Top Ten Digital Marketing Trends You Should Be Aware of
We’ve had eCommerce and digital marketing for just under 23 years. Since then, companies have fought for the top spot in Google’s search results through the SEO process.
Before the 1990s, nobody would have even known what a search engine was, let alone understood how to “optimize” a “website.” Things have changed a lot over that short period of time and they continue to change rapidly. It’s important to stay on top of those ever-changing digital marketing trends.
We’re going to look at some of the most prominent trends in the marketing industry today, giving you some insight into what you should be focusing on. We hope the ideas below give you the inspiration to take your marketing campaigns by storm this year.
Let’s get started.
1. Google’s New “Answering System”
If you noticed a difference in Google’s response to your questions? You might see a highlighted snippet of text when you ask a question. This is Google’s new “snippet feature.”
This is a way for Google to optimize its results in a way that addresses user concerns more quickly. The user searches, the answer is highlighted, and that user can move forward without even clicking. This poses a little challenge for the digital marketers out there.
You want to rank well to get more clicks, and the snippet feature makes the click unnecessary. It’s easy to forget that Google’s alliance is to the user rather than the site owner trying to generate positive SEO karma.
Optimizing for Snippets
There’s a great way to optimize for these highlighted snippets. If your target keyword has an implied question, write that question with the keyword in an H2. Make the first sentence of the section a direct answer to the question. That way, Google’s AI pairs the question and answer more easily.
Here’s an example with the target keyword “best musician:”
Your H2 would read “who is the best musician of all time?” and your first sentence would read “This is a heavily disputed question, although Rolling Stone Magazine cites Bob Dylan as the greatest songwriter of all time.”
You can incentivize the “click” by adding a little teaser within the first or second sentence of the section. For example, you might add “We’ve got a unique take on who the best musician of all time really is.”
2. Email Might Take the Stage
The email felt like a dying marketing avenue for the longest time. In the face of privacy and personalization issues on social media, though, the email could take center stage again.
You might notice deeper engagement in email campaigns, newsletters, and more. The challenge is developing an email following in the first place. You might need to use PPC advertising to kickstart your newsletter list before it starts to make a difference in your sales.
3. Rapid PPC Developments
There’s a lot more emphasis on pay-per-click (PPC) marketing these days. Businesses and individuals are putting their dollars into paid ads more than they invest in SEO in a lot of cases.
The rapid results of paid ads are hard to compete with, especially as marketing platforms create easier interfaces, and more effective products, and generally improve the digital marketing experience. This increased interest in PPC will lead to developments in social media and search engine advertising platforms.
Further, more and more helpful tools and software will become available. Keep an eye on updates about PPC tools and other changes to PPC marketing. You can capitalize on changes when they occur.
PPC might be the most effective and affordable social media marketing option as well, so it’s wise to invest in it.
4. Variety Might Outshine Discounts
Discounts are a great way to acquire new customers, especially those that might be unfamiliar with your niche. That said, slapping a big discount on your product selection and sending out the PPC ads might not be the best way to go.
Instead, you might see a lot of companies adjusting their product selection based on the overwhelming consumer data that’s available. Products tailored to individuals are more appealing than more affordable products that aren’t as relevant.
You might not need to change your product selection as much as your marketing. Consider investing in your market research to tailor your brand toward your target customer. Rather than offering discounts to draw people, you might have more luck by curating your brand experience.
5. Data Is Vulnerable
It’s clear that people aren’t happy about data mining. As marketers, it’s helpful that companies take all of the data they can. As a user, it might feel a little invasive.
The data struggle between the population, massive social media companies, and the government makes things very fragile. On one hand, you might see greater access to data in the coming years. Companies might get the green light to harvest even more and shake it back out to advertisers and marketers.
On the other hand, restrictions could come swiftly. If that happens, effective data tools and resources you’ve come to rely on could disappear.
6. Organic SEO Remains
In the face of shifting data access and increased interest in PPC, there’s one thing you can still count on. Organic search results are the sturdy backbone of any good campaign.
If you can put time and effort into your organic SEO, you’ll have a healthy digital presence. It takes a little grit and patience to get there, but they stay strong once you’ve achieved them. Even if laws, preferences, and user interests change, healthy organic SEO shows up in Google searches.
This is a reminder to factor that in. Don’t lose sight of your fundamentals as you try to accommodate this year’s changes.
7. Video Is Important
Video is far more accessible and functional than it once was. Even a few years ago, mobile videos weren’t as easy to engage with as they are now. Mobile phones and mobile plans are a lot quicker, allowing video to take center stage.
Just look at TikTok. It’s become one of the world’s largest social media platforms over the last couple of years. That’s thanks to the fact that almost everyone has a phone that quickly loads videos. Before that, Instagram shot up as mobile access became more effective.
8. Shortened Attention Spans
There’s an interesting split when it comes to the data around content. On one side, longer content seems to do better on search engine results pages. On the other side, user attention spans are shortening and people just want answers.
There’s a healthy balance that you need to strike. Get to the point right away and elaborate later. Refer back to our section about the snippet answers that Google provides.
Even if you’re not optimizing for snippets, the tactic of answering questions right as a section starts is effective here. Imply the keyword in the header, answer the question, then take a deep dive into the subject matter.
What matters most here, though, is that you’re answering the question right away for those that don’t have time to sift through a whole article.
9. Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing has been hot for a couple of years. It doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.
Working with influencers in your niche gives you the ability to express your brand in a more approachable way. The recommendation of an influencer goes a long way. The trick is finding the right influencer to work with and working together to create a campaign that drives sales.
As higher engagement with social media platforms becomes the norm, you can expect to see more and more companies working with influencers to get the word out about their brands.
10. Customer-Focused Branding
A big twist in the marketing world is the emphasis on individual journeys rather than the qualifications of a company. Advertisements of the past would lean heavily on the quality of a company, the nature of its ethos, and what it meant for someone to use its product.
Imagine an old Marlboro commercial preaching about the sturdiness and rugged nature of any man who smoked their cigarettes. This type of commercial is brand-focused. These are the commercials that most of us know, so it’s what we come up with when we’re forced to advertise for ourselves.
There’s a shift taking place, though. There’s so much variety and access to products now that people aren’t as influenced by symbolic factors as the ones in old cigarette ads.
Instead, people want to see the utility of the product in action. They want to know that the thing they’re buying will be useful in their life or fit into the context of their life well.
Customer-focused marketing is the way to express that kind of utility. A video of someone incorporating a product into their life will go farther than a PPC ad that reads “Martin Shoes – The Heartyman’s Choice.”
Want to Learn More About Digital Marketing Trends
We hope our look at digital marketing trends was useful to you. There’s a lot more to learn, and things will keep changing.
It’s important to stay updated on what’s happening now. We’re here to help. Explore our site for more ideas on digital marketing, business tips, SEO, and a whole lot more.