Being in the Q4, you’re probably fully absorbed in your 2017 digital marketing strategy, analyzing your progress, finding what works and what doesn’t, what kind of campaigns deliver the highest ROI and what steps you should take next to keep growing your business. And it’s the best time to start planning your 2018 marketing strategy to get everything set for next year.
Why should you be doing it now? Well, because January will be here before you say “What happened?”. And you’ll find it hard to build your marketing plan between enjoying the next piece of your New Year’s pie and hanging out with friends or family.
Building your 2018 marketing strategy now rather than later will save you time and stress.
To help you out, we’ve conducted a research and put together 5 of the most important marketing trends to consider for 2018.
Providing Personalized Experiences for Your Audience
This year one thing is for certain - the king content is not going to be overthrown. It still tops the pile of your marketing resources, fuelling your communication with your audience through all channels.
But the key principle of Content Marketing is to shift from the traditional one-size-fits-all approach to a more dynamic and adaptive content, tailored to each customer’s specific needs. Rather than adopting a cookie cutter philosophy to your content, you should make sure to provide individualized messages, regardless of the type of your marketing campaign.
So how can you be sure that your content resonates with each of your customers individually?
For years marketers and bloggers have been publishing content targeted to generalized representations of their ideal customers, called buyer personas. But the technological advancement, namely Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning have made the job easier and way more efficient. Today, there are many advanced tools that enable you to create highly targeted and customized online campaigns, taking into account the geolocation, language and the stage of the customer lifecycle.
Embracing the Power of Micro-Moments
Harnessing the potential of micro-moments, especially on mobile, is one of the most important trends today. We all have that impulsive moments when we grab our phones to find nearby places where we can have a slice of pizza or surf the internet for that perfume a friend was talking about.
As a marketer, you need to identify these micro moments and be there to deliver value to your customers at the right moment and build competitive edge for your business.
In the age of instant communication, most users have their smartphones with them most of the time. As a result, billions of micro-moments happen on mobile every day. So you should devote enough thought to your mobile marketing strategy to capitalize on these micro-moments and increase your brand loyalty.
The best way to reach your customers instantly and generate maximum engagement is Text Message Marketing. Since around 97% of SMS messages are viewed only 3 minutes within delivery, it allows you to spur immediate interaction and bring a direct a pretty good amount of traffic to your retail store or website.
Putting the Accent on Visual Content
Text-based content always plays a pivotal role in your marketing strategy, but what really helps you stand out from the pack is your visual brand identity. 65% of people are visual learners and as a marketer, you should make sure to use visually-rich content to reap the rewards of higher returns in terms of customer engagement, followers, leads and finally, revenue.
Have you ever wondered why cat memes or commercials featuring famous people often go viral on the Internet? Well, it’s hard to find the exact answer to this question but one thing is for sure, this kind of content appeals to people visually and emotionally and sparks them to take action, in terms of likes and shares.
Enriching your content marketing campaign with visual elements, like images relating to your brand, insightful infographics and interesting videos will help you build an engaged community in social networks and take your business to the next level.
Raising a Team of Brand Ambassadors
Being one of the most efficient marketing strategies, word-of-mouth marketing is still having its “Social Media” effect. When you get a customer love your brand, they’re likely to recommend it to their friends, the friends who like your products will tell about it their friends… and so. The cycle continues and thrives with a snowball effect and doesn’t require any investment from your side. A happy customer will show dozens of new ones the way to your business and all you need to do is to make your customers feel confident enough in your brand to recommend it.
If you want to take full control over the process, you can start initiatives to get your customers spread the word about your products by offering them special perks in return. And if you want to take your Influencer Marketing campaign further, you can do so by hiring celebrities, bloggers or other “loud voices” of the Social Media to promote your brand. While the organic word-of-mouth can be developed at zero cost, Influential Marketing does require investments, however the returns will justify the cost.
More Emphasis on Multi-Channel Marketing
With so many devices and social platforms readily available to people, using a single marketing channel to reach out to customers is no longer enough. Some customers are more receptive to messages delivered via Facebook, Text Messages or email while others prefer TV and radio commercials.
The solution to place your brand in a winning position and get your messages across to your target audience is to incorporate different marketing channels in you strategy. It will give you the chance to engage, acquire and retain customers from different demographic groups according to their user behavior across social platforms.
Properly managing and tracking your multi-channel campaign, you’ll eventually find the right mix that delivers the best results at the lowest cost. In addition, you will gain insight about the interests and buying habits of your customers.
With 2018 already on the horizon, it’s time to look what’s in store for businesses and marketers. From creating interactive, personalized content to supercharging your brand with word-of-mouth marketing, keeping your finger on the pulse of the ever-changing marketing trends will help you get ahead of the pack and stay there.