To succeed in marketing, one must be far-sighted.
This means that you need to be aware of trends that are likely to be significant over the next 12 months. Modern technology is developing rapidly. Naturally, trends rely on these technologies. However, there is still opposition to digitization and automation in the interactions between brands and consumers.
For those who are in a hurry and already “in the subject”, we briefly list the main trends:
- Marketing will be based on customer experience, involving employees in programs to promote the business in the market and visualization of content to enhance the impact on consumers.
- Actually, the very definition of what we consider “marketing” has continued to transform and is ever-expanding.
- Marketing has long gone beyond branding and advertising. Marketers should work together with other departments to focus on creating an excellent customer experience and attracting them for long-term relationships.
2020 will be the year of the customer. Today you should not invest in marketing programs that will impose goods and services. It makes no sense to impose purchases, the customer is sufficiently aware of what he needs.
Instead, it is necessary to shift the priority of providing excellent customer service, which will force customers to return for new orders. In a sense, the main trend can be formulated: entrepreneurs should focus on building a positive business culture and providing exceptionally high-quality services, and marketers are required to transform business ideas into adequate marketing strategies.
Content marketing has changed consumers. The growth of useful and freely accessible content has given people more opportunities. They no longer depend on consultants and can pre-examine the product on the market. Consumers are active and do not expect advice from sellers, which is better for them. Instead, they search the Internet for information, read reviews, and evaluate the offer before purchasing. Formally, a modern client relies on his judgments on his “ marketing research ”. Therefore, marketers need to offer something more than information.
Customer experience has long been the most popular expression in marketing circles.
But do companies really provide fantastic customer service?
What influences the formation of customer experience? The pleasure of the money spent by the client, the convenience of the purchase, the competent and friendly service, the convenient payment methods are what people value in their experience in interacting with companies.
To achieve this, marketers need:
- Modern technologies based on data on the purchase process
- Personalization of commercial offer
- Mobile technologies for quick contact with the client
- Strong brand image in the minds of consumers
- Product design tailored to customer needs
In other words, customer experience must be present in the marketing strategy. Sales should be planned to take into account customer loyalty and the life cycle of goods and services.
Employee Involvement in Marketing Programs
If efficient and friendly service is the cornerstone of marketing, the question arises: “How can companies achieve this?” Obviously, enterprise personnel should actively participate in the process of quality service. If employees are poorly trained and do not have the necessary qualifications, the client will be dissatisfied and are unlikely to return.
What prevents staff from becoming active? Poor attitude towards employees by managers is the number one factor that prevents customers from dealing with a reliable company.
Staff is the face of the brand, so attention should be focused on the interaction of employees with customers. This is an important factor in any marketing strategy.
The key to employee engagement is the adoption of proactive measures that allow each employee to understand the business goals and brand values. When a manager hires a person, they plan to make the person responsible for providing quality customer service. It is necessary to provide measures that will ensure that personnel will strive for the success of the company as responsibly as its owner.
Otherwise, employees will no longer care about customers. If they are not satisfied with the work and do not believe in how the business is conducted, they will not succeed in achieving a positive customer experience.
Modern technologies allow you to use voice search and broadcast content through the dynamics of devices. However, visual content cannot be neglected.
Studies have proven that people prefer visual images to dry text. The explosive growth of interest in Instagram and Tik Tok has clearly shown the importance of visualization.
5 vital facts about visual content:
- 65% of Internet users prefer to watch instructional videos
- 80% increased desire to read an article if it contains colour illustrations
- 85% more likely to make purchases after watching a product video
- 93% of communications are through visual content
- 180% increase in coverage if the post contains spectacular illustrations
Visual elements are easier to remember than text. Adding data visualization, infographics, images and video to printed text not only makes it more interesting and attractive but also helps to better perceive the transmitted message.
Lead generation and technological progress have already had a huge impact on the level of personalization that needs to be extended to consumer interaction with brands.
Modern consumers are awash with advertising messages from several communication channels. To relieve themselves, what are they doing? Consumers begin to selectively turn off uninteresting channels. Therefore, traditional advertising is losing its effectiveness. Personalization of marketing messages can correct the situation and establish a real connection between the brand and the target market.
If 10-15 years ago it was hard to imagine that emails would begin with an address by name, today it is a reality. Specialized resources have learned to recognize the recipient of messages not only by name but also take into account his interests and the level of involvement in the transaction.
The use of artificial intelligence in combination with advanced data collection and analysis of social networks made it easy and simple to personalize everything from content to design, including product recommendations.
Transformation of Strategic Marketing
Each time you read an article about trends, you might get the impression that by using tips and best practices, it’s easy to succeed in marketing.
Far from it, marketing is getting more complicated. Every year, it is becoming increasingly difficult to develop marketing programs related to the reasons for the development of the business as a whole. The goals of promotion are becoming more complicated, marketing communications are being layered, and the challenges facing marketers are becoming more difficult and responsible.
Previously, in small businesses, each company leader was a “marketing expert ” for himself, but today more and more entrepreneurs are turning to specialists for practical advice. It is difficult to imagine modern business without specific goals and programs of clear marketing communications. Marketing planning itself has become an integral part of running a business.
Strategic marketing is based on baseline data on the target market, the use of digital technologies, building relationships with customers, strengthening their presence on the Internet. Such a transformation helps small businesses improve customer service, increase brand awareness and reputation. As a result, strategic marketing increases revenues and profits.
A marketing plan sets goals and determines the tactics of promoting a business on the market, which will be based on content marketing, SEO, Email newsletters, social networks, contextual advertising, and offline marketing. The working paper should clearly state how each part of the marketing communications will work for the interests of the business.
The transformation of strategic marketing is changing the attitude of each employee to the final results. The reputation of the company, relations with customers, their level of service is no longer the exclusive responsibility of the marketer. Each employee must understand that the success of the company depends on the performance of their duties. One unsuccessful and untimely word of an ordinary performer and the business will receive a cloud of negative reviews.
Zero Position in Search Results
Search Engine Optimization will remain an important aspect of digital marketing, but now we are witnessing one of the most significant changes in the SEO industry over the past decade. With the growth of mobile and voice search, people are changing the way they use search engines such as Google and Bing. Now, being the first in the search is not an end in itself.
You yourself probably noticed that your own search and browse mode has changed over the past few years. Now the website user is looking for the most current information. Highlighted fragments and other information “in the SERP” means that we do not need to go to the website in order to receive an answer to our request. The answer may be directly on the search results page.
This information from the search results may appear in different places, but the most requested position is right at the top of the page, before the SERP listing. This position was called “zero”. Since this is often the only information that the user can view, it is very welcome. According to Google, more than 60% of search results are now zero position search results.
Brands are still trying to figure out how to achieve a zero position in search results because it requires SEO methods different from those used for regular SERP listing. If you can be the first in your industry, you will have a huge advantage over your competitors. So expect to see more SEO companies offering this service over the next year, and look at best practices for optimizing your content.
Voice search does not show signs of slowing growth, and it will continue to have a significant impact on how leading brands create content and position themselves on the Internet.
It is difficult to agree with the statement that this year 50% of search queries will be carried out by voice (according to Google, currently about 20%). But the trend is obvious. The business of smart speakers is booming.
According to PwC global research, consumers expect more use of voice search in the near future. 61% of those 25–64 years old already using a voice device intend to use it more often.
Artificial Intelligence in Marketing Automation
Over the past few years, there have been major changes in the field of artificial intelligence (AI). Progress in this direction was taken by many companies; they began to use AI-based technologies to automate and strengthen their marketing programs. Smart chatbots, contextual advertising management, voice search are examples of AI implementation, which we encounter more and more.
Big-data analytics helps companies learn more about their target audience and customers. This enables the hyper-personalization of marketing messages on a large scale. Large brands, using AI technology, strengthen their market position, release resources and focus on customer experience, adjusting their marketing strategy for it.
In order to keep up, small businesses need to switch to the automation of routine marketing processes and increase their productivity.
Focus on Customer Retention and Building Loyalty
Regular customers are more valuable than new customers. Studies have shown that attracting a new customer is five times more expensive than keeping a loyal customer. That is why the need to provide high-quality services and the formation of excellent customer experience is economically justified.
The efforts of companies should be distributed in such a way as to not only constantly seek new customers, but on a regular basis to prove their need for regular customers.
For their part, loyal customers contribute to increasing the reputation and brand awareness, as they will talk about your company with their surroundings. Satisfied clients become lawyers of the company and are ready to give recommendations regarding the choice of a service provider.
The live video industry is on the rise. Live streams are incredibly popular among consumers, and people spend three times as much time watching such content as they do on pre-mounted videos. This affects the effect of complicity in an interesting and important event.
This promotion technique has become the most popular way to familiarize consumers with a company’s product. Such content is the most attractive, as the audience is part of the process and can partly influence it, moving from a state of passive viewing to active actions.
Live broadcasts are primarily in demand on social networks. The audience has the effect of FOMO (loss of profit syndrome) if they understand that live broadcasts give them the opportunity to be the first to know the latest news or the video will contain information that they can’t get anywhere else.
The introduction of advanced technologies will be given attention to many companies. At the same time, we must not forget that marketing is based on human relations in society. Therefore, the attention of marketers should be redistributed towards living people, their behaviour and their reaction to marketing activities.
Now is the time to start implementing your marketing strategies for the current year. Align your promotion goals with a clear action plan.
Obviously, digital marketing will dominate this year too. To succeed, you need to have quality content for all marketing channels of communication with consumers. Check that your content plan takes into account the impact of emerging new trends.