It’s that time of year again, when all the children are getting excited for the big man and on their best behavior, the adults are ferociously wrapping presents and longing for their last day at work and us Marketeers are putting together some marketing predictions for the year to come. With that being said, I thought I would jump on the marketing prediction bandwagon and put my two-penneth in. Now I must say, some may happen, some may not, but these predictions are based on my marketing experience and what has happened in the marketing world in 2019.

1. Digital Ad Spend to Increase

Yup! Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but social ad spend is yet again on the rise. Following a Facebook algorithm update in May 2019, News Feed Will Highlight Worthwhile & Close Friend Content’Facebook have made it very difficult for SMEs to reach their audience organically, meaning the only option to generate real interest and conversions is through paid advertising. 

When business pages publish a post, it only reaches on average 5% of their overall following.

Facebook content is so saturated and is only going to get worse, it means what users see on their timeline is all depending on their engagement and interaction with people or businesses. Of course, Facebook have now left businesses with no other option then paid advertising, everyone is doing it! Meaning Facebook are rubbing their hands together thinking of all the extra revenue which will be generated from business advertising alone.

What can you do?

Jump in while costs are still low! Unfortunately, it is inevitable if you are considering Social Media as part of your 2020 Marketing strategy to generate ROI, you must invest in paid advertising. Paid Advertising allows you target your audience using demographics, locations, interest, job titles, social UX and much more. A little tip if you are doing your own advertising, do not boost posts. This is Facebooks way of making money from people who are inexperienced in social advertising. Instead, create targeted audiences using locations and demographics when creating a new ad.

2. Video Marketing will continue to rise

Did you know 85% of videos watching online are watching with no sound? With 81% of businesses using video as a marketing tool (Hubspot)it would be interested to know the actual % of businesses who 1. realise the mute statistic and 2. what revenue % is being generated from this form of marketing.

85% of videos watched online are watching on mute.

*source: digiday.com*

What can you do?

I am not suggesting for one minute you go back to every video your company has ever created and edit it, but I am suggesting that moving forward, any videos you create ensure you have text or subtitles on show. Test your videos on mute, does it make sense? Is it just as good as with the sound on?

3. Don’t try please the robots with your website

When I ask people what they think SEO is all about, I often here words used such as ‘robots’ ‘technical’ ‘link building’ ‘meta data’ and ‘code’ – now, whilst all these are relevant to SEO, they actually only make up a fraction of the overall ‘SEO’ strategy.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is basically a practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engines, which in more recent years is what Google and other search engines look for.

All Search Engines really want to see from your website is that it provides the end user with relevant and useful information relating to their search query.

Yes, they look for meta data in each page of your website, yes ‘google bots’ can’t recognise images therefore you have to use ALT tags on your images and yes, quality link building is a big tick– however, all Google and other Search Engines really want to see is you are providing the end user with relevant, quality information from their search term.

Top 10 things Search Engines look for in websites;

  1. A Secure and Accessible Website
  2. Page Speed (Including Mobile Page Speed)
  3. Mobile Friendliness
  4. Domain Age, URL, and Authority
  5. Optimized Content
  6. Technical SEO
  7. User Experience (RankBrain)
  8. Links
  9. Social Signals
  10. Real Business Information

What can you do?

Understanding your customers is key to a good website strategy. List your persona’s. Who are they? What are their buying habits? What are their intensions for being on your website? Once you truly understand what your customers want – you can develop your website around them. After all, their the reason you have a website in the first place, right?

4. VR (Virtual Reality)

I must admit, this time a few years ago I heard the words ‘Virtual Reality’ I pictured someone in their living room shouting at their Xbox with a VR headset on. Fast forward a few years and I actually tried one of these VR headsets out myself, I went on a rollercoaster! It was great, a huge rollercoaster with twists, turns and drops, all in my living room, cool right? Well, fast forward another year and it is most definitely more than just cool – while it is still experimental, virtual reality shows incredible promise for the future — especially for social marketing.

Facebook is currently on a billion-dollar VR spending spree! That would be nice, right? Getting ahead of the game way back in 2014, Facebook has paid $2 billion to acquire Oculus VR, the technology company behind the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset.  In September this year, Facebook announced its new VR platform, Horizon.

Facebook believe VR is the future of Facebook. With CEO, Mark Zuckerberg saying“VR is the next platform, where anyone can create and experience anything they want,” said Zuckerberg. “Pretty soon, we’re going to live in a world where everyone has the power to share and experience whole scenes as if you’re just right there in person.”

What can you do?

You don’t have to initiate VR into your 2020 Marketing strategy immediately, nor do you have to spend billions like Facebook on new VR platforms, but I would certainly recommend getting ahead of your competitors and researching VR and how it can be incorporated into your marketing strategy.

5. Influencer Marketing

Last and certainly not least, influencer marketing is already an important aspect of many 2019 Marketing strategies, but I am confident by 2021, almost every business will have this within their strategy or certainly be thinking about implementing it.

63% of millennial’s trust influencers more than brand advertising.

Social media makes it easier than ever for brands to identify influencers by observing the people and organisations their target audience is engaging with. Every company should provide valuable, useful content to its audience to gain trust and expertise, with the added topping of an influencer valuing your product or services you are more likely to increase sales.

What can you do?

Influencer marketing can be difficult to get going. It can also be costly, depending on your target audience, products/services and influencers required to make a difference to your brand. A lot of companies struggle to identify and connect with relevant influencers, to measure campaign performance, and to effectively manage the influencer relationship and content creation processes.

Exactly the same as point 3, Understand your customers is vital. Create an ideal persona and target influencers who would use your brand – offer freebies too to your influencers! Get them to love your product first, then they can shout about it to your preferred target market.

For help and guidance with your 2020 Marketing strategy, please do get in touch.