In the fast-moving digital world, new trends and strategies emerge at a lightening pace. If you wish to make the most of these trends, it’s critical to be ahead of the curve and stay on top of the current best practices — because what worked for you last year may not work this year. As we move closer to a brand new year, let’s give you a sneak peek into the top digital marketing trends to watch out for in 2019.
1. Mobile First Websites and Landing pages
Mobile internet usage has surpassed other devices worldwide, and mobile users are more distracted than ever. Being mobile first and having mobile landing pages optimised for the best user experience can multiply chances of conversion.
Some tips for designing a mobile first website:
- Highlight your CTA (call to action). Make it large and easily clickable. You need to be concise and direct in your mobile landing page strategy, as there is lesser room for content here.
- Use responsive design, as it allows for the best user experience. Use these responsive landing pages design templates while building your first landing pages.
- Use a readable font size and bullet points to bring your point across.
The best mobile landing pages of 2019 by a long shot are Drift, Hulu and PayPal. Visit them you will see how brevity is key to maximum conversions. And if you use WordPress, use this free plugin to create a WordPress mobile landing page.
2. Chatbots and AI
AI is changing the chatbot landscape today. 72% of business leaders opine that AI will be a long step in improving business growth, with artificial chatbots as the future of AI.
People often confuse chatbots and AI bots, but the former are automated and not artificial. This means that while they do interact with customers, they don’t learn from those interactions and depend on programmers. AI, on the other hand, uses deep learning to receive and interpret data, not relying on programmers to determine these interpretations.
If you are looking to make an AI chatbot, check out this beginners guide on how to develop an AI chatbot from scratch. There are also many platforms such as Aivo and Botsify that help you create online chatbots to provide better customer satisfaction and improve business growth.
3. Social Media Automation
Another growing trend for digital marketing is social media messenger automation. There are over 300,000 Facebook messenger bots that are programmed to respond to general customer inquiries.
With chatbots you can schedule posts, track deliveries, make reservations or pay bills, communicate with brands without any human operator needed. You can also automate collection of email addresses for messenger chatbot marketing.
Automation in social media marketing means you no longer have to spend the time and effort engaging your audience, just train your bot to do it for you! But do make sure you do have a human at hand to respond to more complex problems.
4. Email Marketing Automation
Email is one of the best leads generation strategy there is, and the future of email marketing is automation. For those entrepreneurs who have been around a while, automated email marketing was a huge relief. But the biggest email marketing trend of 2019 is email marketing automation.
Difference between email marketing and marketing automation
(Automated) Email marketing is just a blast of emails to a client list, while email marketing automation can personalise these emails, have data and analytics at your fingertips, capture and score leads, and track your landing page as well. So a generic email reminding all your customers about you is email marketing, while an email that tracks and follows up with customers who abandoned a card is an email marketing automation strategy.
How to automate email marketing?
There are many automation and email marketing tools available for online businesses, such as SendLoop, MailerLite or BombBomb where you can create specific automated email marketing campaigns and track them.
5. Nurturing Content Over Promotional Content
Lead nurturing, in simple terms, means paying attention to your customer. Instead of just a CTA prompt, lead nurturing is a content marketing strategy that implies answering queries in every stage of the conversion funnel – not just customers who are potential buyers at this stage, but also customers who are doing research and inquiring into your product or service.
The goal here is to engage rather than convert, although conversion follows. Lead nurturing campaigns known to increase business sales are blog posts, coupons, newsletters, free trials or demos to attract clientele. 71% of marketers already use lead nurturing content, and these content strategies are proven to be much more effective ways to nurture audience.
6. Personalisation at Scale
In 2019, the need to appeal to your potential customer is higher than ever. With deep market research and data from existing customers a fictional customer, with likes and dislikes, habits and inclinations is constructed.
On the basis of this, existing customers are fit into ‘personas’ and targeted with unique content tailored to their lifestyles. This buyer persona or customer avatar is often a generalized representation of your ideal customers and this is what personalisation at scale — the buzzword in the industry — is all about.
Steps to build buyer personas for successful marketing:
- Survey your customers. Ask the right questions that can give you informative answers.
- Segment your audience. Divide your audience into segments – on the basis of age, gender, buying history, interests, income ranges etc
- Create multiple buyer personas. Many personas fit into different kinds of customers and give you a better chance for conversion.
You can also use plugins and templates available online as a good introduction to building buyer personas.
7. Video Marketing
81% of companies now realise the importance of video marketing for sales. Customers are also more likely to purchase a product after watching a video about it.
Some video marketing strategies that are guaranteed to generate leads are:
Live streaming. Streaming real time gathers a unique audience in your video marketing campaign
Square shaped videos. This format occupies 78% more space in Facebook feeds, is more mobile friendly and has higher levels of engagement.
360 degree videos. These can be used for specific businesses like design firms, or even to showcase products, destinations and even experiences in a more exciting way.
So while videos need not explicitly sell your product or service, you can successfully engage your audience and generate leads through video marketing.
8. Data Analytics for Decision Making
Data analytics is proven to help in decision making for businesses. With enormous amounts of data being generated through all the devices (and humans) connected to the internet, technology plays a role in simplifying and analysing the data.
Courses like these are basic step for learning data analytics decision making. With some homework, you can gain the analytical and technical skills required to be competent in the field of big data. You can also start with Big Data analytics tutorials, or data science courses.
With these skills, extraction of trends, patterns and useful information from large chunk of data sets becomes simpler, helping you make the right decisions and generating more revenue for your business.
9. Growth Hacking to Scale rapidly
Growth hacking cannot be mentioned without giving due credit to Sean Ellis, who coined the term in 2010. He figured out what start-ups needed more than anything: Growth. And he found the way to hack it. Prime examples of businesses that successfully hacked growth are Uber, Dropbox, AirBnB and even (offline) McDonalds.
Here are some Growth Hacking techniques:
- Referrals: Giving your customer something in return for referring your product to a friend
- Trust and Kindness: Focus on delivering a great product and the rest will follow
- Reward Loyalty: Start a product that rewards customers who stay loyal to your brand
- Reward social shares: When your post is shared on social media, dispatch discount coupons to your client
- Use Urgency and FOMO: Try countdowns for products to establish a sense of urgency. Or release limited editions and versions to capture the FOMO market
10. Influencer Marketing
Social media influencers are people with a lot of followers on the internet, and their word sells. The key to social media influencer marketing is targeting the right individuals.
Influencer marketing engage an influencer (in the same industry as you) to use a product for you and then review it. When they endorse a product, their entire fan-base will be exposed to your brand, which is more than reason to prioritize influencer marketing. This method is a better way of garnering a target audience that is interested in your product.
As a beginners guide to influencer targeting, we suggest these influencer marketing tools: BuzzSumo, which allows you to search for popular content being shared and then identify the influencer who shared it and TweetReach, a resource to find individuals who tweet and have expertise on a particular topic.
Being able to keep up with these trends can offer huge opportunities in the coming year and help you stay in tune with the evolving digital marketing landscape. Connect with us and subscribe to our blog to learn practical tips and strategies to leverage these trends for your business.