When creating content for a marketing strategy, one question may come up: how do we produce original content that surprises people and keep them interested? That’s always been the goal of digital marketers, but it’s certainly a challenge.
In order to do that, most marketers try to create personalized pieces, those that resonate with an audience by meeting their needs. However, there’s another way to get there: interactive content development. That strategy allows marketing teams to differentiate their brand with effective and engaging stories.
By going this way, companies tend to increase revenue and generate more leads. If you’re interested in knowing more about interactive content, check it out.
Definition of Interactive Content
So what is interactive content? It’s a piece of content that engages people because it requires their active participation. Think of a prospect reading an e-book and making choices that leads to different parts of it, for instance. It must feel like dialogue, with your brand actually getting responses from the reader.
This type of experience is important right now because the world has been changing. Users consume data differently nowadays: they want to interact more, and they also want to have fun and be surprised while learning something relevant. Even though content marketing itself is still important, we are evolving from static content to interactive ones.
A very good proof of what we just said is social media. Ever noticed how much time people spend interacting with others on those platforms? They consume a lot of content that is not strictly serious and static. Instead, those pieces are dynamic, different, and engaging because it involves images, videos, and other visual aspects. It’s neither tiring nor boring to read.
Also, on the social media world, users have a power: to create, to share, to comment on other’s ideas. They feel alive and powerful while still having fun.
If you want to resonate with your audience and connect with them more effectively, that’s the direction to look at. This will help you handle the content overload that is so common today on the internet. It will also help your business focus more on user experience. That translates into driving more leads and increasing revenue.
Benefits of Interactive Content
Ok, let’s move on to the main benefits.
Focusing on interactivity will help your company engage prospects. That means your content will be interesting for them and will make them feel that they need to stay connected with your brand. By interacting with you, they will feel motivated to go further on the buyer’s journey: from a lead to a customer, and then a promoter of your product or service.
After all, a non-static approach is very much like a game: it gets the reader to participate and pay attention to specific details and rules. They are part of something engaging and also are having a lot of fun.
Interactive content is also a key to increase conversion rates. Once you’ve gotten your prospective customer to participate, you can also ask them for something in return. That can be an e-mail address, which will allow you to follow up.
As we mentioned earlier, that strategy helps the customer move through the journey, getting closer to the purchase decision. But in the meantime, they will have a great experience and will remember that.
If the goal is to stand out from a crowd of content marketing, going interactive is the solution. After all, dynamic content is a very specific and different kind. It’s also tailored to the needs of a persona you already have, just like the rest of your content strategy. But it goes even deeper: it considers the feelings of your customers and their needs for engagement.
Therefore, you develop special, creative pieces that may not be like anything else customers have ever seen around the internet. It’s valuable to them because it addresses topics that they are interested in, but it’s also dynamic and visually attractive.
Interactivity is also a great strategy to collect data about your prospects. After all, when participating actively, they are making choices, deciding which direction to go and what they want to see. Sometimes, they are also giving a lot of info away by answering questions.
That way, companies can get to know the prospects a lot better. They can study the data and find out what those prospects need, what they want, and what they already have. Also, marketing teams can discover the problems and pain points customers are facing. That helps them optimize their persona, their methods, and campaigns.
Great content is interactive. Great content is also shareable. People like to read it and spread it around in order to show their friends how engaging and interesting it was. You can even go viral if you invest in interaction because that’s what users on the internet want the most, as we said before. In other words, you get a lot more page views and traffic.
That type of content is also useful for educational purposes. After all, you can use it to teach people more about their problems and possible solutions. While they’re making choices, they also learn a lot about their interests, which helps them solve pain points.
Types of Interactive Content
Now, let’s analyze the most common types of dynamic content out there.
One of them is the interactive eBook that we previously mentioned. That’s an eBook with a lot of different chapters on it, just like the traditional one. But the key feature is: the reader chooses what to read, and the information is tailored to their choices. Thus, you have a piece that helps many people differently.
Another example is a quiz, which is a very popular type. It’s a set of questions that engage users by getting real answers from them about a certain subject. You can also have a calculator, a tool that helps prospects find math results to their problems. They can calculate the ROI or another KPI, as well as calculate how much money they will save if they use your product.
Self-assessments are a good idea too. Many of them come in the form of a personality test, for example. Surveys and polls are also great because it involves people with questions while collecting answers and valuable data.
We can also tell a story using an infographic. That’s a very powerful tool to do so because it’s visually interesting. In the same way, an interactive map can be used.
Best Practices for Interactive Content Development
Here are some good practices for your interactive content development. First off, you can try changing the content you already have, as a way to redesign the strategies. That’s interesting because it requires way less effort than starting from scratch. Also, it stays on the same topic you’ve been discussing over the years.
Another thing to remember: always measure and monitor your results. If you switch to a non-static approach, that’s because you want to know your customers’ preferences. In order to do that, it’s important to measure and collect data with certain KPIs.
To become interactive, you will have to get creative. But how do you know what really works with your audience? The answer is testing. Specifically, you can use A/B testing to experiment with different versions of a piece. For instance, one set may be built with a headline, and the other go with a different one. Also, your team can change the copy and the questions to see what’s better.
Once you’ve created content, and everything is in place, don’t forget to promote and get your ideas spread all over the internet. This way, you can find your audience and properly engage them.
Another important tip is to consider the buyer’s journey as you produce. Let’s look at a traditional, three-way marketing funnel, with awareness, consideration, and decision. Some types of interaction are perfect for the first stage, like quizzes, polls, and infographics. They are good at grabbing attention to the copy and also to the business.
In the second stage, you can use white papers, eBooks, assessments, and benchmark assessments. As for the final stage, you can choose among a ROI calculator, galleries, product pickers, and surveys.
Successful Interactive Content Strategies
Now, let’s look at some successful examples of strategies with interactive content development. Those were produced with ion’s assistance.
The first one is the successful case of Korn Ferry. Korn Ferry is an organization that helps other companies manage their people. The business took the advice of repurposing existing content and turned them into interactive pieces. Then they were able to know their audiences and their different preferences, based on their choices while interacting. The result was: more leads and engagement.
Another good example is Dell’s strategy. The famous tech company needed a way for people to choose the solutions that better fit their needs. So a digital solution configurator was produced. The tool shows the impact of a selected product or service on the customer’s environment. In order to use it, people need to fill in some specific details about what they’re looking for.
With those insights into the prospects’ problems, Dell teams were able to follow up and conduct the negotiation process effectively. In this way, marketing and sales integrated more as well.
FedEx’s case also offers a great demonstration of how interaction works. With a strategy based on gamification, now they use dynamic experiences to make the shipping easier for their customers. Thereby, they are having more visits and shipments on their website.
The world’s changed, so people consume content differently now. Since they value interaction, it’s important to use that methodology to offer what customers are looking for. Thus, your company can increase conversions and truly engage the audience. That’s why interactive content development is essential nowadays.
You already know the benefits of interactivity. How about learning how to create leads with interactive content?