5 Trends In Marketing We’re Absolutely Expecting To See In 2018
This post is a guest post by Victoria Greene, brand consultant and freelance writer.
It’s a new year, and trend forecasters have been predicting the marketing trends that are set to transform 2018.
Throughout last year, we saw an explosion of A.I tools that can be implemented at every stage of the production cycle. Everything from automated customer service bots, to smart RFID tags, are going mainstream.
A.I technologies are currently revolutionising businesses across the globe. In fact, it has never been easier to automate in-house processes and outsource specialised tasks to virtual assistants.
But what will this year hold for marketing and the remote working industry? This post will outline five trends in marketing we’re expecting to see in 2018.
Powerful Influencers Dominating Sales
People buy from people they trust, and you can bet that most people follow influential personalities on social media.
Whether its an A-lister, or a hobbyist blogger with 2,000 fans, millions of us check our favourite influencer’s posts every single day. And further, many of us would have taken more than a passing interest in the products and services they promote on their pages.
Marketplaces like Shout Cart allow brands to bid for promotion from leading accounts. You can search any niche and find a suitable blogger/personality to boost your profile. Best of all, you can get your VA to find suitable candidates, even if you have a tiny budget.
The explosion of influencer services like this has made it easier than ever to put your products in front of thousands of interested leads.
Video Marketing Is Everywhere, But Now It’s Live
Video marketing was a staple for advertisers in 2017. Through Instagram Stories and SnapChat, brands were able to successfully seed links and create short, low-budget videos to draw in more clicks and sales. However, this year, businesses should be looking for new and creative ways to attract regular online audiences...
In 2018, live video is set to become an increasingly vital marketing channel.
The beauty of live feed video (as opposed to short 10-second clips) is that you can really expand your marketing messages. Get into the nitty-gritty of how your product was developed, and how it solves a unique set of problems on a live stream.
The content doesn’t have to be scripted or expensive to produce, it can be filmed through an app like Periscope from a smartphone. As long as the discussion points are exciting and relevant to your viewer's lives, you can captivate your audience’s attention for upwards of 30 minutes at a time.
You can also record the stream and post it to your YouTube channel afterwards, for future promotion. Host an interview, do some qualitative research on your subject, and get filming!
The benefit of building up a big bank of videos in 2018 is the potential your brand has for becoming a thought leader in your industry. You can film from any location, or hire a VA to carry out your campaigns on your behalf.
If you are considering setting up live streams with the help of a virtual assistant, check out this post on communicating effectively with your VA.
Data Sources Expand Further Still
Many people associate the word big data with marketing as we become increasingly aware of how we can use detailed analytical data to improve our marketing campaigns.
For many business owners, making sense of all of this insight has remained a bit of an overwhelming task. However, in 2018, this is set to change.
There are now many available tools that allow you to combine multiple traffic sources (social media, organic traffic etc.) and overlay them onto your CRM system. The rise of in popularity of SaaS ecommerce hosts like Shopify has made data insights and data tools accessible to even the smallest of businesses, who are now able to automate their marketing and become more autonomous.
From a campaign-building perspective, data tools are designed to make decision-making easier. Your sales staff, for instance, can schedule calls with regular customers based on their buying and online interaction data.
Personalisation Becomes The Norm
Whether you’re crunching the numbers in your analytics, or setting up dedicated personalisation apps from your online storefront, make your marketing tailored.
Think further than using the visitor’s first name in your interactions.
- With automated messenger bots running through your Facebook profile, you can set up personalised product recommendations based on user responses. Consider optimising the experience by tailoring bundles of products for previous customers.
- From a content marketing perspective, you can also find ways to present personalised information in the awareness stage.
- Get personal with your scope of interest. What keeps your customers up at night? How can you simultaneously help and present an attractive, bespoke deal?
Value-Adding Opportunities For Community Management
Becoming a trusted source of information is a crucial part of demonstrating your credibility as a brand in 2018. If you provide information for free, you’re more likely to be remembered in the future. This will help you close the deal when you’re ready to push more direct sales messages.
- Social media monitoring tools can help VA’s answer customer questions and queries easily. Being prompt and transparent with your customer service complaints will help you build long-term trust with consumers.
- Building social proof also means keeping up-to-date with the latest happenings in your industry. Social media monitoring tools and sites like Feedly and Google Alerts help brands track industry-related online conversations. The idea is to get your VAs to jump in where they can and guide people towards your content.
There you have five major marketing trends that are set to take over 2018. To make the most of the new technologies and mediums trending this year, take the time to crunch the numbers.
Victoria Greene is a brand consultant and freelance writer. She posts regularly at Victoriaecommerce.com
Her blog is dedicated to helping business owners make the most of their marketing spend.