Your organization or business has been up and running for a long time now. Life is good. Customers seem satisfied. Your processes and technology systems are sound. You have your eye on your competitors and the industry and your business model is stable.
Or is it?
It was only few years ago that technology, and business started changing faster than ever before. Social media was ignored by most except teenagers and early adopters.The web was in its infancy. Mobile phones were only for senior businessmen and the privileged few.
But today the world is an entirely different place. Social media, digital technology, and mobile apps are redefining business. Uber, for example, has the taxi monopolies and authorities scared. But their business model is not just about technology;it is about building a convenient and efficient service network and adding ever increasing value.
In this article we will explore some of the most disruptive digital marketing trends of 2015 and beyond that will be sure to affect, and if you’re not careful, disrupt your business. It’s time to get with the program!
Today, it is easy to get lost in the web of infinite media, digital channels, social networks, and data. There are a lot of moving parts and making sense of it all and taking calls to action can seem complex, even overwhelming. But there is a solution, and it is found in today’s technology.
Marketing used to be a purely creative field. While creativity is still a key component, technology is a vitally important additional element. Technological tools enable marketers to interpret data and design integrated marketing solutions targeted to very specific audiences. To make use of this technology, you need a digital marketing platform, a new approach, called “marketing automation.”
The good news is there are many options available. Hubspot, Ontraport, Infusionsoft, Social Sprout, Marketo,and Hootsuite are just a few. The list is growing and growing fast as companies drive the increasing demand for marketing automation solutions. It doesn’t matter whether you are a content marketer, social media marketer, or a digital marketer—to manage marketing at scale in a digital world requires a new breed of marketer and the use of a technologically adept marketing platform sooner rather than later.
Knowing more about your customer than they know about themselves is marketing power. Because your customers spend almost half their life online, getting to know them this intimately has now become a digital phenomenon. What do they like to read about? What do they like to watch? How do they feel about brands, issues, and current topics? Where do they shop online? What drives their purchase decisions? Language processing will identify influencers, customer preferences, and content that creates feelings of need and desire among potential customers. Data Analytics can provide much usable information about your customers and can identify influencers for certain topics and industries which in turn can help you analyze and forecast trends, changes in consumer preferences and sentiments, and much more.
Platforms such as BuzzSumo, Appinions and Simply Measured are all using data to help you calculate your next marketing move. These and others also help you understand and keep up with trending topics, habits, and content that your customers are interested in.
Data is great—we all know that. But what matters is what you do with the data. Making informed and calculated marketing decisions based on intelligent data is the marketer’s secret weapon.
Where do most of your customers spend about half of their time online? On social media sites of course. Facebook knows this. Linkedin and Twitter know this, as does every other social media platform on the web. This is why social media advertising has become big business. Facebook for example knows that building“likes”isn’t as important as it once was. But using its paid and highly targeted advertising data is.Now, re-targeting and Facebook’s custom audience features allow you to get a better return on your advertising budget. Facebook now dominates the worldwide social media advertising budget. It’s on target to hit over $14 billion in advertising revenue in 2015 and has become a serious rival to Google.
Measurement of ROI is gaining serious attention. That is why social media advertising platforms usually come with detailed statistics of advertising performance including reach, shares, impressions, engagement, and other measures that allow marketers to analyze, interpret, and improve their advertising strategies. Although Facebook is leading the race in the social media advertising space, other social networks still offer marketers valuable advertising opportunities that vary depending onthe specific type of business or service being advertisedwhile being narrowly targeted to the specific audience.
Targeted social advertising—on desktop, notebook, tablet, mobile, and whatever might appear in the future—is here to stay. If you have not included this in your advertising budget, we would suggest you re-evaluate your plans.
The growth of mobile advertising is astronomical.To put this in perspective, consider: 73% of Facebook’s $14 billion advertising revenue this year comes just from mobile advertising and it has barely begun to cash in on itsone billion users on WhatsApp, Instagram, and Messenger platforms. That is soon to change over the next few years.
Making mobile a priority in your marketing and media focus is imperative in today’s business and customer engagement ecosystem.You don’t need to go through a thorough research study to know that smart phones have now become extensions of the human body. Just go for a walk and see how most people are glued to their mobile phone screens to get the picture. However, you will need to consider that mobile requires a different approach in how you create your digital marketing assets and use the screen to display media and calls to action.
With mobile, less is more. What you want is for your customers to read about your offer or update, view a video, capture an email, or contact you. Enabling easy mobile purchasing and other transactions are features that add tremendous value to your products and services and build not only revenue, but customer loyalty.
We have been watching this trend for a few years now.Images, photos, embedded videos in social networks, and now streaming video (Facebook, Meerkat and Periscope) are changing the engagement landscape. People love taking pictures and viewing and sharing images. This has been enabled by the rapid rise of mobile phones with high-quality cameras that are now a standard feature on most new handsets.
Research indicates that an increase of more than 50% in engagement is experienced when a tweet includes an image or video as opposed to one without. This trend will only continue to grow as more people move to mobile as their primary computer screen and as developing countries gain more access toaffordable smartphones and accessible internet connectivity.
So, what marketing automation platforms are you considering? Is mobile on your advertising plan for next year? Are you already active in social media advertising and using Facebook’s targeted Ads? If not, you’re missing one of, if not the most important marketing trend in the last several decades. Don’t let digital marketing disrupt your business; take advantage of all it has to offer, becauseif you miss this trend, you probably won’t be around to miss the next.