Marketing continues to play a pivotal role in running a successful modern business. If you are in charge of your own business or in a senior managerial position at someone else’s, then marketing is something you have to take seriously. After all, you could have the best product or service in the world, but if no one knows about it, then you are in trouble.
When it comes to modern business, digital marketing is a very important niche within marketing as a whole. More and more business takes place online now, and this makes digital marketing an essential part of your whole marketing plan.
Just what does it involve?
Digital marketing – the basics
In simple terms, digital marketing covers any marketing efforts or campaigns that your business conducts online. It differs from traditional forms of marketing such as print advertising as that happens offline. It should be noted that most successful businesses combine digital and traditional marketing for the best effect.
Popular forms of digital marketing are social media marketing, SEO, content marketing, podcasts, company blogs, PPC advertising and mobile site optimization. To give some context of how key digital marketing is, more people search by mobile in some countries than a desktop computer. When you factor in the many millions who regularly use social media and the changing way that consumers like to interact with organizations, then it is clear why you need to think about digital marketing.
What are the top trends for 2018?
Digital marketing is a fast-changing sector. There are always new trends to keep on top of, and experts within the industry think the below are most important:
- Video marketing – Stan Gershengoren is a well-respected figure in marketing and backs video content in 2018. To give an idea of how popular video content is with consumers now, it is thought that 1 billion videos are watched on YouTube each day! This shows why it is key to make video content a prime concern when posting on social media or updating your company website. Marketing experts such as Stan Gershengoren know that people respond much better to see what your message or product is and are then more likely to buy. Just remember to make ads that are suitable for mobile devices as this is where 60% of those YouTube views come from!
- Organic influencer relationships – a popular digital marketing tactic of recent years has been to partner with influential figures on various social media channels to increase your brand image. In 2018, this is still a sensible move, but it must be done in a more organic way. Consumers have begun to spot false collaborations that are not authentic, and this can actually have the opposite effect. Take the time to find an influencer on social media who really loves your brand, and this will shine through to the public.
- More considered data collection – we are now in the post-GDPR world where the updated laws are in full effect. This means that you need to be very careful about collecting any kind of data on customers from your website that you will then use for digital marketing. As long as you get explicit consent to collect and use data on individuals, it is fine. Just don’t run the risk of getting hit with a big fine for not complying!
- Chatbots – another big digital marketing trend that we are seeing in 2018 is the increased use of chatbots. These have actually been around for a while, but massive improvements in AI have made them more useful than ever now. This is great news for your digital marketing efforts as they can be used to answer the most basic customer service inquiries and leave you with more time to focus on more important things.
- Relevant content that tells a story – when it comes to SEO and content marketing, this is a key point. All the major search engines now look at how relevant the content you post is and how well-written it is for humans to actually read. Consumers now also respond far better to content that tells a story and reflects the key messages of your brand.
Digital marketing vital for all businesses
The role of digital marketing within the business will only continue to grow as technology becomes more integral to how we operate. Social media use shows no signs of slowing down and this, along with other types of digital marketing, will allow you to connect with customers in ever more engaging ways. By keeping up to date with all the latest trends, you will always be one step ahead of your competitors.