Where to?

Digital Marketing Trends for 2018

Digital Marketing Trends

Digital marketing is a minefield; risks of disruptors everywhere and prone to change with a simple click.   

So, what to concentrate on this year for the digital marketer? Some, if not all, won’t be a new concept or anything you haven’t heard of before. In fact, some of the trends have cropped up in trend lists for the last few years.  Nonetheless, they certainly shouldn’t be overlooked; they offer great insight in to consumers and provide numerous opportunities to businesses to jump on.

 

Content Personalisation

Not exactly a new trend since personalising content has been built in to marketing strategies since 2017, but there’s certainly no signs of its usage slowing down.  In fact, offering more one-to-one marketing experiences will be pretty vital in 2018 as consumers demand even more from brands.

To execute it effectively, you need to have accurate data, so you can learn as much as possible about your audience, their interests, preferences and behaviours.  This allows you to segment the audience in to buyer personas and from here, tailor offers to the characteristics of those personas, as well as marketing to them via the platform they use.   

Voice Optimised Content

60% of searches are done on mobile, with many of these being voice controlled thanks to the rise of products like the Amazon Echo and Google Home, not to mention the now long-standing Siri, it goes without saying that marketers need to work on creating voice optimised content in 2018.

The conversational aspect of talking to a device appeals to users (Siri’s knock-knock jokes and beat-boxing anyone?!).  However, there are still significant drawbacks – will technology ever be so intelligent to detect and fully recognise every accent and regional dialogue.  So if it came down to making major investment in either voice optimised content or strategies that have more weight behind them, I’d skip it this time around.

 

Video Advertising

2017 saw companies embrace the use of video to advertise to consumers, with 90% of user-shared content being video.  Video gives brands the opportunity to get their creative juices following; whether it be a 10-second or 5-minute video, live-stream or timed video content consumers have shown they lap it up. 

Test the various ways to video advertise to see which ones fit your brand and customers, just be mindful you’re not creating video content just for the sake of it, should it prove to provide a lesser ROI than existing digital marketing techniques you employ.   

 

Chatbots

Marketing automation at it’s finest, some would say.  The ‘joy’ of chatbots is their ability to deliver information in real time, therefore being quick and effective for consumers.  Some research has found that up to 40% of younger generations use chatbots every day.  For simple questions, Chatbots can be the answer but they simply aren’t advanced enough, right now, to deal with anything more complex.  Crucially for me, they lack the personal touch so could play a small part in distancing the consumer from the business.  But that’s just me.  Chatbots can certainly offer great benefits and engage a totally different kind of consumer so definitely not one to overlook.  

 

Influencers

Influencer marketing is a tool that none of us are unfamiliar with, but trustworthy influencer marketing is the key for the coming year.  Consumers aren’t daft, they can sense when something isn’t genuine and, quite frankly, are fed up of it.  They need to trust the words of an influencer as being a true opinion, rather than a bought one.  A sentiment clearly felt by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) with the clamp down on influencers by requiring them to clearly label paid-for content.

And let’s not forget, consumers are your influencers too.  Involving them in your brand story and buyer experience is a great way to create user-generated content – think Coca-Cola’s Share a Coke campaign as just one example.  Coca-Cola has saw world-wide success with this campaign, with consumers loving it, becoming closely connected with the brand.

 

Content

Content is going nowhere in 2018 so it goes without saying every marketer should continue to focus on creating engaging and user-centric content.  

 

Micro-moments

Defined as moments when people reflexively take out a device, mostly a smartphone (96%), to learn or do something.  It’s an urgent, must-know-right-now action that happens numerous times a day.  Optimising content for mobile, making sure it’s content rich and easily accessed means the searcher is likely to become captured and, ultimately, results in brand trust forming.

 

For all these trends, and existing practises, the focus of a marketer must be to optimise on the changes brought about by technology and altering consumer demands.  New mediums need to be explored, but still with a heavy focus on rich content and organic search alongside the rise of trust-worthy influencers. 

 

If you need a helping hand with digital marketing then get in touch to see how we can give just that.

Published on: 2nd February 2018 by Rachel