Marketing Trends for 2018

As a full service marketing agency, we’re always asked about marketing trends. Everyone wants to know what they should focus on over the next 12 months if they want to remain on top of their marketing program. There are many key tactics to use if you want to be effective at marketing. In this post, however, we’ll touch on five of the many trending marketing initiatives for 2018.  Marketers in businesses of all sizes and in every industry can use them. Whether you sell to consumers, other business, or have tangible products or services these five tactics, while not always new ideas, will keep you at the forefront in 2018 because they are increasing in importance of their use.

Using Videos
YouTube now surpasses Google as the largest search engine on the planet, with 2 million more unique searches than Google.  Businesses will capitalize on video usage in pre-roll YouTube ads.  They will also pay more attention to paid search and re-targeting with the use of video content. Basically what this says is that your kids’ screen habits have rubbed off on you…and your customers. Everyone is viewing online videos and spending less time at the traditional tv at home.

Integration of Content Marketing
Content marketing is not new. Writing fresh content to be viewed as the expert in your industry or field has been a tactic for decades, even before the internet. Effective use of public relations and stories always helps companies drive credibility and results. The trend is that more and more companies are personalizing their content to reach various target markets. Predictions indicate that content marketing will have the biggest impact on companies in 2018 in regards to their marketing plans. Content marketing impacts your brand, credibility, online reputation, search engines, and your customers and prospects. If you don’t have a content marketing strategy, you should…if you want to run with the big dogs.

Integrating the Search Engine into Your Content Marketing
The face of search has been evolving since its inception, and will continue to morph in the form of SERPs (search engine results pages). Smart marketers always use important techniques, like on-page meta data, sitemaps and robots text files, along with off-page strategic link building, citations and other tactics to improve organic traffic to their websites. Search engines try to take that information and deliver the best results specific to the user, walking that line between organic traffic and paid advertising. Additional tactics like related content/questions and review sites will continue alter the way SERPs serve up links. (more on SERPs in a future blog post) AdWords will also continue to innovate the way they allow budgets to be distributed to different target demographic groups and businesses will need to keep up or risk being left behind.

Privacy Protection
While this may not seem like a marketing initiative, it proves to be a very important trait to customers.  With all the security breaches in 2017 (over 143 million Americans were affected by the Equifax breach alone) businesses will want to promote the fact that their sites are secure and will protect important, personal information.  HTTPS and SSL certificates associated with encrypted data and secure sites IS the wave of the future.

Interactivity and Engagement
You need to keep your customers/prospects/viewers constantly interested in what you have to say.  You need to give them something that they will do to interact and engage with you. Open forums and social sites that encourage transparent communication let prospects know and understand the experience of buying from you.  Thy see it directly online through your existing staff and current client base. Building an environment for interaction and engagement on your website and social media can help replace the third party credibility lost from newspaper articles and old school public relations. And it is not just on your website and social sites, think also about your emails and newsletters, and all of your push marketing tactics. Adding things like surveys or polls, videos, and GIFS instead of photos add interest and keep your audience engaged.

It’s important to stay up to date with marketing trends that will help your business continue to move forward, especially when beginning a new year. Starting off right builds momentum and sets the stage for future success. However, not everything you read about is THE all-important method. If you’ve found success with your already established communications, don’t quit. Keep it up and possibly add some new techniques into the mix. No one wants to re-invent the wheel, but changing things up adds interest and garners increased engagement.

If you are ready for an experienced marketing company to push your business forward in 2018, and drive more results, contact Marketing Relevance at marketingrelevance.com or 847-259-7312.