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Your Content Marketing Radar: May 31, 2017

Because content marketing trends and best practices shift from day to day, the marketers who want to excel need to know about the news and trends that are shaping the world of content marketing. Check out the five items from this week that will help you stay at the top of your game.

Search results shape perception of your company more than your website

Only roughly 5 percent of the 800+ adults who participated in a recent Lumentus survey trust corporate websites alone when researching a company. On the other hand, nearly 49 percent of respondents said they research companies based on search results only without ever even visiting a website.

For marketers, the implication is obvious: SEO that puts your company in a positive light is of the utmost importance when building a brand reputation.

Approximately 3/4 of those who responded to the survey said they have rejected doing business with an organization because of negative search results. Similarly, three out of every four people claimed that finding a negative search result causes them to look for more negative information.

Teens are more likely to engage with your branded content than young adults

When creating branded content, brands would do well to remember that millennials and Gen Z can’t be lumped into a “young people” demographic and be expected to behave similarly.

According to research just released by Fullscreen, teens are more likely to engage with branded content — including viewing brand photos, liking or sharing branded content, and tagging friends in comments on branded posts — than millennials.

As might be expected, the survey also found that marketers are more likely to reach Gen Z using social and digital channels rather than more traditional marketing platforms. Gen Z spends more than 21 hours per week viewing digital videos or using social media. This is compared to 5 hours playing sports, 7 hours doing homework, and 19 hours watching TV.

Google is testing black links and 10 other search result variations

If your recent Google search looks somewhat different than expected, chalk it up to Google testing the functionality of its search results. In fact in recent days, Google has tested no fewer than 11 (and probably more) variations of search results.

Among the most intriguing tests are those that replace the typical blue links that you are used to seeing with black links. In fact, Google is testing large black URLs as well as small black URLs.

Google is also testing blue bars, icons, colored dots and more. Take a look at this article on Search Engine Land to get a glimpse of all 11 of these tests. Given the amount of research Google does, perhaps there may be some learnings the company permanently applies that you should consider incorporating with the links on your brand sites.

Facebook adds two new features to make live video more effective for marketers

After facing a number of difficulties in recent months due to unethical and illegal behavior being broadcast on Facebook Live, Facebook has seemingly started to de-emphasize live video from personal accounts and is instead looking for ways to help brands and influencers improve the live video experience. Two new updates this week seem to have been made to help move them closer to that goal:

  • Users can now start a live chat with friends during a live video. So, for example, if you talk about a product or service in your live video that you want your potential customers to share with close friends, users now can start private conversations with their friends while watching a live video.
  • Public figures now may invite a second individual to participate in a live video with them. The second individual is shown on a split screen. For anybody who has struggled to make a live video entertaining, adding a second individual might prove to be helpful.

Google’s new tool allows marketers to use GIFs to display data

Marketers who want a new, simple way to display data (either for internal reporting or sharing on external channels) will now be able to use Google’s new data visualization tool.

The tool — which creates a shareable GIF after you enter your data — was introduced to allow marketers and others to tell their stories in simple ways. Google Data Editor Simon Rogers explained on Google’s blog the five steps involved in creating a data GIF.

The steps include:

  1. Enter two data points
  2. Add text
  3. Choose colors
  4. Type explanatory text
  5. Press “Launch Comparisons,” then “Download as Gif.”

That’s it. You also may choose to launch comparisons — but not download the GIF — if you prefer.

Chad Buleen

About Chad

Chad Buleen is an award-winning journalist, the manager of social messaging for a large international nonprofit, a digital media enthusiast and father of four. Follow him on Twitter .

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