It’s 2018 and the digital marketers are getting ready to face the disruptions and challenges coming in the way of achieving their goals. They bank on technological advancements time and again to address the client’s requirements and gain the optimum outcome.
As we witness a transformation from a laptop and desktop-driven age into the mobile-driven era, the advent of new marketing trends is inevitable in the digital world.
Here we go through twenty noteworthy digital marketing trends that are going to impact the marketing strategy in the year 2018 and beyond:
1. AR will be game changer
Pokémon Go has already shown what AR (Augmented Reality) integration with social media can do. As the number of smartphone users steadily increases across the world, different brands will tend to use AR to establish better engagement with consumers in the near future.
For example, the AR technology will enable the brands to show content based on the customer’s location. Experts are of opinion that Instagram and FB will soon integrate AR into their platforms.
2. Importance of Influencers will Decrease
Companies spend a lot of bucks on influencers, but, they are unable to measure the results they could get.
In the coming time, it is fairly possible that the influencer market will collapse as the brands move to organic promotional methods that are more affordable and effective than high-cost influencers. When it comes to increasing RoI, there is no alternative to traditional organic methods.
3. Data will be Dominant
Data analysis has been mainstreamed in the year 2017, and now onward, we can see the rise of data-driven marketing. Marketers will make their strategies on the basis of clear understanding of consumer behavior and their overall journey from search to shopping.
It is fair to mention that digital marketing professionals will monitor the customer’s purchasing path from scratch to learn what compels them to buy.
4. Complete Mobile Takeover is Obvious
These days, handheld devices account for over 60 percent of all digital minutes worldwide. It includes Facebook advertising and searches.
In the year 2018 and beyond, we will witness a complete mobile takeover and digital marketing techniques will be based on the mobile platform. However, it does not mean that desktops and laptops will become obsolete, but yes, their charm will fade with time.
5. Micro-moments will remain in focus
Customers use their mobile devices for almost everything ranging from searching to purchasing.
In 2018, we certainly expect that more people will make instant decisions with the help of smartphones, which will lead to the rise of micro-moments. An integrated marketing strategy should be woven around these micro-moments to ensure that the brands show real-time information to potential customers whenever they look for information or advice.
Google calls these moments Micro-Moments. They’re the I want to know, I want to go, I want to do, and I want to buy moments that are loaded with intent, context, and immediacy. And the marketers have to be ready for it.
6. Ads will be more purposeful
In any digital marketing campaign, ads play a vital role to reach a targeted audience. But then, people have already started giving less attention to the ads, marketers need to rebuild the ad strategy in 2018.
Only purposeful ads with a highly specific objective and capacity to attract a targeted audience will work wonders. With this, we can also expect that mobile ad platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat will post a major growth in the coming years.
7. Video would not enough
Though around 79 percent customers prefer to watch a video to know more about the product, the simple product video would not enough for 2018. Professional live videos will replace the product video and we will witness the active participation of social media platforms in showing them.
The live video provides a great way to connect with the audience, and the customers like it more as compared to the simple video.
8. Privacy will hold the key to success
Do you know that as per a KPMG survey, almost 55 percent of consumers change their purchase decisions against some products due to privacy concerns?
In other words, commitment toward protecting the privacy of the consumers will benefit marketers in 2018 and beyond. It is, therefore, necessary to keep privacy protection in mind while making digital marketing strategies.
9. Conversational interfaces will become a norm
Voice and AR/VR interfaces or conversational interfaces are here to stay. Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant, Cortana, and chatbots will find their place in the consumer’s daily lives. Brands can interact naturally with the consumers’ thanks to such interfaces.
65% of consumers feel good about themselves and the company when they can handle an issue without talking to a live person.
Chatbots facilitate consumers to get useful information or transaction assistance. Conversational interfaces will eventually bring the trend of voice marketing, which we will discuss later.
10. Personalized content is necessary
Every aspect of digital marketing is dependent on content in one or other way. Personalized content can attract and retain customers with ease, and lead them toward the purchase of products. Therefore, big brands will opt for personalized and unique content more than ever in 2018. We cannot rule out the possibility of the content-rich marketing campaigns combined with voice search, interactive tutorials, and featured snippets.
11. Inclusion of AI (Artificial Intelligence)
In a survey conducted by the Economist, almost 75 percent of business executives were of opinion that they will use AI actively in the business within the next three years.
How does AI help a digital marketing campaign? Well, chatbots and other interactive tools can give a real-time response to the customers’ queries and facilitate them to take a buying decision. Such tools can work on the basis of behavior analysis, and also, can relentlessly interact with multiple people at once.
12. IoT will increase RoI
The Internet of Things concept is replaced by the Internet of Everything. Yes, as per the Business Insider report, businesses will spend $5 trillion on IoT solutions by 2021.
Digital marketing experts need to utilize this concept for promoting products and services in an engaging way. As multiple connected ‘things’ remain close to the customers, it is easy for marketers to promote products using these things.
Also, IoT devices are relatively more affordable as compared to other instruments, and they can increase RoI.
13. Live Chat will gain ground
Do you know that customers want a business to be available 24/7? It is possible with technological advancements in AI and IoT technologies.
Today, the real-time response matters the most in taking the purchasing decisions, and therefore, Live Chat is in limelight. It gives a feeling to the customers that the business is always ‘ON’ for them.
14. The Rise of Contextual Targeting Strategies
Let’s face it! Cookies have failed to track user behavior effectively.
The rise of contextual targeting strategies will be largely attributed to the necessity for advertisers to understand the page context from the consumer viewpoint.
15. Localization is everywhere
In today’s mobile-driven era, localization plays a significant role in spreading brand awareness and boost the reputation of any business at the local level.
Companies seeking to increase their market share through enhancing overall engagement can opt for a localization approach. The digital marketers also implement native advertising strategy to get the most of localization. Native ads in the language of local people can provide an opportunity for viral sharing and improved penetration on the target market.
16. CX is a new trend
An ever-increasing competition in the digital world has compelled the marketers and entrepreneurs to focus on the Customer Experience (CX).
If any company aspires to embark on a digital transformation, CX will remain decisive in coming years. From transportation to education, and from retail to manufacturing, every industry sector needs to build and execute the CX strategy for improving customer experience.
17. Storytelling has a great future
No marketer would ignore the social media “stories” in the coming year. As the storytelling approach gains ground in social media networks, “stories” of Snapchat, Instagram Stories, and “Reels” from YouTube have started to become more powerful and prevalent than ever.
It is also possible that WhatsApp and Facebook will also jump on the ‘Stories’ bandwagon. Stories can capture the best moments form a day and they stay for a fixed time.
Their temporary stay is capable of creating a FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) feeling for users. Digital marketers can capitalize on stories to gain people’s attention.
18. Real-life experiences will join the party
In the year 2018 and beyond, the real-life experiences will be considered while making digital marketing strategy.
For example, the online experience starts just before any sport or a mega event and lasts during the event. In the near future, marketers will also experiment the same and make their campaigns more consumer-centric. Such campaigns are more capable of attracting people toward any brand.
19. Voice marketing will increase
As per Google, 20 percent of mobile searches are based on voice, and the number will increase gradually as the consumers will get used to asking Alexa and Siri for useful information.
The digital marketers need to concentrate on capturing voice searches and start giving ads on such platforms. In other words, voice marketing is all set to increase and the marketers must pay attention to it.
20. Marketing transformation is visible
Marketing is in expansion mode through including most of the customer engagement processes on every available platform.
The CMOs (Chief Marketing Officers) are busy in overhauling the process to make it more result-driven. Altogether, we can clearly see the transformation in marketing activities. There is no exaggeration in mentioning that digital marketing will become smarter, more intelligent, and inclusive in the coming time.
Apart from these major digital marketing trends, other SEO and content-related trends will also remain relevant in the years to come. Be it SEO campaigns or social media ads, proper content as per the context will hold the key to the success of any digital marketing efforts.
Here we go through some of the content-focused trends:
Position Zero is Hero
Do you know that Position Zero is the desired position for many companies when it comes to SERPs (Search Engine Ranking Pages)? It is because the business can appear above all other companies and even ads on the search page. This Position Zero or knowledge box is free from any traditional SEO rules and regulations.
Ranking and other parameters are not considered for selecting the company’s content on Position Zero. It makes this position even more challenging and interesting. Any company can grab this position with highly relevant, informative, and user-friendly content.
Along with this, new ways to utilize query-based content, rich snippets and schema can remain in focus throughout the year 2018 and beyond. We can state that digital marketing agencies will strive for gaining Position Zero for their clients in the near future.
Relevance is everything
Digital marketing companies follow the holistic approach to make the most of the online world. They design a strategy by combining SEO, SMO, PPC, and social media advertising as per the client’s business model and marketing trends.
All these forms require relevant and effective content that can target the customers globally. Blogs, videos, social media posts, email campaigns, and advertisements should be a part of a big marketing strategy.
Altogether, we can say that whether we want to conquer the mobile platform or desktop domain, relevant content is must for every digital marketing campaign. So, this trend will last for a long time.
Legal Stuff and Miscellaneous Trends
Do you remember GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation)? It is in force from May 25, 2018, and protects the privacy of European individuals. This regulation has brought a radical change in the process of gaining and sharing the customer’s personal information.
Both Google and Facebook are subject to country wise regulations as they deal with the user’s valuable data. Such legal rules and changes will keep on coming in 2018 and beyond.
Digital marketing companies need to design their marketing plan in accordance with the prevalent laws of the countries they are targeting. For example, countries like China and the US have stringent laws and the authorities of both these countries cannot tolerate any violation of their laws.
AI, IoT, AR, and other technologies are all set to bring radical changes in conventional digital marketing practices. Along with this, the user behavior and protection of their privacy will take center stage in the year 2018. It is interesting to see how digital marketers get adapted to these trends and come up with the strategies that address the marketing and branding requirements of their clients worldwide.
At Solwin Infotech, our expert digital marketers are well-versed in using the cutting-edge automated tools. With a vast experience of serving the global clientele across various industry sectors, our professionals can come up with the most customized digital marketing campaign to get an optimum output. Contact us to know more about the customized digital marketing campaign for your business.