Let’s be honest: static content can be a little boring.
It gets the job done, and can help keep your audiences informed by providing useful and important information, but it doesn’t create interest in your readers.
Interactive content is the new frontier of content marketing.
Finding areas in your content marketing strategy to add elements of interactive content can help you increase engagement rates and bring audiences back for more with entertaining content.
Viewers like to have interactive experiences, and increases in interactive videos, calculators, and quizzes have helped companies gain the attention of key audiences.
One area that often gets overlooked is blog posts.
Blogs are typically static content that helps provide readers with answers to questions and details about your services or industry.
However, creating interactive blog posts can help your company grow your audience and create more connections with readers.
In this post, we will cover the following topics:
What are Interactive Blog Posts?
Interactive blog posts are different from other forms of interactive content.
An interactive video, for example, is a full strategy on its own. But interactive blog posts are, at their core, static content pieces that have interactive elements added in.
This helps to make the static content more engaging while still keeping the format of a blog post.
Adding in these interactive elements to traditional blog posts helps to improve the overall reader experience with the piece while still maintaining the integrity of a blog post.
The post remains static but presents itself as a more engaging content type that creates a positive reader experience.
In that sense, a GIF or image is not a good option to increase engagement and use in place of an interactive element.
A reader doesn’t interact with a GIF, even if it is in movement and more interesting than a static image.
Interactive elements require more active participation from users.
A calculator that helps calculate ROI in a blog about the importance of tracking ROI is a better option (we actually did this in this post).
What are the Benefits of Interactive Blog Posts?
So why are interactive blog posts important? Do they really bring about worthwhile benefits to your content marketing strategy?
There are many ways that interactive content can help you reach your marketing goals, and interactive blogs play a large role in that success.
Blog posts in general are your most common and consistent source of content, and you probably update your blog regularly to help your SEO and gain more traffic.
Adding interactive elements helps to amplify their reach. It also:
Increase Time on Page
Your users spend more time on a page when there are interactive elements.
The embedded content gives them a reason to stay as they can click, play, learn, and engage with the interactive elements rather than skimming an article and leaving the page.
While time on the page itself isn’t a metric that means much to your bottom line, it does relate to your engagement and conversion rates.
Readers that spend a longer time on a page are more likely to convert to the next stage of your marketing funnel.
Build Brand Awareness
The strongest brands have an easily-recognizable message and style that helps them stay ahead of the competition and lets them stand out.
Interactive content gives you new areas to expand your brand voice and provide excellent value to your audiences.
Improve Click-through Rates
Improving your click-through rates, or CTR, is often a major marketing goal in companies of all sizes.
CTR refers to the percentage of your readers that click on a link like your CTA or hyperlinks. This is also a conversion metric that helps you track the journey of your customers.
Interactive CTAs or other interactive elements help readers find value in the content on the page, leading them to be more likely to click on links.
Boost Your Sales
As well as directly helping your users improve their experiences when engaging with interactive content, it can also help you indirectly improve their experience by gathering key data for sales, helping move people through the sales funnel, or identifying pain points and needs of your customers.
The end goal of marketing is to help get users into your brand’s sales funnels, and any steps that can be made to improve the experience will help you get your users to the next part of their journey.
Enhancing the Customer Experience
One of the biggest benefits of interactive blog posts and interactive content, in general, is that they help improve the experience customers have on a page.
Just reading through a wall of text isn’t that interesting, even if it is important.
Interactive elements put your customer in the driver’s seat and let them feel in control of their own buyer’s journey.
It helps them feel more attached to the content and increases the enjoyment they get out of their research and discovery periods.
It also helps your readers appreciate the experience and allows your brand to stand out from the competition.
Helps You Collect Data
Another benefit of interactive blog posts is the data you can collect from users who participate in your content.
Certain types of interactive content like calculators or quizzes can have forms to collect information built-in, and oftentimes the appeal of the interactive elements is enough to convince readers to fill in their information.
Some of the platforms used to create interactive content — Ion, for example — can also have behind-the-scenes collection tools in place to capture audience data and information that can help you improve your interactive content or help you learn more about participants.
Either way, investing in a tool can be a big benefit to help you create interactive content faster.
5 Effective Ways to Make Your Blog Posts More Interactive
Adding interactive elements to your blog posts can come in a few different formats.
Remember, interactive blog posts aren’t a separate form of content, but a traditional static blog with different elements added in to improve the experience.
Here are five different ways to make your blog posts more interactive and help your marketing efforts increase engagement rates.
An interactive quiz is a type of interactive format that takes a user through different questions and delivers a result.
The result is generated from the answers that users submit, meaning that there can be customized results for each user, rather than only a few static options.
Quizzes are a great way to build fun into your blogs as well as help your readers reach different conclusions.
They can also help your users think about their problems and their solutions through a different lens.
For example, you can create a quiz that helps users figure out which of their marketing activities should be approached first.
Creating an interactive quiz with tools like Ion or other platforms can help you quickly get your quiz created so you can add it to your blog posts.
After you’ve devised the questions you want to ask, you can plan different answers based on the inputs into your quiz.
Relating your quiz to your blog topic or the CTA can help improve conversion rates as well.
Interactive videos are another type of interactive element you can add to your blog posts.
These are videos that require user input in order to achieve different outcomes. For example, clicking a pop-up in the video can take you to a specific point in the video, a different relevant video, or help users control the video viewing experience.
Interactive videos keep viewers watching videos for longer, and can help increase engagement with your content.
It’s another way to optimize and improve the user experience and help your blog content stand out from regular static posts.
In addition to helping with your data metrics, interactive videos can also increase your brand popularity and help you create a stronger brand voice that resonates with viewers.
Then, you are able to bring traffic back to your blog time and time again.
Another great type of interactive content to add to your blogs is a calculator.
Interactive calculators make calculations based on data input and previously integrated data formulas. This creates a fully customized experience for your readers, even more so than a quiz.
While interactive quizzes will have common answers based on the results you program in, an interactive calculator is completely unique based on the input of individual users.
For example, an interactive calculator can have programmed formulas that help determine ROI based on the initial campaign budget and the resulting sales.
Each customer will have a different ROI rate based on the data they put in.
With these personalized experiences built into your interactive blogs, readers will value the content you provide and will come back to use the same calculator again if it shows useful results to them.
They are great for end-of-funnel blogs, since a calculator can help close a deal or help users determine discounts, quantities, finances, and measurements.
Graphics are a great way to communicate a lot of information in a visually engaging way.
When you make them interactive graphics, you further improve the user experience and help get your information through to viewers.
Interactive graphics help your users explore images and find the parts that are relevant to their needs without needing to experience the entire graphic.
Rather than a static frame, users have control over their viewing experience. Personalized experiences are preferable for your audiences, and help them enjoy your content more.
By adding interactive graphics to your blog posts, you can help take the same static information that you get in the post itself and display it in another way.
When the graphics are interactive, you can increase the number of clicks and strengthen the message you give your readers. You can also get more information across to your audience than static images.
Great examples of interactive graphics include graphs with clickable lines to get more information on trends, statistical images that chart the points after the interaction, and pie charts that fill in as the user clicks and engages with the image.
One of the most common interactive elements embedded into blog pages are interactive maps.
Interactive maps can be customized to show what is displayed across the map based on the area where the user lives or the areas they are searching within.
For example, if your map was showing different retailers of your product across the United States, the map can generate different results based on current location.
This helps your users find the most helpful information for their needs as soon as possible, as well as allowing them to have a personalized experience.
Maps can also be used to show weather, demographic trends, environmental information, locations, and population data.
When you include maps in your interactive blog posts, you can help to create better user experiences as well as adding a sense of relevancy and place to the content you’ve created.
When your content is grounded, your interactive blog posts will have a better chance of being read and returned to.
Maps are often simple plug-ins that can quickly be added to pages without too much effort placed on your team.
Creating engaging experiences with your audience brings about a wide array of benefits including higher engagement rates, more clicks and conversions, and ultimately more sales for your brand.
Building content that helps to bridge the gap between static and interactive can help your brand grow.
Interactive blog posts are only a part of what a full interactive marketing content strategy looks like.
As digital marketing continues to grow and develop, finding more areas for interactive content opportunities will help you stay ahead of the trends.
If you are interested in more information about interactive content, check out our free interactive content guide!
You’ll learn about different interactive formats, ways to include interactive elements into your strategies, and tips on how to implement your new plan and get started today.