Content creation is both a challenge and a top priority
By Freja Nilsson
To continuously provide relevant, updated and interesting content is something that many companies struggle with. This is confirmed in our yearly Web Management Survey, where we ask communication professionals working with corporate communication about which content-related challenges they foresee will be the biggest this year.
The expectations of stakeholders across different target groups are becoming higher, and companies struggle to create engaging content that reaches the right target audience. The amount of content every individual comes across daily and is expected to engage with is ever-increasing, resulting in people quickly ignoring messages they think aren't meant for them. The respondents of this year's Web Management Survey confirms that companies find it challenging to produce tailored and engaging content for their stakeholder groups.
The survey shows that generating engaging and targeted corporate communication content is a challenge for different stakeholders, which encompasses the entire value chain within corporate communication. Primarily the challenges are challenging both in terms of the expected amount and quality of produced content, but also across different target groups.
Communication professionals working with corporate communication face great expectations from stakeholders across different target groups. Often this is seen as a great challenge because no party has the same wishes or needs for content as another, for example, if we talk about customers, shareholders or employees. The impressions we get from this year's survey is that companies struggle to create relevant and engaging content that targets everyone appropriately.
We also asked which topics, tools and channels they will prioritise in 2022. The survey shows that many will continue to prioritise the corporate website, press releases and advertising on LinkedIn.
Challenges and priorities
When we asked the communications professionals which digital communication areas they will prioritise in 2022, most will focus on content in digital channels, followed by corporate social media and user experience. It is no surprise that two of the most prioritised areas are content-related, given that stakeholders' expectations on companies' communication in all channels are continuously increasing .
In our article 2022 corporate communication trends, our content strategist Lorraine S. Green predicted that many companies would focus on qualitative and audience adapted content.
“Working with content has been on the agenda for quite some time now. A lot of effort is put into every step of what is needed to ensure a consistent flow of qualitative, audience adapted content. It can be in-depth knowledge about the audiences, content strategies, brand guidelines, tone of voice documents, measurement plans, governance models, and the list goes on. To keep sane in 2022, we see many in need of sorting, compiling and turning all this good work into a logical work order and tangible processes and tools. Hello Content Frameworks!”.
The same themes of audience-adapted and relevant content are mentioned in our survey as something that companies struggle with and will prioritise this year. Some of the respondents of the survey listed these short-term challenges they expect this year:
- "Tailor content for all relevant stakeholders and create relevant customer journey's for each respective target audience.
- "Constantly evolving and changing so our content remains relevant and "new" for our audiences."
- "Fine-tuning the content to increase engagement across all channels."
It is common for companies to have many different stakeholder groups with different needs and expectations, and creating tailored content for them is not easy. To keep engagement rates up, the content also needs to be captivating and adapted to each target group's needs and interests. Read more about how you can stay relevant to your corporate website audiences.
Content types and channels
When it comes to which channels the companies will prioritise when it comes to content, we see that the corporate website continues to be a top priority, followed by press releases and LinkedIn. We also see that 45% of the respondents of the survey say that they use sponsored posts on LinkedIn to reach their target audiences.
So far, we have concluded that creating relevant and engaging content is of high importance, but which topics will the content cover?
This year, sustainability is a high priority, which goes hand in hand with increasing stakeholder expectations and sustainability issues being the top agenda in the societal debate. Companies will also focus on creating content related to investor relations and corporate storytelling.
Corporate storytelling is also something that we see has gained increased importance over the years. The number of respondents answering that they use corporate storytelling as a content-related activity has grown every year since 2019.
The most used content creation tools are video and podcast production, which are also common tools for corporate storytelling. We also see that both video and podcast production has become increasingly popular. One respondent of the survey answered the following about creating podcasts:
"We found the podcasts we put on the site surprisingly popular so we intend to do a whole series this year."
Read more about creating podcasts and get some valuable tips from our senior consultant Rowena Crowley in our article 2020 corporate communication predictions.
There is no doubt that video is on its way to taking over as the most common format for content. The networking company Cisco (PDF) predicts that in 2022 video will make up to 82% of consumers' internet traffic, which is 15 times higher than it was in 2017. Videos are a great way of telling your company's story in both longer brand videos on YouTube, and in shorter clips on social media and on your corporate website.
If you want to learn more about creating engaging content using video, read our article How to engage your audiences on social media with video, written by our Web Editor Matilda Ekström.
Who works with content creation?
It can be a challenge trying to create relevant content, which is often a time-consuming activity that many companies don't find the time for. Of the respondents of the Web Management Survey 2022, 48% use an in-house team that works with content creation. 40% of the companies collaborate with an agency to create content. We see that more companies prefer to publish the content themselves, where 57% say that an in-house team is responsible for content publishing.
How can we help?
To have someone to help with the often overwhelming task of creating engaging content could be useful in many ways. Getting an outside perspective on your business and what your stakeholders want and need could lead to new ideas and angles. Comprend has plenty of talented consultants ready to help you write engaging content for each of your target groups. Read more about our content offering.