Fives Ways of Using AI-Powered Content Marketing to Understand Shifts in COVID-Consumer Behavior


Monday, November 9, 2020 9:58 PM

As we enter month eight (!!) of the Coronavirus pandemic, we have seen many things change within our world – working from home becoming the norm, social distancing as a best practice, and wearing a mask everywhere we go. One thing that’s been hard to keep track of is the consistently changing consumer behavior as affected by COVID-19. The products we need to stay safe and how we go about getting our “essential items” has also changed; and because of this it’s become nearly impossible for digital marketers to figure out not only what content is resonating with users, but also what content is driving real ROI.

According to McKinsey and their survey across 45 different countries, they’ve been able to report that as of 10/26:

  • Consumer sentiment varies greatly across countries depending on their current COVID-19 status and will continue to shift as the pandemic continues to impact them in different ways.
  • Divergent sentiment is also reflected in spending intent across categories. In most countries, consumers intend to continue shifting their spending to essentials, while cutting back on most discretionary categories.
  • Consumers across the globe have responded to the crisis and its associated disruption to normal consumer behaviors by trying different shopping behaviors, expressing a high intent (65% or greater) to incorporate these shifts going forward.
  • Consumers around the globe are at vastly different stages of resuming out-of-home activities.
  • Digital is the new norm to connect with consumers — this shift has been consistent across countries and categories, as consumers in most parts of the world are staying home.
  • Consumers across the globe plan to reduce holiday spending compared to 2019, even in places that have shown signs of recovery.

With no end in near sight for the pandemic, how can brands and digital marketers stay abreast of these shits in consumer behavior, and make sure content and messaging is aligned with their new needs? AI-powered content marketing. We break down below five reasons why this should be an integral part of any content marketing campaign, during and post-COVID:

  1. AI-powered content marketing focuses campaigns on achieving bigger business outcomes versus clicks or pageviews.
  • It’s even more important to make sure that each piece of content that you create and distribute has a defined objective within the greater digital strategy, geared towards achieving some sort of bigger business outcome. Is its intention to provide valuable resources to your audience? News on the latest COVID precautions being taken by your brand or how you’re helping to make daily life easier? Check that each piece of content is in-line with your larger brand mission & serves a bigger purpose. In case you’re still searching for what those overarching goals should be, we recommend considering creating content that:
    • Serves as a resource for the greater community.
    • Grows brand awareness & strengthening loyalty.
    • Drives traffic + increased time spent onsite.
    • Generates leads + building a first-party audience.
  1. AI-powered calls-to-action (i.e. Content Intelligence) brings unique insights as to what’s resonating with consumers and can bring them further down the funnel of consideration
  • It’s important to drive users to take desired actions and doing so will provide informative insights that can positively impact future content creation strategy. As previously mentioned COVID-19 continues to change consumer behavior in a magnitude of ways, so it’s key for success to have tangible data that demonstrates whether your content is missing the mark or meeting the new needs of your audience.
  1. AI-powered content marketing helps marketers adjust brand messaging to meet current needs of consumers.
  • What consumers want most from brands right now is tangible and helpful action, rooted in transparency, empathy and compassion. As the situation around COVID-19 and current events are evolving on a daily basis, AI-powered content marketing helps brands stay current with new needs from consumers and help to inform future content creation strategy to ensure it doesn’t miss the mark.
  1. AI-powered content marketing (specifically Content Intelligence) gives marketers the opportunity to build their own first-party audiences.
  • With the onset of CCPA, GDPR, Google’s impending removal of the cookie and the passing of prop 24 here in California, it’s never been more important for marketers to build first-party owned audiences. By utilizing Content Intelligence, pre-qualified retargeting pools are can be created to continue nurturing long-term relationships between brands and consumers.
  1. AI-powered content marketing allows maximum results for allocated ad spend.
  • COVID-19 has created an even greater urgency for marketers to make sure they are making the most of each available dollar within their ad spend. By employing AI-powered content marketing strategies, they are able to gain proprietary data to not only understand which pieces of content are the most engaging for consumers, but also to focus on amplifying that content further than pieces that are not garnering that same level of engagement.

Since the beginning of COVID-19, we’ve seen clients that utilize AI-powered content marketing achieve (on average) a 23% CTR with their content marketing call-to-actions compared to less than 1% without AI-powered marketing, a reduction of cost-per-engagement by up to 85%, and more than doubling time spent onsite with desired landing pages. Are you ready to take the next step in digital transformation and meet the new needs of consumer behavior by employing AI-powered content marketing? Reach out to us and start your free trial today!

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