The Top 10 Digital Marketing Trends in 2018 That Will Continue Next Year

You are already past mid 2018, and hopefully, you are aware of the digital marketing trends of this year. While a lot of online trends come and go each year, there are some that stick around. Similarly, some digital marketing trends of 2018 are here to stay. You will see them in the next year as well. Therefore, it is better that you make them a part of your online marketing strategy.

The Top 2018 Digital Marketing Trends That Will Enter 2019

Promotions and Deals

They have been around for quite some time, and it does not seem they are going away any sooner. For as long as shopping is alive, you can safely say that discount promotions and codes are not going to disappear. These discount deals offer great benefits to the consumers and get them excited to purchase stuff. Use social media, SMS or push notifications on mobiles, but be sure to make your customers know of your promotions and discounts.

An important thing to consider here is designing your promotions and discounts intelligently. Many companies decide to offer flat discounts on their products and services. While these flat discounts are pretty attractive, they don’t bring much value to your business. You want to create your promotions so that they can benefit your business in multiple ways. Rather than offering a flat discount on your bestseller, you should tie it with another one of your products.

That’s how the companies are designing their promotions. For example, you could offer a discount only if the customer orders two of your products/services together. In a nutshell, promotions and discounts have to be smart too in 2018.

Automated or Programmatic Advertising

Automation of advertising has helped online brands hugely. In the past years, buying advertisements and targeting the right people was a manual job. Today, you can do it programmatically. Let artificial intelligence do its magic of selecting the right advertisements for you and even pick the locations where your ads can get the most attention and impressions.

You have to get some basic understanding of programmatic advertising before you get into this game. It is not like Google AdWords. Instead, programmatic ads are display ads or banner ads. These ads can appear on the devices of your choice including smartphones, laptops, tablets, etc. Of course, the world is moving towards automation and programmatic advertising is only a part of that shift.

It is in its initial stages right now but quite effective right from the scratch. These ads are not random. Instead, they use cookies, customers’ past behavioral data, etc. to place ads that are most relevant. In short, these are not your same old annoying, irrelevant, and intrusive ads anymore.

Video Marketing

Video marketing has been rising in popularity for past couple of years. If you think its fame has faded, think again. Video marketing is not going away and will not go away any time soon. More and more content on the internet is converting into video. That’s because internet accessibility is increasing, internet speeds are getting better, 5G is on the way, and the social networks are supporting video. Twitter and Facebook both autoplay videos while you are scrolling the page.

It is clear from how modern social networks work that video is at the center of digital marketing today. In most cases, people don’t mind videos auto-playing on their devices. In addition to that, you have YouTube that allows you to take advantage of billions of people that use the platform on a daily basis. In fact, YouTube has also introduced new features into video marketing. Take the example of bumper ads. These short 6-second ads are non-skippable. However, you have to use the best visuals and video marketing tactics to convey your message to the people within six seconds.

Data-driven Marketing

Data is at the core of all that you see on the internet. From targeted advertisement to creating buyer personas and predictive models, data-driven marketing is the new trend. One of the major aims of today’s digital marketing is personalization. Even personalization depends heavily on the data you collect from your customers. Email marketing is a perfect example of how data helps companies improve their marketing.

Rather than sending generic emails to the customers, you can send targeted and personalized emails. These emails start by addressing customers with their names and contain content that’s relevant to their interests. You can use special software tools to segment your customers based on where they are in your sales funnel. Data empowers social media marketing as well. Data is the reason for the popularity of Facebook’s targeted ads.

Proper Use of Keywords

In the previous years, it had started to seem to marketers that keywords were not necessary anymore. Keywords might have lost half of the importance, but they have gained it back in 2018. Google’s latest updates have made it clear that marketers have to focus on keywords even today. However, they have to offer valuable content along with keywords. Keyword stuffing is still a sin.

Proper use of keywords starts with detailed research on the keywords. You have to identify the most lucrative keywords for your industry and business first. Once you have identified the keywords, you have to create content that uses them naturally. They have to fit into the context of your content. If Google sees keywords appearing out of context in your text, it can penalize you.

You have several tools that will help you identify the right keywords for your business. You should also keep an eye on your competitors to know what strategies are working for them.

Social Media Marketing

This trend is not going down anytime soon. Social media marketing remains strong and it is gaining even more acceleration with time. The reason why social networks are only getting popular with time is because of their partnerships with network service providers. In many countries of the world, people can use services like WhatsApp and Facebook free. If not free, they get limited free internet MBs to use these social communication platforms for a limited time.

In a nutshell, you are targeting a vast audience through social networks today. You aren’t interacting with only the rich people with smartphones and laptops. Even the people from villages and underdeveloped areas now have access to the internet and all the social networking platforms.

Marketing with Nativity

Nativity in marketing is a trend that started a few years ago. However, companies are soon realizing the importance of doing so. First, you have to come out of the impression that the entire world reads and understands English. In reality, you have billions of people in the world who don’t understand English. So, when you post content in English, you have already missed billions of people from your strategy.

Translation is your first step to bring nativity in your content. You want to translate your content in the language of the people you are marketing to. Even your blog posts and the content you share on social media should be in multiple languages. Not only does it communicate your message to a broader audience but also sends an impression to your prospects that you care.

You can see that many US websites have Spanish versions of their websites too. In addition to that, they provide customer service and support specifically in Spanish. So, if you have to make language adjustments within the US, why shouldn’t you make them outside of the US?

Platform-specific Marketing

What this means is that you have to adjust your marketing according to the platform you are on. You can’t share your Facebook content as is on Twitter or LinkedIn. You have to understand the natures of these platforms and design your posts accordingly. Software developers have realized this trend and that’s why you have software tools to help you adjust your marketing according to the social networks. For example, some tools let you design your posts specifically for Instagram. The same post in the same format might not look the best on Facebook or Twitter.

Instagram and Pinterest are visual-based platforms. You want to avoid long posts as much as you can on these platforms. On the other hand, Facebook is the perfect place to write long posts whereas Twitter’s character limit is set to 280 characters.

These variations in the natures of the platforms attract different types of users as well. You can expect a lot of teenagers on Facebook. However, that’s not the case with LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a platform for professionals. So, if your product is more suitable for professionals, you might focus more on marketing on LinkedIn.

Optimization for Voice Search

Another crucial trend in today’s digital marketing is optimization for voice search. You can also call is adjustment with artificial intelligence. More and more people are switching to voice-based search in their daily lives now. Countries like the US and Canada are the major role players in this shift. Voice-based searches on Google are now at 20%.

Is there a difference between voice-based searches and text-based searches? Yes, there is a huge difference between the two. Think about it: do you write and speak the same way? If you pay attention, there is a difference between how people talk and write. When it comes to writing your query, you might type something like “national anthem US”. On the other hand, when it comes to saying the query, you might say something like “play the US national anthem on YouTube”.

These differences are huge and you have to adjust your marketing according to them. There is a lot less effort in saying things out than there is in typing them. For that reason, voiced-based queries usually have more words in them and their style is conversational. Another thing to pay attention to is the contextual searches. Google Assistant is at the forefront here. Google Assistant allows people to perform voice searches based on context.

For example, the first query from a person could seem something like, “What’s the name of the original soundtrack of Titanic?” The very next query after that can be, “Who sang it?” Google assistant’s artificial intelligence and machine learning allows it to understand the question contextually. Furthermore, certain words e.g. near me, are incredibly common in voice searches. Therefore, you need a sound strategy to market for voice-based searches.

Mobile Marketing

Mobile marketing is not a new concept anymore. However, it is unfortunate that many of the businesses have not taken it seriously to date. When you don’t optimize your marketing for mobile users, you are refusing to communicate with billions of people. You have to make a lot of adjustments to make your marketing efforts suitable for mobile devices.

The first step to mobile marketing is creating a website that appears pleasant on mobile devices. The techniques available are responsive designs and mobile-specific websites. Mobile website are specifically for mobile devices. They won’t appear optimized if you open them on desktop devices. On the other hand, responsive designs, as the name suggests, are responsive to the screen size.

These are fluid designs i.e. they act like water. A responsive website will adjust according to the size of the screen. However, its only purpose is not just to fill the screen space. It requires optimization too for it to appear suitable for small screens.

Concluding Thoughts

You can expect these trends to continue in 2019. Some of these trends have continued from 2017 and even years before that. However, your success with them still depends on how you use them. You can’t create videos just for the sake of marketing. You have to understand what makes videos attractive and attention-grabbing before creating them. Similarly, you have to know how to benefit from other trends. The most important thing to remember is consistency and determination. Keep tenacious with your marketing and wait for some time before you can notice some visible results.

According to our CEO Guy Galboiz, an important thing to consider here is designing your promotions and discounts intelligently. Many companies decide to offer flat discounts on their products and services. While these flat discounts are pretty attractive, they don’t bring much value to your business. You want to create your promotions so that they can benefit your business in multiple ways. Rather than offering a flat discount on your bestseller, you should tie it with another one of your products.