Co-founder and Director of SRV Media and EaseBuzz
From print to digital, marketing has changed at faster clip in the last five years than during the previous 50. This rapid evolution doesn’t show signs of slowing down. Marketers generally rely on SEO, social media, content marketing, paid advertising or email marketing to gain leads. However, over the last year, the digital marketing arena has witnessed some dramatic changes. Here are the seven new developments regarding digital marketing that every marketer must know.
Artificial intelligence (AI) holds exceptional future opportunities in digital marketing. Many organizations are already depending on the cutting edge features of AI, and many more are slowly starting to implement AI for their digital marketing efforts. For example, companies such as Uber, Microsoft, Pizza Hut, and others are already using AI to automate various activities.
According to a Gartner analysis, AI technologies will be pervasive in almost every new software company by 2020. AI is one of the most significant commercial opportunities for companies and will increase global GDP by 14% by 2030. In other words, companies that do not adapt to artificial intelligence fast will be at a severe disadvantage within the next few years.
In the realm of digital marketing, AI can examine consumer behavior, search patterns, and utilize data from social media and blogging platforms to assist businesses better understand how consumers discover their products and services.
Chatbots are a perfect example of AI in practice. These virtual assistants use instant messaging to chat in real-time with customers. Moreover, they also offer benefits such as outstanding service, meeting customer expectations, automating repetitive tasks and respond 24/7.
Mastercard recently created a Facebook Messenger bot that, with the help of natural language processing software, deciphers what a customer wants and responds accordingly. In fact, various reports state that chatbots will be an essential part of digital marketing. Innovation Enterprise state that 85% of customer service will be powered via chatbots by 2020. According to IBM, businesses can save over $8 billion per annum with the help of chatbots by 2022.
Programmatic Buying and Advertising
Programmatic advertising means using AI to purchase or sell advertising space. This process automates the buying, placement and optimization of media inventory. Using AI to automate advertisement buying eliminates the need to request for proposals (RFPs), human negotiations and manual insertion orders.
Programmatic advertising leads to higher conversions and lower acquisition costs because it’s faster and more efficient. Programmatic advertising allows the brand to tailor their message and creative to the right audience at the right time with the help of audience insights. This method delivers more precision and personalization for a more efficient marketing campaign. One well-known model of programmatic advertisement buying is real-time bidding.
Around 86% of digital display advertisements will be programmatic by 2020, according to eMarketer. In other words, programmatic advertising is changing the face of digital advertising very fast.
Voice Search and Smart Speakers
Search Engine Land states that an estimated one billion voice searches per month were carried out till January 2018. As per ComScore, 50% of all searches will be done by voice by 2020, and voice shopping is presumed to surge from $2 billion to $40 billion by 2022 as per OC&C Strategy Consultants. It’s no surprise that organizations are rethinking their digital marketing strategies due to this increasing use of voice search.
Today, AI is smarter than it was and has led to a decrease in errors made by popular voice assistants such as Alexa, Siri and Google. According to the Digital Marketing Institute, adopting a voice search strategy isn’t only about staying relevant. It’s also about designing a unique and optimized consumer experience that will nurture relationships and strengthen brand loyalty.
Video marketing is one of the most essential marketing trends today. According to WYZOWL, 83% of marketers say video gives them a good return on investment. And 52% of consumers say watching product videos are the reason they have made online purchases according to The E-Tailing Group’s whitepaper.
Today, video marketing has moved beyond YouTube. Marketers are also leveraging Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn for video marketing. Furthermore, with the increasing use of mobile devices, consumers are more comfortable with videos since it can provide the same information in a format that works regardless of the platform.
Content Marketing Continues to Dominate
Google’s March 2019 algorithm still favors regularly updated and complete content. According to Point Visible, 88% of B2B marketers agree that content helps audiences see their brand as a credible and trusted resource.
Therefore, marketers will need to continue investing in content due to the value Google places on well-researched and regularly updated articles. In other words, content marketing will continue to play a massive role in attracting new customers to your website and building relationships with them in a real and quantifiable manner.
Omnichannel marketing is the method of employing varied platforms to give your audience a multichannel experience. However, it’s also essential that brands present a seamless, consistent message across all mediums, online or offline. For best results, all marketing channels must be linked to one all-encompassing strategy.
An omnichannel approach leads to 18.95% engagement rate, a 250% higher purchase frequency and a 90% higher customer retention rate, according to ClickZ. This is yet another area where artificial intelligence plays a role in helping brands understand consumer behavior to create a more personalized advertising campaign.
Technology is changing the way brands communicate with consumers, who are getting savvier and expect a more personalized experience. To stay ahead of the curve, you might need to invest in some futuristic tech in the near future.