At the dawn of the new year, it is time to question the trends, tools, best practices that marketing professionals will have to adopt and apply to continue to offer consumer-centric marketing. Selligent today unveils its 8 digital marketing trends to follow in 2018, as well as a Trend Joker that should be at the center of the debate.
1. Hyperpersonalization, a must
With the approval of increasingly sophisticated data consumers, brands are extracting rich data footprints from users' online behavior. More and more of them are using them in an innovative way, to better adapt to the specific needs of each user. Biometric technologies and access will become the norm, with facial recognition of the latest iPhone as the backdrop, as consumers expect brands to innovate to create custom-made experiences in 2018.
2. Live video coverage and online events become basic marketing tools
Although video streaming accounts for 75% of online traffic (KPCB), live video now offers the highest value for marketing professionals. The numbers are clear: consumers spend three times more time watching live video than pre-recorded content (Facebook) and 82% of them prefer live branded videos over other social media formats (Live Stream) . But we must ensure upstream effective communication to consumers to inform them of the event and not hesitate to trigger mobile alerts when the live is about to be online, to maximize the number of connections.
3. The RGPD as a marketing opportunity
Consumers are willing to share personal data as long as they have a better experience and brands will have to take up the challenge! The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union, which will enter into force in May 2018, raises the bar for data security. Rather than fearing this new regulation, brands can use it to strengthen their customer relationship. The principle of transparency embedded in the GDPR offers the opportunity to gain the trust of consumers - and win against the competition - by creating transparent data collection policies. Meanwhile, data breaches such as the recent piracy of Equifax or Uber, constitute public relations disasters and reinforce the feeling of distrust of consumers.
4. Create utility for the consumer with personalized mobile messages
The comfort and ease in the customer experience are today essential in the interaction with the consumer. Marketing professionals respond to this trend by using embedded mobile messages to better support the customer at every step of the journey. Whether through WhatsApp, Wechat, GroupMe, Facebook Messenger, Snapchat or good old SMS, over 69% of digital media contacts go through mobile devices (ComScore). There is therefore no reason to procrastinate on this point. In view of this, in 2018, marketing professionals must design customer journeys first by mobile route, based on micro-moments in real time. The major obstacle? Get the client to accept notifications and location sharing. The condition of adhesion to these devices? use these tools intelligently, knowing how to dose and be responsive when interacting.
5. Exploit the subtle power of niche audiences
To shout out to spread marketing messages in the public square is to go back ten years. In 2018, big brands will find value by addressing niche audiences that will make up for their smaller size with remarkable commitment and loyalty. But it is essential to target these well-informed consumers with relevant, rich and renewed content, to maintain positive and lasting relationships.
6. Master social marketing and paid native advertising
The time of the unlimited commitment (and not paying) of the public on social networks is well and truly over. Facebook has put a brake on organic reach, marketing professionals must release budgets to stimulate publications or appear on Facebook newsfeed. Creativity will be paramount, to create interest and engagement, whether it's attracting audiences through live video events or designing ads in Facebook Messenger. In 2018, the key will be to blend into the table with native ads, including search-related ads, sponsored ads, editorial content, or seamlessly integrated ads.Quality native ads work well, with a click rate four times higher than traditional mobile ads (Polar).The key here is to offer real-time, relevant and hyper-personalized experiences via all channels, based on consumer intelligence.
7. Spread the message on its own channels
As consumers become aware of new content through social networks and mobile notifications, the place of publication of this content becomes less important today. As long as the content is "searchable", relevant and useful, users will find it. In 2018, we can think that brands will gain more value by publishing on their own channels - branded website, online trading platform, blog, mobile application - than on third party sites. Three factors explain this evolution: firstly, the content published on the channel of the brand "lives" naturally at the click of the conversion (online shopping portal, etc.); secondly, the brand-specific channels allow customization for each consumer, for example a dynamic website tailored to the purchase history or site path; finally, all data on the behavior and preferences of the customer belong to the brand, and not to a third party application or social platform.
8. Artificial intelligence to respond in real time to the needs of consumers
Latest trend and not least ... Advanced technology, artificial intelligence will become more and more accessible. According to Salesforce, industry players anticipate an increase in AI utilization of 53% over the next two years. Integrated with engagement platforms, the AI will bring a new level of relevance and personalization in the automatically generated content. Instead of having to explore multiple streams of data, the AI will determine in real time the best channel and messages most relevant to a consumer. More generally, the AI will profoundly change the way of designing customer journeys. In the words of Nick Worth, Chief Marketing Officer at Selligent: " In the near future, customer journeys will no longer be pre-designed and static. It will be possible, thanks to the AI, to follow the customers and to answer their real needs . "