When Demand Gen Report issued The 2018 Content Preferences Survey Report, 81% of respondents said they wanted more interactive content that they can access on demand.
Most of us are certainly aware of the need to create effective interactive content. But how confident are you that you know how to do it? Content4Demand produces interactive assets every day, and we’ve got six tips to help you step up your interactive game.
Do It With a Purpose
Choose your formats strategically. Just slapping animations into any old asset doesn’t make it engaging. Assess your asset honestly and determine whether interactivity adds to the story you’re trying to tell. The best candidates for interactivity are those where:
- Interactivity will help tell the story or demonstrate a process.
- No other format will tell the story more effectively.
- You have the time and budget to do it well.
Remember that your goal is to deliver valuable information to help buyers make a decision. Choose the format that will best lead you toward that goal. As with any other asset, consider where your interactive piece fits within your content marketing strategy. Map out a mix of static and interactive content with clearly defined goals.
Take a Measured Approach
One of the great benefits of interactive formats is their ability to deliver metrics that show how much readers engaged with your piece, and which sections got the most action. To take advantage of these valuable metrics, you’ll want to determine upfront how you’ll measure success. What do you care most about — click-throughs or shares? Number of views or number of completed gate forms?
Determining these things in advance will help your designers to drive the impact you’re after. If the call to action is the most important element, move it up in the layout and make sure it pops. Design the asset based on your goals.
Team Up for Success
The experts who will design and code your piece should be involved as early as possible in the planning process. They’ll want answers to such questions as:
- Where will the asset be hosted, on our website or on a third-party platform?
- Will we host it ourselves, or will an agency host it? What will that cost?
- How frequently will the content need to be updated? Who will be responsible?
- Will we gate the asset with a lead-gen form? What information must we collect?
- How do we plan to distribute this?
- How important is it to be mobile responsive? What devices will most users view it on?
Interactive content is much more easily and cost-effectively updated than pdfs or printed files. Keep an eye on the links, the content itself and the call to action to make sure everything stays current as long as the asset is being accessed.
Check Your Phone (and Tablet)
While the majority of B2B buyers still access content from a computer, there’s a growing contingent of mobile content viewers that you’ll want to consider. According to recent The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) research sponsored by Google, 50% of B2B search queries today are made on smartphones — and BCG expects that figure to grow to 70% by 2020.
Lay out your asset in a way that translates fluidly to create seamless navigation and an attractive interface on any device. And make sure that those important calls to action and other priorities you identified in the planning process are still the most visible components of the design, whether it’s viewed on a laptop, a tablet, a smartphone or a desktop computer.
Play to Your Crowd
Just because interactive content continues to grow in popularity doesn’t mean your buyers always prefer it in every stage of the buyer’s journey. Also consider that some industries are more conservative than others and may be resistant to anything that feels too lighthearted or flashy.
Detailed, current personas are the best way to predict what your clients and prospects will respond to best. Still, content preferences continue to evolve, so continuous testing is a great way to keep up with your buyers’ changing interests.
Take Smart Shortcuts
You don’t always need to work from the ground up. Peruse your content library for some foundational assets that have performed well for you in the past, and assess whether they’ll translate well into an interactive format. Interactivity can appeal to a different set of viewers, and provide you a way to bring case studies and e-books to life.
If you’d like to learn more about how interactive content fits into today’s B2B content mix, download Demand Gen Report’s 2019 State of Interactive Content Marketing for a discussion about the benefits of interactive content marketing, how companies are succeeding with interactive assessments, best practices for developing interactive content, and more.
If you need a partner with experience creating effective, engaging interactive content, Content4Demand is here to help. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions.
Holly Celeste Fisk is an accomplished marketing pro with 20+ years of experience in B2B and B2C. She’s responsible for Content4Demand’s internal marketing efforts, managing everything from content creation and email marketing to events and sponsorships, blog publishing, website management and social media presence. When she’s not working, you’ll find her sliding into third at softball, buried in a book or practicing her Italian.