2017: A Year in Review
As 2017 draws to a close, there’s a lot to reflect on in terms of your business and its successes and challenges. Here are some marketing questions you may have been reflecting on.
- How do we leverage social media to increase sales?
- Is investing in content marketing worth it?
- Do we need to pivot to video?
Here are some trends for this year and some predictions for 2018.
Social Media: Here to Stay
You should be thinking about which social media platforms were profitable for your business and its image, and new ways to harness the power of social media.
- Although Facebook may be facing a decline, Instagram is growing quickly with 800 million monthly users. Instagram Stories have dwarfed Snapchat in popularity only after a year.
- Twitter is also struggling to grow users, but LinkedIn may make some in-roads with B2B marketing.
- Influencers in 2018 may still be useful, as most marketers have found them to be effective for marketing.
It’s a Google and Facebook (Ad) World
In 2017, Google and Facebook dominated digital ad spend at a whopping 63 percent. Brands are integrating shopping experiences through both companies through Google Shopping and Facebook’s Shop Section.
Simply put, this duopoly has become quite skilled and targeted marketing, through web searches and consumer interest, respectively.
You probably know by now that mobile devices are increasing in usage. You should make sure, at the very least, that your website is mobile friendly.
In terms of advertising, according to Magna, 55 percent of digital ads are generated through clicks and impressions on mobile devices used around the world. Even Google and Facebook’s domination in ad sales has a sizable amount coming from mobile ads.
Living in the Land of Bots
Artificial intelligence (AI) has made its presence more known in the realm marketing this year through the use of chat bots. So just because you’re not on your website 24/7, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t a helpful presence there, waiting to assist prospects and customers.
Chat bots aren’t the only way AI has been working for brands. You can see it in inbound marketing campaigns such as Streak, which help to move leads down funnels to transform into customers.
In 2018, expect to see more of the same–more brands embracing AI help and creating more personalization through algorithms based on customer behavior. This data can readily be gained from social networks, mobile app downloads, and online purchases.
Video Makes a Marketing Star
2017 saw a meteoric rise of the use of video for marketers, where a little over have reported that video content had the best ROI. You can call this “infotainment,” a blend of entertainment along with useful information.
The increased use of Instagram Stories and Facebook Live are emblematic of this pivot to video—especially live video. If you’re looking to upgrade how you give announcements or showcase special events at your company, live video can keep you ahead of the curve in 2018.
Overall, you should be focused on a customized, engaging experienced for both prospects and customers that shows your company in an authentic, reliable light. There are a plethora of tools to help you accomplish this, so you can make significant improvements in your company’s bottom line.