The only eternal truth about digital marketing is that there is nothing eternal in it. The very moment when we think we understand where it’s headed is also the moment we realize that we are late to the party. The full range of media content competes for 8 seconds of a customer’s attention. And to win this battle we must be ready to change our strategy and to get rid of our favorite tools. How do we know which trends to adapt and integrate into our marketing strategies?
To make an impact in 2020 it's important to have an analytics-backed digital marketing plan. It's tempting to look around and see what makes your competitors grab attention, but for consistent long-term growth you shouldn't follow every trend.
Let's start with the obvious one. Fake likes, shares, and followers won't work for you anymore. Most customers can tell the difference between pages with fraud clicks and the pages with strong content. Besides, social media platforms often ban suspicious business pages with a number of fake subscribers.
Faking the comments and reviews on your product is also a weak move since experienced users can easily indicate the fraud. And we are talking here about the generation of customers who have grown up with a Smartphone instead of a rattle in their hands. So the matter is not even that it is a cheap trick, but that it is useless.
The more is not the merrier anymore. Each social media channel has a different optimal frequency, and the studies continue to reveal that ultimately, you need to track your channel analytics to understand your audience's preferences. However, we can give you some best practices.
HubSpot reveals Facebook pages with less than 10,000 fans experience a 50% drop in engagement per post if there is more than one post per day. At minimum you'll want to post 3 times a week.
On Twitter Louise Myers suggests "3 to 30 times a day is best. Tweets do have an incredibly short shelf life, so it’s important to spread your tweets through the day."
An even trickier problem is the quality of your content. Marketing success is based not only on the ability to attract customers but on the ability to make them return; in other words, on customer retention. To maintain customer retention, we need to reconsider our SEO policy.
When our SEO focus solely on keywords, we neglect our contents’ quality for the sake of click rate. The task here is not to please the search engines, but to create good content that will bring back your customers. The priorities for up-to-date SEO strategies are usefulness and meeting the customers’ needs. On the one hand, it helps to earn your customer’s loyalty. And on the other, it makes the user eager to share this content. Most customers make their offline purchases based on recommendations. The same rule works online – shares are the most valuable indicator of the validity of your content strategy.
The algorithm of search engines has gotten smarter. Now to get to the top 10 search results you need to provide the top-quality content. Long story short, make your content worth reading.
A blog is one of the must-have elements of your marketing strategy. With blogs, you earn the loyalty of your audience and bring in leads. However, if you only stick to the conservative tools for your business, you’ll be drowned out by more progressive brands.
In 2020, 92% of marketers say that video is an important part of their marketing strategy. This is an increase from 78% in 2015. Video is incredibly versatile and can be integrated into every business in some way.
You sell maintenance equipment – make a video on how to choose proper tools and equipment and why. If you have a hair salon – shoot a video about makeup techniques and trends in hair styles and color. Want to promote any kind of service? Make a behind-the-scenes video or an interview of your happy clients. Finally, ask your customers what they what to see. Video-on-demand is one of the most engaging and effective techniques for earning audience loyalty.
However, even if you have good content, you can spoil all your efforts by aggressive advertising.
Web advertising is going through radical transformations. One of the reasons is the widespread use of AdBlock. In 2019, roughly 25.8 percent of internet users were blocking advertising on their connected devices. While impressions are becoming harder to generate, ad publishers have to look for new strategies. A good alternative is native advertising. It shows a better level of ad content acceptance and most importantly, it cannot be blocked or singled out from the other content.
Losing impressions is not the biggest problem, though. By aggressively posting ads you frighten away your audience and lose in retention.
Most customers listen to recommendations, especially when they hear them from somebody famous. A strong personal brand or celebrity who suggests your product to their followers is an influencer. Vamp recently conducted a survey of 124 marketers to find out how they're working with influencers, what they're prioritizing, and where they're seeing success. (source)
Here's a quick overview of the key findings:
To recap, 2020 should be your year to stop:
This is not a comprehensive list of ways to improve your marketing strategy. If your business is still alive in 2020 you already know that. Now is not the time for being conservative. Instead, you must be open to new strategies and evaluating your analytics along the way.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in February, 2017 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.
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