The digital marketing landscape is changing at an astounding rate. While some of these changes catch us unawares, some of them are easily predicted or even scheduled. So, to stay competitive, digital marketers need to constantly track the marketing industry fluctuations and predict major shifts in trends on time.
Let’s see some of the major changes that may affect your digital marketing campaign in 2018.
The Rise of Augmented Reality
Even though augmented reality has been around for a while, it got a massive boost from social networks over the past few years. For example, ever since their launch in 2016, Snapchat’s augmented reality selfie filters have become so popular that they inspired other social networks (read Instagram) implement similar solutions.
So, what’s so special about AR?
It is exciting, highly engaging and, as such, it inspires people to share content and complete purchases. Most importantly, it gives the businesses the opportunity to personify their brand, make their products more approachable to users, and build stronger relationships with them.
Now, given the importance of this trend, it’s not surprising at all that the number of companies jumping on the AR bandwagon is on a steady rise. One such example is Facebook that is has made 'camera the first augmented reality platform.' Namely, they’ve already added some awesome AR features to their new Camera Effects platform, taking users’ communications to the whole new level.
Huge Changes in the World of SEO
SEO is one of the fastest-growing industries and, to harness all its power, you need to keep pace with its changes. 2018 will definitely be the year of some radical innovations that will change the face of the SEO practices we know. Here are some of them:
Google’s Mobile-First Index
Statista predicts that the number of global smartphone users will reach 9,038 million by 2020. When it comes to boosting these users’ experience, the upcoming year will bring us some significant changes. Namely, Google has announced the launch of a new mobile-first index update. In other words, they will start to calculate search listing based on the mobile version of the content, even for the searches done via desktop computers.
Voice Search can’t be Ignored Anymore
With over a half of Google searches coming from mobile devices, the use of voice search has gained momentum. Namely, in 2014, Google reported that 55% of teens and 40% of adults used this feature on a daily basis, and these numbers have been constantly rising ever since then.
Client Reporting Gets Smarter
Studies show that 72% of organizations boost customer experience by leveraging reporting and analytics. From the strict SEO viewpoint, implementing smarter client reporting means intuitive digital marketing dashboard templates, smarter widget customization, fewer security concerns, and a higher level of report personalization.
More Intuitive Use of Social Networks
With the ever-rising number of brands trying to market to their target audience via social networks, the innovations and trends are constantly emerging. And, to stay competitive, you need to keep up with them. Here are several amazing trends that will dominate social media in 2018 and ahead.
The trend that will get the most traction on social networks in 2018 is short-spanned content. With its Stories, Snapchat has made this type of content popular, followed by Facebook and Instagram. Namely, with over 10 billion daily video views on Snapchat, you cannot ignore the importance of ephemeral stories.
So, why is this content so popular?
It’s more authentic than sponsored ads, it raises people’s excitement, it is easily accessible via QR codes, and it represents an amazing way to introduce new products and upcoming projects. Most importantly, as it is short-lived, it strikes the FOMO (fear of mission out) effect, motivating users to make their decisions faster.
Leveraging Chatbots for Better Customer Service
Statistics predicted that roughly 30% of our conversation will be assisted by machines by 2018. One such example is chatbots, software apps, developed to stimulate human-like conversations. They boost customer services, by being available to their questions and problems 24/7. Initiating real-time communication and answering all questions in a timely manner, they will certainly win the hearts of your social media followers in the years to come.
Apple Blocks Cookies
Apple has introduced yet another immense change to the world of digital marketing. Namely, they added an 'Intelligent Tracking Prevention' feature to their Safari 11 web browser, which is supposed to detect tools that are tracking users, such as cookies. With this feature, third-party companies are allowed to track users only for 24 hours after their last interaction with a site, while first-party companies will be able to do so for up to 30 days. However, if the user doesn’t return to the site, their data will be deleted.
Even though these changes were made in the name of raising customers’ privacy, they made the majority of ad networks furious. Apart from the lack of relevant information, they are also concerned about Apple deciding what should be shared with third-parties, instead of letting the users choose.
Back to You
In today’s era of hyperconnectivity, change is inevitable. Even though you are not the one moving these invisible boundaries and deciding what the next big thing will be, you need to keep an eye out for these trends and use them to your advantage. Any way you slice it, this is the only way to survive in this overcrowded digital marketing ecosystem.