As 2019 draws to a close, it’s a good time to evaluate how much actual payoff you’re getting from your digital marketing activities. What can you expect to work in 2020, and how can you get the most from your digital marketing dollars?
Here is a list of 10 influential trends that will affect the way digital marketing will be done in 2020.
1. D2C Distancing Itself from Facebook
The Direct-to-Consumer business model tends to lead the way into new trends, because of its relatively new emergence in the field of e-commerce. The current trend that they’re leading us into is a gradual move away from Facebook as a primary source of advertising. While still very popular amongst users, Facebook’s advertising fees are just too high. And D2C companies simply aren’t having it. The takeaway is this: whether your business is D2C or not, you might find a competitive advantage by skipping Facebook advertising. Consider finding a more cost-effective place to put your marketing dollars.
2. Intent Marketing
Intent Marketing will be an important focus for 2020. Online customers, and especially B2B purchasers of high-ticket items, will expect a much more personalized buyer’s experience. To meet this expectation, businesses will have to work hard at establishing the actual intent of decision-makers, and to identify where in the buyer’s journey they fall at a particular time. Without taking the time to analyze buyer intent, businesses will run the risk of wasting valuable resources targeting the wrong customers, or the right customers at the wrong time.
3. Interactive Content
Text, pictures, and multimedia have long been staples of marketing content. But in 2020, they just won’t be enough anymore. That’s because the upcoming generation is so bombarded by multimedia that they’re numb to it. In 2020, the new trend will be interactivity. If your content doesn’t have an interactive object that the customer can manipulate, they’re going to be bored, and you’re going to get ignored.
4. AI in Email Marketing
Artificial Intelligence is already becoming commonplace. So, it’s time for email marketing to keep pace.
AI can help with anything from automation, personalization, segmentation, send-time optimization, content, and even subject lines. That will improve the quality of marketing emails, and take a lot of weight off of the email marketers, too. Online AI tools currently on the market include Boomtrain, Phrasee, Optimail, Seventh Sense, and Siftrock, just to name a few.
5. The Rise of MMS for Marketing
There is a new trend in the use of mobile phones for marketing. More and more, marketers will be leaning away from SMS and toward MMS in 2020. But, that shouldn’t be a surprise. We already know that images and audio enhance the connection with potential customers.
As mobile data availability grows, MMS technology will enable businesses to send more than simple text. They will move beyond traditional SMS to take advantage of MMS as a medium for more complex messages.
6. SEO for Voice Search
Optimizing search engines has long been a top priority in digital marketing. But now, with the rapid expansion of AI services, the nature of the game is changing. More and more, customers find it easier to speak into a device than to find a keyboard and type in a search. That’s why SEO has to take natural voice and speaking styles into account when performing SEO. Written word isn’t identical to spoken word. So, to be truly optimized, you have to think ‘voice’ in 2020.
7. Chatbots on the Rise
Chatbots aren’t new technology. But they are highly effective and their use is rapidly growing. And they’re getting smarter, too, thanks to advancements in AI. Research projects that in 2020, 85% of customer service will be handled via chatbots. Of course, there are lots of benefits to using them. Most chatbots provide 24-hour service, and they can give instant answers to customer questions. Customers prefer chatbots to wait on hold, or for a call-back service. By 2022, it is estimated that chatbots will save businesses more than $8 billion a year.
8. Conversational Marketing
This generation of consumers is more experience-oriented than in previous generations. In 2020, customers will want one-on-one conversations in real-time when they’re considering a purchase. Customers these days like to be informed before they buy. But researching can be time-consuming and exhausting. So, they will appreciate having competent people to talk to about the products and services they’re looking for. Conversational marketing can be easily implemented. It can be applied across any number of different platforms, such as telephone, SMS or chat.
9. Video Marketing
Video is an incredibly effective medium for marketing, and 2020 will be no different. The numbers can do most of the talking.
- 70% of customers have shared a brand’s video.
- 72% of businesses say video has improved their conversion rate.
- 52% of customers say video makes them more confident in online purchases.
- 68% of consumers prefer to learn about new products and services through videos.
- A website with video is 50x more likely to drive organic content.
And video can be used on a broad range of platforms, from your website to your social media accounts.
10. Content Marketing in SEO
The importance of SEO is not going to diminish in 2020. If anything, it will increase. But the game is changing. SEO is now much more than having the right keywords in your content. Artificial Intelligence is getting better at catching bad content. Specifically, Google is working on systems that better understand natural language. This will allow them to better match searches to appropriate content. That means that just having the right keywords isn’t enough anymore. The quality of your content is absolutely going to impact your SEO.
So, keep these trends in mind for 2020, with an eye towards making sure your digital marketing efforts are aligned with them. That way, you’ll be ready to maximize the impact of your marketing expenditures.