The Top 6 Marketing Trend Predictions For 2018

The Top 6 Marketing Trend Predictions For 2018

I read an interesting article recently by Forbes on the 6 Marketing trends for 2018 written by John Hall.

 

His top six were:

  1. Content marketing distribution
  2. Public relations and content marketing alignment
  3. Rising demand for authenticity
  4. Chatbots
  5. Voice search
  6. Video content

 

Content marketing is something that we bang on constantly to our clients about. We are great believers in automation of processes – both internally with our own production systems, and externally, with automation of social media channels, website content, and email campaigns.

The key for content marketing production is to always remember to differentiate your product or service. And then it’s all about where you target that content. I’m a great believer in paying for some social media advertising to create immediate returns. All social media channels offer relatively low-cost advertising rates, where you can drill down and ensure your posts are hitting the right people.

I agree with John that PR and content marketing should be thought of at the same time to realise the overall marketing objectives. For too long PR is seen as a separate function that operates in a different way. I have always told clients it’s a different bag, as it has historically been down to press relationships. However, the line is getting blurred as newspapers lay off journalists and publications are looking for finished copy and images to drop in to fill the space. By aligning your PR and marketing content there’s no doubt you’ll get more bang for your buck.

John states that marketers should enhance their personalisation in order to create more authenticity. The move to face to face interactions can create a real personality for your brand. Just look at how well Josh Littlejohn sells himself as part of this Social Bite brand. It really does help if you have a great front person for your company or brand. Especially in you do align your PR and marketing content.

Chatbots are appearing more and more on social media. They are computer programs that mimic conversation with using artificial intelligence, and they will become huge in 2018. H&M, and the Weather Channel use them, and recently Facebook launched their own bot store for Facebook Messenger. But will they recognise the Scottish accent?

Most people will know or will have used Siri at some time, and a growing number are using the Amazon Echo and Google Home products. John states that ‘some analysts estimating that as much as 50 percent of all searches will be conducted through voice by 2020. You can’t then ignore the change in thought and analysis you are going to have to do with potentially longer keywords. Things move so quickly in this area so marketers will have to keep up to date with the newest technologies to ensure their SEO remains intact.

I personally put John’s last trend at the top of my list – Video content is here to stay. He states that ‘55% of people consume video content thoroughly, and by 2020, online videos will account for more than 80 percent of all consumer internet traffic.

 

We have recently launched a national campaign on the back of video content. Having our own videographer is as important as having our own graphic designers and online content producers. The statistics for views on the video element of this campaign against normal posts and blogs is massive, in favour of video.

In essence, I agree with John’s take on next years’ marketing trends. But if I was to add a few in myself I would add automation of all content channels, and a change in how we view SEO and website design.

 

Automation frees up internal staff’s time to concentrate on the business more, whilst I believe that SEO and all the smoke and mirrors that some consultants employ to create ongoing ‘work’ will be stripped away, and optimisation and analytics will be something that any client can eventually perform themselves.

With website development (arguably) more accessible due to the invent of services such as Wix, Squarespace and their ilk, the focus for small businesses has now become in the creation and maintenance of a pipeline of quality content to create engagement with a customer base and drive sales.

Would you like to add anything to the list?

Alan Cunningham – CEO Totalize Media