In the past year, automation and mobile marketing have soared to new heights. And although they will continue to play a vital role in digital marketing in the future, big data, influencer marketing, and customer-centric experiences will become even more crucial. Here's what you should keep an eye out for in the coming year.
Personalized and Customer-Centric Experiences
Personalized content (also known as “smart content”) engages the right customer at the right time and is typically automated and triggered by specific behavior a user exhibits when they interact with your brand across mediums.In the upcoming year, brands will be dedicated to creating highly personalized experiences for every individual who engages with their products or services. If you're uncertain about implementing personalized and customer-centric experiences, take a moment to consider these compelling statistics:
- According to BCG, brands that create personalized experiences are seeing revenue increases from 6-10%, and two to three times faster than brands that don't use personalized experiences.
- Over 50% of consumers say they’re likely to switch brands if a company doesn’t make an effort to personalize communications specifically to them.
- Call-to-actions directed toward specific users did 42% better than generic call-to-actions, according to a recent Hubspot study.
Bespoke Shopping Experiences
Many marketers will begin to execute personalized content via new and improved artificial intelligence (AI) technology. Such technology will be programmed or utilized by marketers to do things like automatically offer targeted ads based on a user’s behavior or suggest other marketing content based on voice searches in search engines, or what users click on in real time, as well as what videos a user watches, etc.
Rise of the Machines
According to one Google study, 97% of business leaders feel the future of marketing will consist of clever human marketers working in collaboration with machine learning-based automation entities. Customer-centric marketers will also create content for micro-moment touchpoints with mobile technology.
Mobile traffic will continue growing
According to Google, up to 96% of users reach for their smartphones to get the information the moment they’re curious about something. This offers a mobile micro-moment opportunity for marketers. Competitive and successful brands will be able to anticipate and address the exact micro-moment needs of their users by quickly providing the right information to them at the right time.
Advanced Influencer Marketing
Digital marketers will strive to hold the reigns for influencer marketing as much as possible by petitioning and benefiting from important and well-known influencers. With social media, customer review platforms, email, and other technology, it’s easier than ever before for a positive review to spread like wildfire.
Celebrity lifestyle marketing
Having a celebrity, or a well-respected individual within your industry, endorse your products or services makes influencer marketing even more valuable for your business. Just think of the impact an endorsement from Bill Gates would have for a new software development company.
Influencer marketing is typically tied to social media outlets, since that’s where influencers will typically discuss what they think about a product or service. However, the landscape of influencer marketing is evolving, and new platforms are emerging as valuable channels for influencers to share their opinions and recommendations.
Influencers on YouTube: we're just getting started
One such platform is YouTube, which has become a powerhouse for influencer marketing. With millions of users watching videos on a daily basis, YouTube influencers have the ability to reach a massive audience and have a significant impact on their purchasing decisions. From beauty gurus to tech reviewers, YouTube influencers have established themselves as trusted voices in their respective industries.
Rise of the Podcasts (again)
Another platform that is gaining traction in influencer marketing is podcasts. With the rise in popularity of podcasts, influencers are leveraging this medium to share their expertise and recommendations. Listeners often develop a personal connection with podcast hosts and value their opinions, making it an ideal platform for influencers to promote products or services.
Dark social will continue to gain traction
Don’t forget that users and influencers are still sharing content with others across mediums that aren’t typically monitored (e.g., messaging apps, personal email accounts, native mobile apps, secure browser windows). Marketers are beginning to dub this type of content sharing as “dark social.” Reports determined that dark social is responsible for 84% of outbound sharing, which indicates this is not an area to ignore.
Businesses shouldn’t only strive to gain influencers and track influencer social media engagement and web analytics, or they may dramatically underreport the value of their influencer marketing efforts. To find what works best for your business, consult with digital marketing companies in NYC or wherever you see fit.
Use Big Data to get an edge on the competition
According to research conducted by Smart Insights, Big Data is the second most important thing marketers are concerned with for their 2018 goals and objectives—second only to content marketing. Now, marketers expect to build marketing plans using customer data for “actionable insight.”
Marketers collect user data from all mediums (e.g. websites, email campaigns, social media, and others) to determine what technologies, content, and techniques they should use when personalizing their customers’ and prospects’ experiences.
Tailored content and social shopping
They will strive to eliminate as much guess work as possible when tailoring content for their customers and prospects. With big data, marketers will have a much clearer idea of what content is being engaged with the most, in addition to where and when and by whom. This will allow marketers to design better customer channels and funnels, tailored to exactly what they want and when they want it.
According to IDC, the big data industry is worth around $102 billion, which means most businesses will be using big data over the course of the next couple years to do things like enhance their marketing efforts.
To achieve significant returns on your digital marketing efforts this year, it is crucial to leverage big data and cutting-edge technologies that enable real-time personalization of your content. Additionally, building a formidable network of influencers across all channels, including the less visible ones, is paramount. If you want to maximize your success, we also suggest seeking external assistance. BlueSwitch, the premier ecommerce agency in NYC, is well-equipped to support your business!