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Online Marketing Trends for 2018

https://buildfire.com/small-business-marketing-trends-2017-from-experts/

With consumers and markets constantly evolving, it is important to stay up-to-date with
the current marketing trends in order to stay ahead of your competition. This is particularly true in recent years with the dramatic growth of technology and internet usage. Just a short time ago, concepts such as user tailored ads, social media marketing, and automated marketing did not exist. Whereas now, they make up an increasingly large portion of the marketing field. So,here are some marketing trends that we witnessed in the past year as well as some to look for in the year to come.

Before we ushered in 2017, several sources were already anticipating the changes that
we would see in the field of marketing this year. Here are some examples from two Forbes
Magazine articles by Jason DeMers and AJ Agrawal.

  • Live Video Streaming
    ○ Companies are able to interact with the customer in real time
    ○ More platforms such as Instagram and Facebook are adding live video to their
    sites
    ○ More content is being streamed online, even the United States’ first presidential
    debate was streamed online
  • Data Visualization Tools
    ○ So much data is collected that it is nearly impossible for a person to process
    ○ Software that allows this data to be viewed in a manageable way is key
  •  Native Advertising
    ○ Consumers often ignore or even resent traditional advertisements
    ○ Native ads blend in with a website’s content and therefore are more likely to be
    clicked
  • Targeting More Niche Markets
    ○ Due to increased competition in digital marketing, in order to be noticed, companies need to target smaller audiences on more specific topics
  • Personalization
    ○ Marketers use preferences and history to further tailor advertisements to the user
    interests in order to attract likely customers
  • More Immersive Experience
    ○ New technology such as virtual reality, augmented reality (such as Pokémon Go),
    360 is emerging
    ○ This makes users feel immersed in the moment rather than merely staring at a
    screen

http://observer.com/2015/07/new-augmented-reality-totemapp-combo-makes-music-an-experience-to-hear-see-and-feel/
  • More Dense Content
    ○ Low attention spans and large amounts of content make it easy for consumers to
    filter out content
    ○ The limited time of exposure makes it so every word counts
  • Interactive Content
    ○ Gets the consumer involved rather than watching passively
    ○ Buzzfeed quizzes and Hulu interactive ads are examples
  • Influencer Marketing
    ○ Using celebrities and social media personalities to advertise products
    ○ Millennials are distrustful of traditional advertisements, only 1% trust the products
    they see in ads (Huffington Post)
    ○ They are much more likely to trust someone they follow on social media
  • Mobile Video
    ○ Mobile video views grew six times faster than desktop in 2015 and exceeded
    desktop views in Q4 of the same year
    ○ Content creators are focusing more on optimizing videos for mobile-viewing
  • Chat bots
    ○ Chat bots are programs that automatically generate human-like messages and
    content
    ○ Often used for customer service purposes
    ○ Facebook uses chatbots to create repetitive content such as news updates and
    more
  • Short Lived Content
    ○ Snapchat ushered in the idea of disappearing or short lived content
    ○ Content on the app disappears after a day, causing users to continuously check
    the app
    ○ Appeals to the short attention span of millennials and Generation Z
  • Mobile Priority
    ○ Mobile leads desktop in traffic so marketers will soon be primarily focused with
    mobile optimized content
    ○ Integrated for the user on the go
  • Marketing Automation
    ○ Allows marketers to easily do repetitive tasks such as newsletters without using
    any manpower
    ○ Popular apps include Marketo and Hubspot
  • Purpose Driven Marketing
    ○ Pairing with a charity or non-profit in order to “give back”
    ○ Resonates with consumers emotionally
    ○ Consumers associate the company with the cause and believe they are helping
    by making a purchase
  • Data Driven Marketing
    ○ Marketers will become more reliant on data to measure the success of their
    campaigns
  • Social Media Marketplace
    ○ Several social media platforms have added the ability to make purchases directly
    through the site through “buy” buttons
    ○ This turns social media into a marketplace to actually sell goods rather than just
    advertise
  • Adoption of IOT (Internet of Things)
    ○ Everyday items are connected to the internet in order to become better integrated
    with consumers
    ○ NEST Thermostat, for example, allows users to control their thermostat directly
    from their smartphone

https://www.iowacomputergurus.com/Solutions/Internet-of-Things

Now, as we come closer to 2018, market analysts are beginning to predict what changes
we will see in the coming year. Some trends are continuations of what we saw in 2017 while
others are new. In an article for the Huffington Post, Rougeyar Perry suggested that we would
see the following:

  • Livestreaming
    ○ As we saw in 2017, livestreaming popularity will continue to rise in the new year
    ○ Consumers watch live videos three times as long as pre recorded ones
    ○ Social media platforms will continue to improve their livestream capabilities
  • Mobile Video
    ○ Again, the popularity of advertising through mobile videos will continue to rise
    ○ Mobile video ad spending is expected to skyrocket to $18 billion in 2018,
    exceeding desktop (Recode)
    ○ The average consumer is expected to watch mobile video nearly twice as much
    as video on a computer, 36 minutes in comparison to 19 minutes

https://www.recode.net/2017/7/17/15981376/mobile-video-consumption-25-percent-in-2018-online-video-peaks
  • Growth Hacking
    ○ Tactics such as SEO (search engine optimization) will have increased
    importance in 2018
    ○ As search engines continue to evolve, your strategy to maintain visibility must
    also
  • Explainer Videos
    ○ Explainer videos give a brief description of a company or product
    ○ Consumers are four times more likely to watch a video than read text on a
    website that contains an explainer video
  • Chat bots
    ○ The popularity of chat bots will continue to rise in 2018
    ○ An estimate 85% of consumer interactions will be with chatbots by 2020
  • Viral Content
    ○ Companies will try to make brand awareness by producing content that will go
    viral
    ○ By doing this, a company’s content will get passed from user to user and they do
    not need to pay from the content to be shown in the form of an ad
    ○ Also, this causes consumers to have a positive view of the company as the
    associate it with something they enjoyed seeing
  • Geofencing
    ○ Geofencing is the tracking of a person’s whereabouts through their smartphone
    by recording when they enter or leave particular areas called geofences
    ○ Marketers use this to send consumers information such as promotions when the
    user is in a place where that information in beneficial
  • Micro Influencers
    ○ Marketers will try to reach audiences in social media through profiles with a
    smaller following (1,000 to 100,000 followers)
    ○ Consumers see the posts by these people as more genuine that macro
    influencers and are therefore likely to be interested in the product
    ○ 90% of consumers trust peer recommendation while only 33% trust traditional
    ads
  • Brand Blog
    ○ In order to connect with consumers, many companies may create their own blog
    ○ Similar to the effect of viral content, this allows companies to get their message
    out through content that consumers are interested in view willingly

The marketing field is transforming every day. In current times, as technology continues
to progress, these changes are coming faster than ever. Therefore, in order to stay relevant to a modern audience, it is important to take these changes into account and incorporate them into your marketing strategy, in order to stay ahead of your competition.

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