We keep talking about how fast digital marketing is changing and evolving but in reality every other article on upcoming digital marketing trends keeps covering the same things every year.
To put an end to that, here are six trends that have long been here. If you are still not using these in your marketing strategy, you should start now!
1. The Mobile Takeover
Back in 2014 eMarketer predicted that mobile would dominate nearly all key search metrics by 2018. In its Q3 2014 US Consumer Device Preference Report, Moveable Ink reported that smartphones accounted for 48% of all email opens. Finally, half of e-commerce traffic was coming from mobile devices.
And, boy, they were all right!
Mobile has not been an option for quite some time now. Whether it’s a website, campaigns, or search, marketers and brands have to start optimizing for the mobile experience if they want to reach a worthy chunk of their audiences.
In fact, Google has already announced that they prioritize mobile experience by introducing Mobile First index which is now default for any website.
Actually, here is another number to put everything in perspective. Half of users said a poor mobile experience made them less likely to engage with a brand.
Marketers should stop focusing on a standalone mobile strategy and instead integrate mobile into all strategies.
2. Visual Storytelling Rules!
Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, Canva, TikTok… Visual storytelling has never been more important.
That statement may not surprise you. However, it is worth mentioning again that those who want to make a social splash with their articles and campaigns will have to create and/or include a lot of visual aids like infographics, photos, videos and slides.
With average attention spans getting shorter, (presently at 8 seconds on average in the U.S.) tidbits of targeted, useful, and entertaining information will have a greater and more positive impact than long chunks of text.
3. Curation and Creation: A Match Made in Heaven
If there is one thing we’ve seen emerging through the years, it’s the rise to stardom of content curation. According to the Third Annual IMN Content Marketing Survey, 82% marketers now curate content. And with the huge amount of content available out there, the state of things is not about to change.
“How huge,” you ask? As many as 25 billion new pieces of content in any given month! Further, between 60 and 70% of the content created by B2B marketing departments isn’t used.
Content creation will always matter, of course. However, winning the hearts and minds of consumers will imply a mixture between original and sourced content. The marketers and brands willing to find the gems for their audiences instead of tooting their own horns will stand out from the crowd of publishers in their field. This, in turn, will allow them to drive qualified leads, attract new customers, and build stronger loyalty.
4. A More Human Form of Marketing
Content marketing has to be more specific, valuable, targeted content combining everyday life elements.
There was a time, not long ago, when marketers just had to send the same dull and boring messages to everyone for sales to happen. Unfortunately for them, things have changed — and quickly. Technology has given consumers a voice that they are not afraid to use.
For example, do you know that more than 8 in 10 consumers will shop from brands that offer highly personalized discounts? According to an annual report by Netbiscuits, 80% of people will recommend a brand based on their mobile web experience, with millennials leading the charge. And yet, only about one third of marketers ask them what they want.
The phrases “buyer’s journey” and “audience personas” are everywhere. Strategies will have to speak to people and on their social platforms of choice. They will be customized and human, with a focus on better and faster customer care.
Not sure how you can do that? Check out how Taylor Swift has humanized her own brand. She is not just a talented artist, but she also knows how to reach her fans in a meaningful way.
We have been talking about humanized content marketing for years now. Check out our guide on creating customer centric content marketing strategy . Here’s also our guide into personalized marketing.
For content to gain an audience, it needs to be sourced from the audience. That human element is crucial. Listen to them
Further reading: Six Conversion Optimization Tactics to Improve Your Bottom Line
5. The Relationship Between Brands and Consumers Redefined
Brand relationships with customers are going to be even more important.
Brands and marketers do not just need to act in a more human way. They also have to understand the relationship that ties them to consumers. How people find you and what they expect from you has never mattered more!
In one of its studies, Global Web Index reveals how increasingly important this relationship has been:
- Consumers mainly use search engines (50 percent) and consumer review sites (44 percent) to research brands online.
- Recommendations are still one of the top discovery sources (41% of online users)
- Social networks may be where people hang out, but they still want to interact on brand websites (47 percent of Internet users)
- When following you on social media, consumers expect knowledge sharing (30 percent), information on your latest products and services (27 percent), and entertainment (24 percent)
- The best way to find advocates? Reward them! That’s what at least half of Internet users want.
6. Data Analysis Takes Center Stage
Have you visited your Facebook page, Twitter account, or Pinterest account lately? You now have access to more detailed metrics than ever before!
While this data doesn’t tell you everything about your ideal audience, it’s a great start. Taking the time to familiarize yourself with and understand it will allow you to tailor your message and better reach specific segments of your audience.
Conclusion: Less Is More
It is time that marketers and brands realize that only high quality content earns eyes and shares.
Consumers are already “running away” from the noise and engaging with content and campaigns that are quality-centric and offer a customized experience.
Clear goals and objectives will yield the best ROI!