A Glimpse Into the Future of Diversified Marketing
One of the biggest technological wake-up calls that businesses received in 2016 was the explosion of social media. Social media itself has been a very dominant force all over the world with millions of active users online every day, posting billions of Tweets on a regular basis and generating an incredible amount of internet traffic.
One of the most shocking revelations in 2016 in regards to digital marketing is the fact that mobile web usage overtook desktop computers, and this is in major part due to the explosion of social media. While many experts predicted that social media would become a huge platform to drive sales and promote their brands, very few managed to capitalise on these changes and are now playing catchup. If you want to have a serious advantage in the coming year and beyond, then here are a couple of considerations and predictions for the future of diversified marketing.
Go beyond on-demand
With the release of voice-activated home assistants such as Siri and Alexa, almost everything from ordering food to calling for an Uber can be instantly done with simple commands. This has been a trend for a very long time and most companies are already capitalising on this. The faster you can deliver a service or product to the consumer, the more likely they will use your company instead of a competitor. This is why Amazon is focusing a lot on drone deliveries, their Prime Now service and even their new grocery store. However, if you want to beat these companies at their own game, you need to think a step ahead. Instead of simply delivering content on-demand to your customers, you need to be able to predict what they want based on their habits, market trends and other sources of data that you collect. In the future, delivering something on-demand might not be enough, and how companies chose to use the data they collect will be imperative to their success.
The power of influence
Thanks to services such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, there is an increasingly popular trend that companies are starting to capitalise on: influencers. These aren’t just influential people like celebrities or politicians either, but micro-influencers, people with a strong positive influence on a small group of people. By using the power of micro-influencers, you can effectively target a niche and build up a strong relationship with a small group of customers. Loyal customers that are part of a niche are more likely to recommend your services and products to a friend, making it a worthy investment to think about if your product is primarily aimed at a small audience.
The emergence of video content
In the past, we primarily used text to convey a message. The shorter the message, the snappier it was. When you look at Twitter’s character limit, it’s no wonder that people started to use photos to accompany their short messages. Then came short video messages. Small few-second clips that were recorded on mobile phones, crudely edited and then shared on social media. Despite the low production value, the snappy, quick and funny videos spread like wildfire. In the future, what we might see is short, high production value clips recorded by hiring a crew instead of using a low-quality smartphone camera. These short advertisement messages are more likely to attract attention, they’re easy to spread and share around, and if a picture can tell a thousand words, a short video could probably tell a million. If you want to get the upper hand in the upcoming social media presence war, then you’d be wise to invest in a video production team.
The rise of instant messaging
If you look back at the gradual transition from traditional to digital mediums, you’ll see that the way we receive advertisements and information has sped up. First, it was snail mail, then we got the telephone, then we upgraded to email, and now it’s instant messaging with programs such as WhatsApp. In the past, these services weren’t used very often as a platform for marketing aside from a couple of advertisements here and there on the apps, but since instant messaging is used by billions of people around the world in almost every country, it’s going to be a massive platform with a lot of opportunities akin to Twitter or Facebook. While it’s not quite social media, there’s no doubt that more and more companies will find a way to use instant messaging apps in their promotional campaigns.
The way advertising is currently headed is that more and more marketing tools are giving companies the power to analyse large sets of data. This data not only helps to improve advertising and promotional campaigns, but it turns marketing into a science based on proven statistics and numbers instead of luck or capitalising on growing trends. This information overload eventually leads to personalised content, where internet users will receive customised advertisements based on their browsing history, likes and dislikes, interests and other factors that are collected as information. While personalised content is already a very large factor in marketing today, it will become even more personalised and advertisers will be able to target their campaigns with pinpoint accuracy. With these large sets of data comes a lot of analytical research, meaning that more job openings will be available to people who specialise in researching data, looking up patterns and generally analysing statistics in order to create diverse marketing strategies. If you don’t already have an expert analyst to look at market data, then it would be wise to hire one before they are all snatched up by competitors.
To conclude, marketing in the future won’t be all too different, but there will be a heavy emphasis on providing customers with services and products that they don’t know they need. Instead of simply targeting an interest of the customer, companies will start to suggest ideas to them and do it in ways that previously weren’t possible. Short-form video content, instant messaging and highly-specific personalised content will be the pillars of a great marketing campaign in the near future.