As 2016 gets into full swing, you might be wondering where to focus your marketing efforts this year. What’s new? What are customers expecting? How can you stay ahead of the competition?
Below, we have compiled the top 6 marketing trends of 2016. You’re going to have be creative, analytical, and willing try new things in order to connect with your customers on a deeper level.
Get ready for…
#1. Interactive Content
While infographics, blog posts, eBooks and reports can be great content for people and search engines, things are going to be a little more interactive in 2016. Think about including calculators related to the service or product you offer, interactive training platforms, or assessments that visitors can fill out and view their results immediately. Interactive content will keep your visitors more engaged and willing to stay on your website for longer.
#2. Marketing Automation
Marketing automation will be a huge time saver in 2016, and can increase productivity within your company exponentially. As 70% of marketers are creating more content than they did one year ago, there is a lot less time to complete the usual day-to-day tasks.
To keep up with the pace, businesses are now choosing CRM platforms that include marketing automation. These online platforms make it easier to:
- Capture new leads and send automated follow-ups
- Segment contacts to send personalized newsletters and updates
- Quickly identify top lead sources and track the lifecycle of your customers with automatically generated charts
Marketing automation ultimately allows you to create stronger relationships with your customers, while spending less time and money. Request a free guided tour today, and we’ll show you the ropes when it comes to Marketing Automation.
#3. Advocate Marketing
The goal of advocate marketing is to provide your customers such an exceptional customer experience that they refer you to others and write rave reviews about your business online. This benefits your business in two ways:
- By providing an amazing experience to your customers, you increase brand loyalty, customer engagement, and word-of-mouth referrals.
- Highlighting their rave reviews on your website and social media as you would a celebrity endorsement can create a greater sense of trust and credibility.
When it comes to buying something new, people can be very wary and look to others for guidance. Providing an image and story of a real client that is very happy with your product or service can provide the assurance new clients need to come aboard.
Need help increasing the strength of your customer relationships? Try 1CRM – a leading Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform.
#4. Snapchat: Advertisements with an Expiration Date
Snapchat is a force that just cannot be ignored in 2016. Currently generating 6 billion video views every day, it is becoming much more than an app teenagers use to send selfies to each other.
The basic premise of Snapchat is that users can take pictures or record videos, and then send them to any of their contacts. The catch is, the picture or video expires within a maximum of 10 seconds.
Companies can integrate Snapchat into their marketing calendar by releasing teasers for upcoming products/services that only last for a few seconds. It creates a sense of urgency when the content is only available for a very limited amount of time.
Wish you could have more than 10 seconds? Look into Snapchat Stories. Instead of sending a single video or image, Stories include multiple snaps that can last up to 24 hours. This is an ideal way for businesses to send their customers coupons or exclusive video content that only lasts for 24 hours.
Want to see a great example of a company utilizing Snapchat? Have a look at the World Wildlife Fund’s #Lastselfie Snapchat Campaign which raised awareness about endangered species.
#5. Mobile is Essential
If your website still only really works on desktop, and is not mobile-optimized or responsive, then that should be at the top of your list for 2016. You may also want to explore creating an app for your business and mobile-targeted campaigns.
While your website may look amazing on a desktop, if it doesn’t translate to mobile, you have failed in the eyes of your customers and Google. In 2015, Google announced that mobile traffic officially overtook desktop traffic in 10 different countries, and proceeded to release an algorithm update which penalizes websites that are not optimized for mobile.
In fact, Google has gone as far as to say you only need a mobile site. This doesn’t mean that you should actually only have a mobile site, but it’s clear that Google is banking on desktop traffic fading away, and that mobile is the way of the future.
#6. Video Endures and Live Streaming Evolves
In recent years, online video content has exploded with Snapchat, YouTube, GIFs and Vine. Statistically, viewers find videos way more captivating than images or words, and they remember them better too. In 2007, Online Publishers Association observed that 80% of viewers could recall a video ad they’d seen in the past 30 days.
In 2016, marketers are stepping up their game by engaging in Live Streaming. Taking customer engagement to the next level, they are using apps like Meerkat and Periscope to live stream videos from a mobile device, and connect with customers on social media. Easy to setup, all you have to do is press ‘stream’ and you will instantly be sharing an experience with your target audience. Users can also comment on your videos, and interact with it.
You can live stream new product releases, Q & A, promote company culture, or provide a peek into what goes on behind the scenes. Get creative with this fun new tool, but also remember it is Live and proceed with caution.
Have you explored one of these trends already? Share your creative ideas below!