This month, the buzz in online marketing and social media blogs is all about what trends we can expect to see gain momentum in 2013. Here’s a roundup of the top trends.
1. Multi-Screen Functionality
Customers are no longer interested in only accessing their goods and services in only one channel, and marketers should adjust their strategy to reflect that. BusinessWeek’s Startup Nation suggests that you need to ensure that your websites, emails, and other marketings are easily accessible, user-friendly, and visually pleasing across all channels. This includes different operating systems, every available Internet browser, and on all screens across desktops, tablets, smartphones, and smart TVs.
2. Companywide Social Media Usage
Gone are the days of social media being confined to the marketing department. Examples from Fast Company include HR departments posting jobs and searching for new hires, the sales team connecting with and tracking leads, and even the C suite engaging with customers to enhance their connection with a brand.
3. Big Focus On Big Data
Along with online marketing through a variety of channels comes a substantial amount of data about who is responsive to your marketing efforts. New tools and tracking systems have made it much easier to leverage this data and using it to shape your marketing campaigns in 2013 will be critical. A survey by Oracle found that “93% of executive respondents believe that their organization is losing revenue… as a result of not being able to fully leverage the information they collect.”
4. Content Marketing
Over the past few years, the standard for interaction with customers has become a two-way conversation. Customers today expect a higher level of engagement with the companies that are trying to market to them. As a result, display advertisements are losing their effectiveness and content marketing is becoming more valuable. And according to Media Bistro, media spend in 2013 will shift to reflect this change.
Have you ever noticed that you’ll see more ads for a specific product after viewing it online? No, this is not the result of extremely psychic online advertisers. You have been successfully retargeted. New technology provided by third party providers allows ads to literally “follow” you wherever you go online. As you consider your digital advertising plan in 2013, be aware that this “extra step” could make the difference between signing a new member and losing them to someone else. Several companies offer this service including, AdRoll and MediaForge.
6. Mobile Advertising
According to NetMarketshare an estimated 10% of global internet will take place on smart phones and tablets in 2013. As usual, the enterprising folks in the advertising industry have developed entirely new technology geared towards “the 10%.” In addition to text ads, it is now possible to sponsor pop-ups on any mobile site who installs the proper technology. Since this is a relatively new market with an “under- analyzed” user population, these plans are more affordable. Start here
7. Video Video Video
When Google purchased Youtube in 2006, the online marketers who hadn’t already started using video as another mode of online marketing began creating new content. Now, almost 7 years later, mobile devices with, at times, better playback quality than a laptop are gaining in popularity. If you haven’t already made video a part of your online marketing strategy, 2013 is the time to do so.
8. Social Search
Social media is a great branding tool, and every year it picks up more relevance in search engine rankings. With the launch of Google Plus Your World in early 2012, Google made it clear that the future of search would include results from your social network as well as the overall online community. What does this mean for you? It’s very much worth it to reach out to your members via social media. Friend them on Google+, Facebook and Twitter. As social search rolls out, your corporate account results will show up where your competitors’ websites used to be.
As you put the finishing touches on your 2013 Online Marketing Strategy, take a moment to consider all your options. Use these trends to reach out to members in novel ways that will impress them and secure their loyalty in 2013.