Every year there are always new buzzwords that most digital marketers come across. Through our research and expertise in the industry we have selected the top trends for 2019.
AI Machine Learning
Experts believe AI will add nearly £12 trillion to the global economy by 2030, and 20% of companies are already planning to incorporate AI throughout their companies next year.
Although there may still be some time before robots are creating content, Machine learning is already proving highly efficient as it’s reduced the level of work needed to manage and optimize ad targeting, bids, and budgets. This shift has improved the quality of traffic and simplified the ad buying process overall. Both the Facebook and Google algorithm changed last year and it now rewards advertisers who adhere to their best practices.
So what does this mean? Advertisers are now shifting their focus and resources away from manual bidding adjustments towards creative strategy, content, production and optimisation. Machine learning ultimately allows an advertiser to become more efficient and spend more time on both analysis and strategy to enable accounts to drive a much higher ROI.
Content marketing continues to be an essential component of digital marketing. Remember, ‘content is king’.
Although the frequency of content will have an impact your organic ranking, the quality of content is most important. Not only will high quality content assist in driving users to your website organically but engaging social content is also a key focus of 2019.
Having a deeper, more sophisticated understanding of a targeted market and being able to target that demographic more precisely is a rising trend in more effective marketing. So while general audience content was, is, and always will be important, specialised material for specific industries or experts can also yield impressive results. Combined that measuring the impact each type of content has will help put together a strong content strategy.
If you want to stand out in 2019, you need to personalize your marketing – and that means personalized content, products, emails, and more.
With the availability of data like purchase history and consumer behavior, custom content has never been easier. In fact, 96% of marketers believe that personalization advances customer relationships.
Companies like Amazon and Netflix are already utilising personalisation. For example, after you log on to your Netflix account, you can immediately see a banner, carousels, order, artwork, text and search are all personalized for you.
With a host of smart devices using voice assistants such as Siri, Google and Alexa, and a , verbal interaction with devices is continuing to rise. Talking seems to be a preferred way of interacting and now technology is finally catching up to the way people want to search, shop, and discover new things.
However, this presents some interesting challenges. Conducting a voice search is very different from typing a query, particularly in the results. When a person performs a text-based search, the screen displays one page the results one page at a time. But when someone asks a device to conduct a search and the device replies verbally, it usually provides one choice and on occasion a small selection. That means that preparing for voice searches is going to require a different approach, but it’s one area of digital marketing that can’t be ignored because people are relying on it now more than ever.
For example, writing meta-descriptions of websites might need to be optimized for speech so that it “reads better” out loud, when being spoken, rather than the drier style used for a strictly text-based search approach. Here are some interesting stats around voice search:
- 50% of all searches will be voice searches by the year 2020
- 20% of mobile queries on Google are voice searches
- 25% of all Bing searches are voice searches
Chatbots will continue to be an important part of digital marketing in 2019. This AI-based technology uses instant messaging to chat in real-time 24/7 with site visitors or your customers. Research has shown that 80% of businesses are already using or plan to use chatbots by 2020 and by 2022, chatbots will help businesses save over $8 billion per year.
Many customers prefer interacting with chatbots as they are responsive, give answers promptly, accurately recall your entire buying history, and never lose patience. These virtual assistants can offer outstanding customer service, meeting customers’ expectations and reduce staff workload allowing them to focus on more important tasks through automation.
Uber uses a chatbot to communicate with customers, simplifying the process of hiring cars , even through platforms such as Google Maps, Slack and Facebook Messenger. Passengers can choose the type of car, track the location of the car, send friends a time estimate of their arrival and even pay from their phone.
Video should be incorporated into all digital marketing strategies as;
- Videos generate 12,000% more engagement than image and text ads combined
- 80% of users recall a video ad they have viewed online in the past month
- Video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80%
- Video ads make up 35% of online spend
- 87% of marketing professionals use video as a marketing tool
Live video is also gaining popularity, with a large number of businesses using it to showcase demos, for interviews, “behind the scenes” glimpses of events or sometimes just a creative approach to engage their target audience.
YouTube videos can also be found in the SERPs, so video SEO is becoming much more important, so make sure you are using text overlays in addition to your description, title and file names.
With ever-decreasing costs of film equipment and the increasingly high-quality smartphone cameras, video content is becoming much easier and faster to produce.
Using influencers is a very effective marketing tool that works to attract new customers. Influencers can be anyone from celebrities, well known bloggers, or YouTube stars who help spread the word about your business or product through their social channels.
Because people generally trust consumer opinions over corporate statements, frozen food retailer Iceland “ditched celebrities in favour of real people, tapping into a dedicated community of micro-influencers” like “real mums”. After partnering with Channel Mum, Iceland’s approval ratings increased from 10% to 80%, which was a 72% increase above the agreed digital KPIs.
Micro-influencers have a small yet highly-engaged followership (usually around 500-20,000). Often they are already your customers, resulting in authentic, trustworthy promotion. And, crucially, micro-influencers are far cheaper to work with than the so-called “celebrity”.
But why so great? They are relatable, like minded, easier to connect with and more affordable which leads to higher engagement rates.
Today’s consumer uses multiple channels both online and offline to research, compare, buy from and interact with businesses.
Omnichannel marketing is a type of marketing that connects the dots between multiple channels, ensuring a consistent user experience and encouraging the consumer to engage with your brand at every touchpoint across multiple channels.