Every 12 months I pick out the virtual and advertising developments and traits which I trust will shape the industry and digital/advertising and marketing making plans and thinking within the 12 months ahead.
In a few preceding years new virtual marketing disciplines emerged e.G. Seek engine marketing, social media advertising, cell advertising, content advertising, influencer advertising and others. I can not see any new such disciplines performing in 2019.
No new virtual advertising disciplines
Instead 2019 will remain formed by way of broader modifications and imperatives like virtual transformation, client enjoy, records, omnichannel, personalisation, the conflict for expertise, enterprise model evolution, new approaches of working (like agile) and new approaches of organising teams and the way digital/advertising receives accomplished. None of those are new however none of them are easy or over in a yr.
From a era factor of view artificial intelligence (AI) is greater exciting for marketers than other regions of tech development like 3D printing, Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, self-riding cars or weareables. But even AI may be experienced by using most entrepreneurs in specialist, implemented, approaches that are incremental upgrades to existing equipment, information and structures rather than step modifications.
1. Digital Transformation
Digital transformation does no longer appear fast. Some organizations appear to anticipate it to appear over the course of a yr. In my enjoy, in particular for large organisations, closer to five years is greater practical. Even then, the mission is in no way over.
This Slideshare presentation I created almost four years in the past, looking at digital transformation across the enterprise vectors of method, technology, humans and process remains very a whole lot paintings in development for most enterprises.
The records underneath from a recent SmartInsights webinar confirmed that a third of corporations are making plans transformation in the next one year with a quarter already having launched into them.
Within ‘digital transformation’ I suppose particularly hot regions for 2019 will encompass:
New methods of working:
In technique e.G. Agile.
In advertising org structures e.G. See our Modern Marketing Model.
In cultural and attitudinal exchange, along with neurodiversity and virtual inclusion.
In the bodily running environment e.G. Creating agile workplaces.
In the gear and era used for collaboration and communication e.G. Tools which have interaction emotionally now not simply productively.
New abilties and capability:
I count on to look ‘increase advertising and marketing/hacking’ break out the arena of begin-usaand grow to be adopted also with the aid of larger companies.
Data and martech competencies remain scarce and at a top rate.
Product advertising and marketing/control may also become extra in ‘mainstream’ call for (see recent McKinsey article “The product management talent dilemma” for more).
Customer enjoy abilities stay notably trendy – see next phase.
2. Customer Experience
Customer experience is perhaps as much a mindset and enterprise philosophy as a discipline. But it’s miles one the factors of our Modern Marketing Model (M3) and a far larger part of what entrepreneurs spend their time focusing on.
Within customer revel in there are numerous sub-disciplines, equipment, processes and procedures: personas, client adventure mapping, digital analytics and conversion fee optimisation (CRO), the ways of measuring CX, and, of direction, the expert design and UX talents worried in crafting the excellent viable reviews throughout numerous media and touchpoints.
For 2019 the hot regions for CX can be:
Conversational user experience layout – chatbots won’t quite have lived up to the hype they’d in 2018 however there may be no denying the upward thrust in interfaces (most manifestly voice) which can be primarily based on a conversational paradigm. Some correct questioning from IBM on conversational UX layout.
Realtime stories – our expectations for immediate studies are not slowing down and there may be nonetheless so much most brands can do to improve. It became almost 3 years in the past but most of what I wrote approximately in 10 examples of realtime virtual studies we are able to assume more of nevertheless applies.
Mobile – yes, it’s miles nevertheless the 12 months of mobile. Most people may additionally have mobile-optimised our websites and emails now however there is lots nevertheless to do e.G. Round m-trade, messaging, increased cellular pages (AMPs) and mobile apps (likely along with Progressive Web Apps (PWAs)). Google popularised the idea of micro-moments throughout the consumer adventure and there may be nonetheless masses to be accomplished in using mobile to permit the ones moments of interaction together with your logo.
Personalization – once more, no longer a brand new fashion but nevertheless something maximum brands are specializing in. In precise, a way to use data to enhance the client experience. For example, US fashion store Stitch Fix has a team of over 75 records scientists running on personalizing the client experience as explained by means of CEO Katrina Lake.
Three. Search Engine Optimization (search engine optimization)
On an operational foundation Google’s launch of Google Marketing Platform, and the closer integration in their diverse advertising merchandise with their records and optimisation tools (like Google Analytics, AB Testing, Data Studio) is substantial.
On a strategic foundation, as with many different digital advertising disciplines, it’s miles folks who can use facts more efficiently who will continue to win out in search engine marketing. This means the wise use of information alerts to optimise toward dreams and improved automation to enhance productiveness. In my introduction to our Modern Marketing Model (M3) I make the point that marketers now want to market to machines the usage of facts and nowhere is this extra genuine than with search engine optimization.
Last year there has been plenty of hype around voice search. Econsultancy wrote approximately the destiny of voice search and natural language & conversational seek however, rightly, sounded warning too: Why we want to forestall repeating the “50% via 2020” voice search prediction.
One of the most charming traits to observe round voice seek is the diploma to which Google’s dominance in seek may be eroded. Most manifestly by Amazon who no longer only have Alexa however also are increasingly more the primary area customers visit behavior shopping-associated searches. Amazon’s current press launch revealed “Customers use of Alexa for buying more than tripled this 12 months as compared to closing yr.” Precedents from China (Alibaba and Tencent vs. Baidu) endorse Google must be involved.
But on a greater prosaic stage it is well worth searching at Mozcast’s SERPs capabilities analysis which tracks changes in what’s shown in search engine outcomes over the years. These are the pinnacle ten from the remaining 30 days at time of writing:
Conversational content material e.G. Questions and answers, terms human beings would say instead of key phrases they might kind in. More in “Five ways to optimise your content material for voice in 2019”.
Reviews and scores
Video and photographs
Featured snippets (which relates of path to voice and conversational content)
Two different regions I expect need to justifiably be a focal point for search engine marketing in 2019:
Visual search – read Econsultancy’s awesome “Visual Search: A Guide for Marketers” for all you want to recognize on this.
Site pace – Google introduced final 12 months that they are the use of page pace as a rating component in cell seek results. Whilst this first of all simplest affects the mobile seek ratings of the slowest websites it’s miles honestly indicative of wherein matters are going and velocity, as we have already mentioned in the Customer Experience phase, is crucial in lots of extra ways than simply mobile search engine marketing.
4. Social Media
There are masses of statistics resources (together with, for the United Kingdom, Ofcom’s extraordinary The Communications Market research) which echo converting client utilization styles across the principle social media. Facebook is static or declining however Facebook-owned Instagram and WhatsApp are growing strongly. Snapchat is developing and now not only for younger customers. And now, of direction, there is TikTok exploding onto the scene.
There are plenty of latest formats and opportunities too for us to test with in 2019 e.G.
Facebook’s “Click-to-WhatsApp ads” (ads that launch a WhatsApp chat through the Facebook News Feed) now file on traffic, conversions and post engagement objectives.
WhatsApp Business App – announced a year in the past, that is presently a unfastened-to-download Android app for small corporations letting them create commercial enterprise profiles and feature a messaging dating with clients.
Last yr it turned into also announced that WhatsApp will show commercials within the app’s repute characteristic this 12 months but there are not any precise timings but.
It’s not a brand new characteristic however Instagram’s polls in their Stories are an thrilling way for brands to get patron insight and are evolving so you can now send non-public polls throughs DMs and use Instagram analytics for in addition intelligence.
IGTV – introduced ultimate June, Instagram call this “the subsequent technology of video” and is for watching longer-form, vertical video i.E. For mobile where maximum video viewing now happens. Brands with demonstrated bills can use IGTV to create motion pictures as much as 60 mins long.
I predict the subsequent may also be full-size for social media in 2019:
We recognise how big the numbers are for using messaging apps, however this global has been ‘darkish’ to most brands and advertisers so far. 2019 will see some light in this darkness. Partly because of new advertising possibilities highlighted above however additionally as brands start to use messaging apps for consumer interactions consisting of service and sales. Apple Business Chat continues to be in beta but, along side Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp Business App, will see brands experimenting this year with a brand new medium for consumer interplay.
2019 may be the 12 months influencer advertising grows up. Econsultancy, with our sister logo Influencer Intelligence, have posted a free industry developments file ‘Influencer Marketing 2020’ which explores how the influencer marketing landscape has evolved. As the amounts of money being spent develop, media companies will want to deal with influencer advertising greater strategically and now not simply as an extension of a quick-time period, tactical PR campaign. Tiered influencer strategies can be required to deal with both attain and impact. New software will emerge to cope with ‘fake have an impact on’ problems.
B2B social media
It can be negative for LinkedIn’s stage of engagement and value within the long term, but in the quick time period there’s no signal that LinkedIn’s growth is slowing or that their advertising answers and opportunities are reducing. Twitter may additionally have had its challenges but is likewise growing. I assume both to stay vital for B2B advertising and marketing in social over 2019. Messaging additionally provides an thrilling possibility in B2B: while not busy with Econsultancy I run Guild that is to WhatsApp what LinkedIn is to Facebook.
(N.B. Econsultancy has lately posted a B2B Social Media Best Practice Guide)
5. Email & Marketing Automation
Email is the workhorse of digital advertising and marketing. Rarely the sexiest or freshest topic but nonetheless, with seek advertising, a part of the bedrock of digital marketing.
I cannot consider anything significantly new in electronic mail advertising or advertising and marketing automation that has no longer been talked about earlier than. It continues to be approximately personalization, about higher integration throughout the consumer journey, approximately cell optimisation, about responsive layout throughout devices, approximately improved triggers and sequencing. Even machine learning is not new to e mail marketing, whether used for subject line optimisation, content suggestions or optimising ship times.
But I’m certain we all recognize that whilst those aren’t new principles or technologies, most of us nonetheless aren’t executing on electronic mail nearly as well as we realize we need to be. There is lots to do over 2019 and past.
An exciting question on the subject of email and marketing automation, and which I consider will floor more regularly over 2019 as marketers struggle with “omnichannel consumer revel in optimisation”, is which machine is the ‘mind’ to your digital advertising and marketing?
The mind is the (increasingly AI-powered) decisioning engine for your digital marketing. The mind wishes statistics, supplied through various inputs from other structures, to decide and send instructions for execution. Trying to run a couple of mind straight away is complicated. So which system is your digital advertising brain? The ecommerce platform? Your CMS? An analytics engine? A ‘clever’ advertising platform? Surely the email/marketing automation platform has a declare on being your number one digital advertising brain?
2019 then is greater of the identical for e-mail. But e-mail is very a great deal on the coronary heart of a great deal bigger challenges round advertising and marketing good judgment, records orchestration and enjoy architecture.
6. Data & Analytics
The megatrend around records is going past advertising. We have been speakme about facts-driven advertising in the world of digital for a long time. But increasingly statistics needs to be the running device on your business. And, as with patron enjoy, that is as a good deal approximately method, lifestyle, expertise and system as it’s miles about era or any specific area.
Data definitely isn’t going away in 2019. Indeed, as I wrote about in “What ‘records’ capabilities does a cutting-edge advertising characteristic want?” the need for both specialist and generalist information talents and competencies is simplest going to growth, as shown in the table under, with expertise in brief supply.