Today’s consumers want personalized experiences, and the brands that can make good on promises of tailored content stand to gain a lot. In fact, research from Epsilon indicates that 80 percent of consumers are more likely to buy from brands offering personalized experiences, compared to others.

As you’ll see in the latest edition of the Content Marketing Weekly, the concept of personalization enjoys a high place in almost every marketing and advertising strategy.

Google Reportedly Extends the Length of Page Titles in Search Results

In the final week of September, Rank Ranger reported it had detected a gradual increase in the average length of page titles presented in Google search results. According to Search Engine Journal, titles had increased from 55 characters to 83 characters Oct. 1. Throughout September, the number of characters increased sporadically, indicating behind-the-scenes adjustments at Google.

In Q4 2017, Google made similar adjustments to the allowable length of meta descriptions, increasing them for a time before ultimately reducing them after a period of experimentation. SEJ warned that Google could take similar action with title lengths and advised site owners not to update their title tags just yet. After all, Google has yet to comment on the changes.

The importance of deliberate meta descriptions has decreased somewhat in recent months, as Google experiments with dynamic snippets. To further personalize search results based on user intent, Google may decide to take text from elsewhere on the page, rather than display the site’s dedicated description. Could something similar be in the works for title tags?

Read the full story here.

15 Creative Exercises That Are Better Than Brainstorming

Everyone has his or her own preferred way to generate ideas, but creative meetings tend to drift toward a single process. Creatives often end up in a room scribbling vague ideas on a whiteboard until it’s time to go to lunch. This dynamic may work for some people, but managers should encourage their teams to try different approaches to ideation.

HubSpot contributor Dani Mansfield described fifteen unique ways for teams and individuals to spark the creative process. Each exercise forces participants to think about challenges from a new perspective, and some of them even sound like fun.

For example, there’s the the Alter-Ego method, in which team members imagine a famous character or historical figure is the leader of their group. The method allows group members to take a step back from the problem and mentally hand the central challenge off to an imaginary figure, allowing them to present unconventional ideas with less fear of rejection. This is a great exercise to try in October, as many people are already in a masked mindset. How might Black Panther reposition your content strategy?

Read about all the strategies here.

YouTube Rolls More Ad Extensions, Incremental Lift Measurement

Soon, brands advertising on YouTube will have several new options for increasing viewer engagement and generating leads and conversions through video ads. YouTube masterfully personalizes its site, showing each user a homepage populated with content unique to his or her viewing preferences. New ad extensions will take personalization a step further by generating near real-time user engagement analytics.

According to Marketing Land, YouTube is partnering with IRI to offer new metric reporting services to advertisers. Specifically, brands will be able to set up brand lift studies directly within Google Ads, Display and Video 360. Brand lift is a measurement of engagement directly related to a specific campaign.

For instance, a user might see an ad for a brand before one video, then see a survey asking if they recall the brand later on in his or her viewing session. With this information, brands can better track which campaigns generate the most lift.

Additionally, brands will soon have the ability to add CTAs directly into video ads. An ad for a new movie might give the option to buy tickets, for example.

Read more about the new updates here.

Is Your Corporate Culture Conducive to Content Success?

No matter how much time you spend conducting research and strategizing your brand’s content plan, there is still one hard-to-control factor that impacts whether a campaign is successful: culture. Ultimately, the output of creative teams is colored by the culture in which it was produced.

Reporting on insights from this year’s Content Marketing World, Jodi Harris noted that customer demand for accountability has caused many brands to rethink their internal cultures. At the event, many conversations centered on strategies for reducing workplace toxicity and amplifying the voices of individual team members.

Empowering individual team members to take initiative on new projects – rather than simply following a program laid out by a manager – gives them a sense of ownership over the task and provides greater levels of satisfaction, in theory. A few companies have begun to experiment with this structure, called “corporate liberation” by some.

Read more about the subject here.

With advances in technology, it’s becoming easier for brands to identify visitor intent and develop customized experiences based on that data. This is one trend that isn’t likely to be dethroned any time soon.

Alexander Santo is a Brafton writer living in Washington. ​He enjoys searching for the perfect cup of coffee, browsing used book shops and attending punk rock concerts.