It seems like yesterday we were writing about the 2015 digital marketing trends and already it’s time to highlight trends for 2016! If there’s one thing we can say about digital marketing, it’s that digital marketing is always changing. It’s impossible to predict exactly what will happen but marketers can make educated guesses and prepare accordingly.
We’ve compiled a list of four trends that we think are worth noting for the upcoming year. It’s a combination of predictions from other experts in the marketing field as well as examining trends we encountered towards the end of this year. Are you ready for some of the trends we’ve predicted for 2016?:
- Watch Out for Ad-Blockers – If there’s one thing every marketer dreads, it’s ad blockers. You could create the world’s most engaging advertisement but if nobody sees it, then what’s the point? Advertisers targeting millennials can lose up to 40% of their ad revenue because of ad blocking and this number will continue to grow as millennials learn to avoid branded commercials. Brands are forced to think of new ways to reach their target audiences and one way we’ve seen this is in native advertising. Ad blockers don’t prevent native advertisements from displaying because they feel like non-promotional content. Consider contacting an influencer among your target market to create advertising content for your brand.
- Pick the Right Social – Social media marketing became a hot topic this year as marketers increasingly took to social platforms to spread the word. Part of successful marketing is the result of knowing where your audience lives on social or anticipating which new platform your target market will flock to. Older platforms like Facebook and Twitter are reaching a point of saturation and the promise of instant, more personal connections make platforms like Snapchat and Periscope much more enticing to marketers. CIO predicts less than a full percentage point increase in the use of Facebook, a staggering number when you compare it to Instagram’s growth which is projected to be 49% (up from 32% in 2015). With a platform like Instagram or Snapchat, marketers can deliver content directly to the consumer and make consumers feel more connected to a brand.
- Everything Must Be Mobile – We’ve all heard this one before. Year after year we’re told that marketing is moving towards mobile devices but 2015 really proved that the number of mobile-users are quickly exceeding the number of desktop-users in the United States. As consumers become more attached to their mobile devices we see social platforms begin to integrate e-commerce features into their networks. Instagram’s “Shop Now” takes consumers directly to a salespoint with a single tap, turning a picture into a potential purchase. Similarly, apps are becoming more integrated with our everyday lives. Not only will we be shopping for everything online but we’ll be relying on mobile apps to regulate many aspects of our lives. Every app that an individual downloads to their phone signals to others how your app fits their lifestyle and values.
- Marketing Meets Wearable Tech – Do you own an Apple Watch? How about a FitBit? Chances are if you don’t own one then you probably know someone who does have one of these wearables. While only 7% of consumers own a wearable Internet of Things device, that number is expected to rise to 28% by 2016. But what does the rapid adoption of wearables mean for marketers? It means receiving more data on literally every move your target market is making. A wearable is meant to keep track of an individual’s physical and emotional health but it also sends that data to marketers looking to target wearables directly. Wearables are all about “personal data” so it’s important for marketers to push content that is not promotional or feels like an advertisement. Users want recommendations, not advertisements, for products and services that can enhance the wearable user’s well-being and personal data.
By no means is this list complete. In fact, we could go on and on about predictions for 2016’s digital marketing landscape but we believe these are four overarching areas that are especially important to take note of. If you found this post beneficial, you may also be interested in our new post: Top 10 Digital Marketing Trends for 2017.