It is likely that if you are reading this article, you at least have some sense of what digital marketing is, and why it’s important. After all, you cannot browse the internet without being accosted by multiple different forms of digital marketing, whether you realize it or not. So, why is digital marketing more important than ever, and what can you expect to see in the future? Let’s take a look at the importance of digital marketing in 2019.
Digital marketing in 2019 will see full utilization of social media for a company’s marketing strategy needs. With 3.484 billion social media users worldwide, this number has already grown by 9% since last year. With social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube offering free accounts, there is no reason why businesses shouldn’t be taking full advantage of this lucrative digital marketing opportunity. When it comes to social media, visuals will be focused on more than ever before, versus focusing on text. With the amount of competition in both the online and the offline world, delivering a message as quickly and effectively as possible is especially important, therefore, the use of video is becoming more popular than ever before in social media. This can be seen by simply scrolling through your Facebook or Instagram feed – odds are, a significant amount of the ads you see are going to be in video form, versus the one or two you may have seen in the past amongst photo ads. ‘Live’ video will also become increasingly more popular in social media, as it creates a live customer experience which allows potential customers to ask questions on the spot, and to find out more about your business. It also creates a sense of trust with your customers, giving a face to the name of your business, and therefore building brand awareness.
Have you noticed the increase of online artificial intelligence within the past year alone? This is only going to grow in 2019, as companies are realizing the importance of having customer assistance available around the clock. When we want information, we want it now, regardless of what time of the day or night it is (we sound a little impatient, don’t we?). Chatbots are available 24/7 to answer your customer’s questions with pre-programmed answers by simulating human conversation. While only a small percentage of businesses currently use chatbots, this will not be the case for long. It is predicted that by the year 2020, 85% of customer interactions will be completed without speaking to an actual human! Imagine your conversion rates skyrocketing without having to hire more customer service reps or public relations employees!
Personalization Through Data
This is a trend that is continuously growing with digital marketing efforts, and for good reason. The ability to personalize your customer’s experience through stored data has proven to be a digital marketing technique that works. This is demonstrated across many different online retailers, with sites like Amazon being at the forefront of this technique. Amazon requires you to “sign in for your best experience”. From there, everything from your homepage to suggested add-ons are personalized to you. Browsing a particular item? Amazon will show you similar items that you might like, items that are related to your browsing history, and also what others have bought that have recently purchased this item. Personalization through data not only applies to this technique, but can also be applied through search engine optimization, and through email marketing. In fact, personalization through email marketing is proving to be more effective than ever, whether applied to personalized products and promotions, or implementing the use of the customer’s name or birthday. Personalization through data all comes down to making the customer feel like you care about them and their needs, and are willing to go the extra mile as a retailer or service provider in order to meet them.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Search engine optimization has been a reigning digital marketing champ for some time now. So, what has changed in 2019? Well, first of all, black hat techniques are not going to cut it, and your business cannot be pumping out content just for the sake of it. In order to rank on Google, your business has to be producing top quality content that is insightful, on topic, and full of relevant keywords (basically, don’t try to trick potential customers into visiting a site that has nothing to do with what they’re looking for). Both RankBrain and Dwell Time are going to become increasingly more important to you in your quest for SEO optimization. In case you don’t know, RankBrain is a form of artificial intelligence that is a part of Google’s core algorithm in processing search engine results, and also Google’s third most important ranking factor. Dwell Time is essentially the amount of time that someone spends on your site – although it has not officially been named as part of Google’s ranking factor, it definitely factors in. For example, if someone clicks into your website and clicks out after ten seconds, your rank will drop, as this means that they did not find what they were looking for.
Voice Search Optimization
You may argue that this is not a form of digital marketing – however, optimizing your webpage for the most in demand forms of web browsing is most definitely a form of digital marketing. Making sure that your website is optimized when it comes to voice searching is a way to make sure that your company isn’t missed. In fact, by the year 2020, it is estimated that 50% of all searches will be made by voice search. Some ways to optimize your content for voice search optimization is by not only thinking about what people are searching for, but how they would search for it. For example, if they are searching in the form of a question (which they often do), try to answer as many questions as you can about your product or service on your company’s website. You can also include more “conversational” keywords that someone might use when they’re speaking as opposed to when they’re typing, as well as making sure your website is as mobile friendly as possible.
Not only is the importance of a digital marketing strategy at an all time high in 2019, but the ways in which digital marketing efforts are being used are constantly growing and changing. By staying up to date with the latest digital marketing tactics and trends, you are on your way to doing everything you can to set your company up for success.