2019 is nearly upon us, and if you think that 2018 went fast, the world of marketing has gone even faster. Marketers have been used to the landscape changing rapidly over the last few years, mainly thanks to technology, and this looks to continue into next year and beyond.
Social media will continue to change the way we communicate; video content will likely rise in popularity. While the following are only predictions, one thing is certain; the ever-changing digital marketing landscape will keep us all on our toes for another quick year.
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Integration with smart homes
The automated home kicked off with the simple, smart speaker, will soon be the standard. Programming the various elements of your home from your phone while you are out and automating operation will become more common, and that will present a new range of opportunities for digital marketing.
Voice controlled technology, like the speakers, will lead to audio content and ads via these platforms. So, voice over artists may have a lot more work coming their way!
Watching the Internet
The time that people spend watching things online is nearly neck and neck with the time they spend in front of the TV. Mobile video hours are increasing as well, and with sites like YouTube starting to release their own shows via the platform, you can bet that the scales will eventually tip the internet’s way.
The result of this will be less marketing on television and cinema advertising and more advertising via the web, especially on video content.
Social media continues to grow
The integration of social media accounts with third-party applications will evolve, and more users will flock to the platforms purely for ease across the internet. Why not have a Facebook account when it means no more sign up forms on other websites? This offer of seamless access to the world wide web using your established profile is the way in which platforms like Facebook and Instagram will maintain their stronghold. Now more than ever, a business’s social media strategy will determine their success.
Have you noticed how every major platform now has provisions for live video? It’s because people watch it, lots of people. Live video is the next step in connection, people feel more involved if they are watching it when it happens, plus there is that exciting level of unpredictability.
We expect to see the world of influencers combine with live video even more; people will be compelled to buy products when they see them advertised by their heroes to the minute. Think about it like the return of the infomercial across social media and expect big things in this space.
The flow on to video content
We’ve mentioned that people watch more things online and that live video is growing, well the common link is video content. Over half of social media users watch video via platforms currently, and that number will only increase. Video advertising will be more effective, and the production quality of the ads will need to raise the bar a little to keep up with the competition.
The running of video ads on YouTube and Instagram is already proven as an effective channel and marketing departments may want to consider how to produce quality video content in-house, as there will be a lot more of it required next year.
It would appear that every futuristic sci-fi movie got it right, virtual reality is rising in popularity and quality very quickly. Expect to see a further advance in the combination of VR and mobile apps. The abilities of mobile phones will expand the opportunities in this space past simple gaming, and retail stores or product demos will become more in depth, so to will the ways in which things can be advertised.
Like it or not, influencer marketing is proving to be one of the most effective channels around. So while this means more insta-celebrities are being created, it also cannot be ignored by marketers. As this space grows, however, it will become more important to be diligent about how blatant your product placement is. There is a slim line between seemingly organic and staged and consumers will be warier as the advertisements grow in number.
An ongoing brand relationship with an influencer is an excellent way to avoid having to worry about deception. It’s like hiding in plain site and more akin to the traditional style of product ambassadors, just funneled through modern channels.
Fingers on the marketing pulse
Digital marketing is expanding and the internet is keeping marketers on their toes by creating and disposing of trends constantly. This causes problems because the question of effectiveness comes into play, which trends to you invest in and which do you ignore? Staying up-to-date with not only the trends, but how they perform is the only way to navigate this potential minefield. You also need to keep across the things that aren’t changing, like good SEO and SEM.
The best way to keep in the know requires a strategy that should consider the following points:
- Assume you are always still learning about digital marketing
- Keep up to date with various marketing forums, the chatter of the industry is always a great way to see where things are headed
- Attend conferences; they are both informative and excellent networking opportunities
Above all, digital marketers need to settle into the fact that their job is always changing. The rapid evolution of the industry requires you to be alert at all times, ready to chase trends and try to stay at the forefront of everything. If you adopt this mindset and approach, everything will be alright.