To engage an audience that is eager to form a connection with their favorite brand, interactive content has been widely used in marketing campaigns. It consists of a piece of content that invites the audience to reply. It can assume many forms — text, image, infographic, etc. — as you will discover below.
This type of content can bring your company several benefits, such as boosting engagement, retention, and generating qualified leads. However, to achieve these results, it is important to understand
We will explain in this article what interactive content is and how you can use it in an inbound marketing strategy. In addition to that, we will compare the results of interactive and static content and show some tools to create this type of content. Let’s dive in!
What is interactive content?
Interactive content, as we mentioned before, is content that requires an action from the audience. The action depends on what is requested on the post (click, answer, interact). A simple format is to ask a question and present options that can be selected according to the reaction (like, comment, sharing).
However, it is possible to create sophisticated interactive content that provides immersive experiences to the audience and is more effective to reach your company’s goals. They can educate or inform and entertain. Among those, these are the most popular content types:
- quizzes — a series of questions about any topic that offers a result according to the user’s answers
- interactive infographics — content that mixes written text and visual elements to present a topic (that is usually educational). It facilitates the audience’s understanding
- calculators — the audience fills in fields to calculate savings, etc.
- contests — these invite the audience to act (for example, sending pictures, commenting, sharing, tagging a friend) for the chance to win a reward
- interactive white papers — guides that provide detailed information on topics within your company’s field of expertise
There are many ways to include interactive content in your inbound strategy considering the numerous formats available.
What are some benefits that interactive content can bring to your company?
We already mentioned a few benefits that this type of content can bring to your company, but let’s dive in to some other benefits.
- boosts engagement — the audience becomes more engaged, as interactive content provides a more compelling experience through its rich features encouraging the audience to actively consume the content
- generates more leads and increases conversions — interactive content grabs the attention of the reader. Since it’s more compelling and capable of engaging the audience, it makes the reader far more likely to move through the buyer’s journey, which leads to higher conversion rates
- increases retention — interactive experiences help you to nurture your leads, leading them to build a relationship with your company and to continue to look for your services
- drives traffic — since it grabs attention and is highly shareable, the traffic on your pages tends to increase
- allows brand differentiation — among all of the content available online, interactive posts stands out. As a result, your brand differentiates itself from competitors
- allows advanced personalization — interactive content enables your company to measure aspects and collect information that other types of content does not. Therefore, you can get useful insights thanks to the way that your prospects interact with this type of content.
How can interactive content be included in an inbound marketing strategy?
In this topic, we will discuss the three most important aspects you need to consider including interactive content in your company’s inbound marketing strategy and make it successful.
To use interactive content in your company’s inbound marketing strategy, the first thing that you have to think about is the goals you want to achieve. All of them are engaging and capable of driving traffic, but since each content piece has a different approach, they also bring different results.
Quizzes, for example, are useful to gather information about your audience, which makes it possible to better understand it and create personalized campaigns focused on your prospects’ needs and pains.
On the other hand, infographics are more helpful if your company aims to educate the audience and build trust using lighter content since they can be based on research and provide accurate information about a topic.
Some of the main reasons to use interactive content, according to the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) are:
- educating the audience
- create brand awareness
- lead generation/top of the funnel
- social media/community engagement
You should also take into account the purchase funnel’s stages. A study conducted by the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) in 2017 indicates that the most effective interactive contents vary in each stage despite bringing positive results in all of them. Here are the most efficient content pieces for each stage, according to CMI:
- early-stage — games (77%), contests (74%), quizzes and infographics (59%)
- middle stage — interactive eBooks (54%), interactive white papers and interactive lookbooks (50%)
- late-stage — configurators and wizards (33%), calculators (30%)
All of these points will impact the decision of where to publish your company’s interactive posts. You can use your website, blog, social media pages, or landing pages, depending on your strategy.
Social media is one of the best channel options because it already encourages users to interact. However, depending on the type of content, a landing page with a lead form might work better, which is the case of interactive white paper, for example. Regardless of the type of post, social media is still a great tool to promote it.
What are the differences between static and interactive content results?
Some studies indicate that interactive content is more efficient for marketing strategies than static. The CMI study we mentioned above shows that 87% of the interviewed marketers agree that interactive content is more effective in attracting the audience’s attention than static content.
A Demand Metric survey has shown that, in comparison to static content, interactive content is somewhat or very effective when it comes to educating the audience (93% versus 70%), differentiating from competitors (88% versus 55%), and being shared (38% versus 17%). They also suggest that interactive content generates conversions 70% of the time while static content only accomplishes this goal 36% of the time.
How to create interactive content
Given the specific features of interactive posts, it is necessary to use specialized websites and software to create this type of content. We listed below some options that are useful for this purpose.
In this platform, it is possible to create polls, quizzes, personality tests, stories, and interactive videos. It also offers distribution and measurement tools. Apester’s users can edit the available templates or contract creative and content services, drive conversions and monetize the content.
ContentTools software enables the user to create quizzes, assessments, calculators, contests, interactive maps, data visualization, infographics, microsites, and ebooks. These contents aim at generating leads, capturing and engaging them.
Uberflip offers a platform that allows your company to centralize, organize, personalize and distribute the content across multiple channels as well as to measure the results. In other words, it provides tools to manage and personalize the buyer’s journey of any kind of strategy (demand generation, account-based marketing, sales enablement, content marketing). Its focus is to create experiences that boost engagement and conversions.
EX.CO is used to create interactive content, such as videos, polls, flips, quizzes, trivia, and checklists. In addition to that, it grants access to Getty Image and Video bank, customer support, and tools to brand, distribute, analyze (analytics, behavioral insights).
Qzzr is a platform that enables creating, customizing quizzes, translating them into different languages and including CTA’s, lead forms and offers at the end. Among other available functions, it allows you to review stats, analyze responses and export leads.
Ion Interactive provides a wide range of services that covers from planning the content to measuring the results, that is, it assesses you to not only create interactive content but also to develop an interactive marketing program.
It is possible to use the platform to create your content based on templates that are easy to edit and publish with minimum training. With Ion, you can produce interactive infographics, interactive white papers, calculators, assessments, interactive eBooks, quizzes, and interactive landing pages, for example.
As you were able to discover in this article, interactive posts are great tools to improve your inbound marketing strategy. They are more effective than static posts when it comes to engaging your audience, generating qualified leads, and increasing retention. For these reasons, we strongly suggest you consider using them in your strategy.
Do you want to know more about the usage of interactive content in marketing strategies to innovate your campaigns? Then enjoy your visit to read our other article and find out the top 5 interactive experiences you should create in 2020.