experiences,” Google says.
Some brands have gotten the message. Those who describe themselves as “very effective marketers are 200% more likely to use data visualization and 200% more likely to create games. And they’re significantly less likely to publish e-books.
It depends on the culture, with 85% who say that their marketing team values creativity, and 44% strongly so. And 55% agree their teams highly value good design, whereas 43% say it is only moderately valued.
In the end, only 16% say they are very near the ideal.
Traditionalists may deplore the move toward immersive content. Even historians must entertain people above all else. Serious topics take on a storybook quality — it’s almost as if readers lack the attention spans to handle more complex forms of information. But not everything can be dramatic or amusing.
That said, people also have to be able to read the material. While quite dynamic, the study provided by Ceros contains some revolving charts that barely give us time to digest the numbers.
Well, you have to roll with the times, no matter how tough it is.
“The biggest learning from this report is that today’s marketers know and understand the value of immersive content, but struggle to put a strategy in play because they don’t have the proper tools, resources, or internal buy-in,” Kelly states
Kelly adds that “it’s up to the leadership teams to empower marketers and designers with the resources and creative freedom they need to burn those barriers.”
Ceros surveyed over 1,000 marketing, PR and design professionals, with 40% in B2B and 43% in B2C.