Marketing is all about dealing with change and following trends. Digital marketing has picked up in a big way and businesses have to keep up with the developments in this field in order to stay in the race and reap benefits. As 2017 is coming to a close, businesses need to know what is in store for them in 2018 and where digital marketing is headed. Here are the seven digital marketing trends 2018 that could be incorporated into the overall strategy of an organization:
#1: Video Marketing
The old adage “A picture is worth more than a thousand words” holds good even now. According to digital marketing experts, a one minute video is equivalent to 1.8 million words. The Cisco Visual Networking Index report published recently showed that videos have contributed to a four-fold increase in Internet traffic volumes. It is predicted that over 80 percent of all the Internet traffic will be represented by video by 2019.
According to a report published in The Wall Street Journal, online video consumption increased multi-fold during the period 2011 to 2016 and this trend is expected to continue over the next few years. Moreover, teens and young adults are spending more time watching video on the Internet than watching television.
Marketing is all about attracting attention as well and videos are a great way to not only attract attention but also stand out from the competitors.
#2: Native Advertisements
Users have always found pop-ups to be very annoying. However, they are being used even now. This is because they have been found to be more effective than the traditional methods of website advertising such as static banners. However, a new trend that is expected to emerge in 2018 is native advertisements. It involves embedding ads within content. As these ads stand out, the chances of users reading the ads are more. Further, the ads would not annoy the readers as they would appear to be a part of the content.
Moreover, studies have shown that this type of advertising is more effective on mobile/smart devices. Over the past few years, these devices have continued to replace desktops and laptops. Digital marketers may continue to use the pop-ups, but what they have to focus on is creating more of organic appearing ads or native ads in 2018.
#3: Bespoke Content
Content has a key role to play in making digital marketing more effective. Content has always been important and will continue to be so, but the trend will be to create bespoke content so that it becomes easier to provide the desired impact.
It has been observed time and again that personalizing call to action statements (CTAs) offer better results. The eBay owned online ticket exchange StubHub said recently that there was a 42 percent improvement in response when more customized call to action statements was made use of.
As has always been the case, standing out among the competition is one of the most important factors for succeeding. This is applicable to digital marketing as well. Customized content is very helpful in grabbing the attention of the user. As it displays a greater level of professionalism, it will be of great help in impressing potential customers, especially those that are technically savvy.
#4: Big Data
Since its inception, the Big Data has had a key role to play in advertising. Over the years, Big Data has enabled many advertisers to obtain more insight into prospective customers’ habits that were difficult to assess in the past. Big data enables advertisers to refine their target audience a little more carefully. This way they spend a lesser amount of money on advertisements. This is because they can eliminate people who may not be receptive to what they have to offer from the target group.
Proximity marketing makes use of Big Data. Location services track exactly where a customer is through his/her mobile device. Ads and offers are then pushed out to the customer based on his/her interests.
Further, Big Data enables powerful analysis. It helps advertisers to track conversion rates and several other factors in a better manner. Tools for handling Big Data are also expected to grow as experts keep touting its benefits.
#5: Community Development
In order to build a community around brands/products, forums had to be set up and people had to be requested to share the news with their friends and family members. Today, all that businesses have to do is use the content (words, pictures, and videos) created by Internet users, which is growing by the day, to build their brand and sell more of their products or services. People need not even be prodded or encouraged to make content. However, a little bit of support goes a long way in building a group of influencers. Paying bloggers and vloggers, among other influencers, to discuss products/services is another strategy that can be considered. It is a good idea for a business to build a team of influencers to realize long-term income benefits.
#6: Social Media Marketing
In the years to come, marketing leaders are expected to spend more time on the social media. This, in turn, will drive social media budgets up. This is what a study carried out by TEKsystems in 2017 has shown. This could be attributed to the fact that consumers involve in intuitive interactions as and when they come across a brand or want to buy something. And, the best place to involve in discussions is the social media network.
Facebook is the most popular social media network. Further, the use of the storytelling technique and providing emotionally engaging content are the latest trends in social marketing. Use of strong emotions makes it easy to spread content. By the end of this year, most of the social media platforms are expected to enable creation and sharing of video content, stream live video, and access news.
#7: Mobile Marketing
Mobile marketing is the in-thing now. This trend is only expected to go full steam in the years ahead. Google has said that the mobile-first algorithm will be launched early next year. This means that Google will use indexed mobile content to decide how the results should be ranked. This is to say that there will not be any adjustments in future for mobile users alone.
Summarizing, digital marketing will continue to evolve. Understanding the trends helps businesses to be prepared and improve their bottom line. All the digital marketing trends 2018 may not last for a long time, but knowing what to expect helps businesses stay ahead of the competition.