Top 10 marketing trends for 2019 that you simply can’t ignore
By Darell Khin.20 Dec 2018 .
3 min read
New digital marketing trends are emerging ever so often bringing better ways to connect with customers. With 2019 soon approaching, we can see a dramatic shift in the way customers consume products, services, and information. Companies need to constantly make changes and align themselves to suit customers’ ever-changing behavior. Let’s look at the top trends for 2019 that could help businesses evolve and implement successful marketing campaigns.
1. AI (Artificial Intelligence) – AI has been around for a while, however, in the past 2 years, it has evolved drastically and has found its way into our homes. AI in the form of Alexa, Google Home, Cortana, and Siri have changed the way we use our phones, TVs, computers, and even our alarm clocks. The internet-connected age cannot ignore how integral AI is becoming. Simple jobs are being replaced by robots, programmes, and algorithms. AI can analyze behavior patterns and trends, and provide businesses with insightful information on how customers shop, what they need, what they are looking for, and so on. AI can utilize data from social media, blogs and browser history. This can help automate much of the customer service and give customers an optimized experience. AI will greatly reduce costs and boost growth.
2. Chatbots – According to Gartner, chatbot technology will make its way into 25% of customer services by 2020. This is a drastic increase considering it was less than 2% in 2017. Chatbots are a form of AI which operate via instant messaging in real-time. Customers can contact customer service round the clock and chatbots are able to provide programmed responses that could help solve the customer’s issue. 80% of businesses are already using or plan to use chatbots by 2020. Customers also prefer chatbots because they give accurate answers, remember past issues, remember order history and have all the data ready. They also never lose patience no matter how difficult the customer may be! Currently, around 1.4 billion people interact with chatbots. It is predicted that by 2022, businesses will see savings of $8 billion per year by using chatbots.
3. Influencers – An influencer can be anyone who’s a celebrity, YouTube and Instagram stars, well-known bloggers and journalists who have a lot of people following them. Influencers have changed the way businesses market their products. Considering influencers have millions of followers, they have the scope to reach out to a large but targeted customer base. Take for example a female influencer who posts healthy recipes, exercise routines and the like, she would be suitable for health-related products and services especially ones targeted to women. Paying influencers to get the word out would result in reaching a large relevant audience.
4. Programmed advertising – This type of advertising uses AI again, and it helps in automating paid ads to reach the target group. Examples of programmatic advertising include real-time auctions or biddings. This method is cost efficient, saves time and provides results.
5. Personalization – Personalization was a thing taken for granted back in the day. As stores became bigger and bigger, and things became more automated, we lost the personal touch. But it’s making its way back into the market as customers feel the need for it. Brand loyalty increases when marketing is individualized and tailored to them. Businesses should study and analyze the behavior of customers and figure out where they should automate and where they should retain the personal touch. Many businesses, such as Amazon and Netflix, already suggest products and services based on past activity and recent search history. On the other hand, studies show that the number of customers who would prefer to talk to customer service via SMS is growing. They would much rather get things done over chat or SMS rather than go through the IVR and talk to a customer service representative. Therefore, there are some areas where automation is required and some areas which need to be personalized. The key is to find the balance between both.
6. SMS – Though SMS is an old marketing trend, it has kept its momentum going. SMS has kept its high response rates steady over the years. Text messages see an open rate of 90% and the majority of that being opened within 3 minutes of receipt. Along with that, it boasts of a 45% response rate. Since the SMS is concise and the content is relevant, customers seem to take to SMS campaigns easily. Rather than reading through excessive content and lengthy emails, the text keeps things simple and delivers the bare necessary information. Businesses need to find a reliable gateway and design a strategic campaign tailored to different categories of customers in order for the SMS to successfully deliver results.
7. Video marketing – It’s imperative to incorporate videos into the digital marketing realm and not just on YouTube. Video posts, live videos on social media, and 360 video experiences are becoming increasingly popular. 70% ‘of customers reported that they have shared a brand’s video. On the business end, 72% say videos have improved conversion rates. Videos work well for product demos, interviews, behind-the-scenes, sneak peeks and so on. As we advance, the cost of filming has rapidly decreased as smartphone cameras are enabled to take high-quality photos and videos.
8. Social media messaging – Facebook messenger alone sees 1.3 billion active monthly users. Since businesses have a strong presence on social media, it’s not surprising that Facebook sees over 2 billion messages between businesses and customers. Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, Instagram DM, and WeChat are used extensively in the business world to keep in touch with customers. It also provides an easy route for customers to contact a business.
9. Image search – This new way of searching enables users to upload images and get more specific results for their search query. Pinterest introduced Lens, a visual search tool through which users could take a photo of something they like and find out where they can purchase it online. It also gives results for related items or similar things on the Pinterest board. Google also has two such searches – Reverse image search and Google Lens. Lens can even recognize landmarks, objects, and other items. Visual searches give businesses an edge over the competition.
10. Smart devices and voice search – Smart devices allow people to conduct voice searches. It is predicted that by 2020, 50% of all searches will be activated through voice. Currently, around 20% of Google searches come through AI. Voice searches allow people to find information without having to type anything, so it becomes easy to search even while driving, working or when you’re busy with just about anything. Alexa, Siri, and Google have become smarter over the years and are able to provide users with a good experience with much less frustration than before. Dominos took to this early by allowing customers to order pizzas using Alexa.
While many new trends are emerging, one shouldn’t ignore the time-tested and dependable ones. It’s ideal to have a balance of proven methods and the latest tools that hit the market.
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