2018 has finally arrived, and with it, a shift in digital marketing. New trends that peaked in the end of 2017 are arriving with a bang and with the aim to take over the new year. It’s not too late to address and plan for the year ahead but companies need to now pay attention to all the latest trends to ensure competitive lead. This year, digital marketing is looking to make businesses (including SMEs) more visible by reaching larger and wider audiences. Innovation and interaction will no longer just be an option and voice search marketing will be the king for large enterprises. Here are the hot’s and not’s the marketing team have predicted here in Why Media for 2018.
With the integration of augmented reality into smartphone devices, such as the new iPhone X, and even into emoji’s, it only makes sense that this will be heavily integrated into other digital platforms such as social media. Augmented reality is an engaging and innovative way of communicating with consumers. Mobile apps such as Pokemon Go pioneered with this and big brands such as Facebook, Google and Instagram will most certainly join this new year. It will be very interesting to see how these new features will be used for commercial matters by businesses.
Despite the great ethical debate in 2017 due to the increase in the ads served on a daily basis on different digital platforms, businesses are becoming more creative in the ways these ads are showcased. In 2018, ads will become more specific, more targeted and more interactive. We have seen a great increase in video ads and this will largely grow in the year to come. Social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram are bringing in new ways in which these ads are displayed and businesses will most certainly be benefited through investing in digital adverts, it will only be about who does it best and most creatively.
Facebook is shifting to a fully paid platform for companies. The digital giant has already began to eliminate all company social media posts in some countries from the News Feed over to Explore, a secondary stream only for business updates. If your business wishes to reach their audience through the News Feed it will most certainly have some cost. However, Facebook continues to be a great platform to target the right audience at the right time with precision, so investing in social media costs will most certainly be money well spent.
While almost all social media platforms showed steep steady growth in 2017, Twitter failed to follow. The social platform changed the character count from 140 to 280 with the hope of reviving the user base numbers but with no great success. Meanwhile though, LinkedIn brought great numbers of improvements to the platform, especially when it comes to how businesses advertise. In 2018, the professional platform will be welcoming new features mainly targeted to company sales teams with improvements in lead collection and InMail. Great things are expected of LinkedIn in the new year and we are very eager to find out more!
Live videos offer great benefits to businesses who are eager to improve communication with their customers. People no longer want to see shaky, selfie-like live streams, but professional live streams with good quality image and movements, this is why in 2018 businesses need to be open into investing into marketing professionals who understand how to achieve the best possible live video.
Voice search was king of innovation in 2017, with Google, Amazon and Apple releasing their on voice search pods. It was immediately obvious that voice marketing and conversational user interfaces arrived to stay long-term. According to Google, 20% of its mobile queries are searched through voice control and the use of chatbots have rapidly increased over the past few years. Marketing spend on voice-powered digital assistants is predicted to reach $19 billion by 2022 , businesses will create content that will be easily searched via voice search and advertising will most certainly also move on to non-traditional places. This brings great opportunity for businesses to engage with customers as conversational interactions allow natural communication for customers that are looking for information or entertainment.
Marketing automation is an easy way to manage they way and the extent in which businesses communicate with their customers, however, relying on it heavily makes a brand feel obviously inhuman. In order to be ahead of competitors in 2018 brands need to maintain and show a human factor, whether it’s in social media, email marketing or advertising, at least 50% of the time. Making your customers feel like the only one rather than one in a million is the way forward in 2018.
We all know by now of the importance video marketing has been gaining in the digital marketing sector. It is becoming the most popular and effective of content for businesses online, and mainly on social media. It’s an easy, engaging and creative way of getting the brand message across as the attention span of customers continues to decrease. Creating a quality, creative and engaging video in 2018 will be the marketing activity with highest ROI for businesses.
Sinead Nelson Artano, Junior Account Manager at Why Media comments:
“Technological advances and customer behaviour have made the scope of engaging and interacting with customers digitally boundless, and only businesses that truly focus in nurturing and developing these communications in an innovative way will succeed in 2018.”