I always hesitate when I read all of the “New Marketing Tactics for the New Year” posts. Yet, I can never stop myself from reading them because I know it is smart to consistently streamline your marketing strategies and techniques. The key with digital marketing and online advertising is to constantly evaluate your results, while shaping and refining your strategies and slowly adding new ones. Here are 7 "Balls to the Wall" Marketing Trends to Look for in 2014.
With companies like Adroll exploding in popularity, ad retargeting is becoming a wave of the future for any online business that sells products or services, especially for Ecommerce sites. On average, only 2-5% of customers purchase on their first visit to a site. Ad retargeting uses coding to keep track of these customers and retarget them by continually displaying your brand almost everywhere they go on the web. Imagine this: It is Thursday, and Susie visits your online store, http://dembootswithdafur.com. She browses around, and desperately wants to buy one of your pairs of boots, but she doesn’t get paid until Friday, so she gets side tracked and ends up going about her day. The next day, after work, she hops online, completely forgetting she had looked at your site yesterday. Everywhere she goes online, whether it is a website or social platform like facebook, she sees the EXACT pair of shoes that she was looking at, just a click away. That is ad retargeting, and it is super effective Bam, Susie just got dem boots, and all dat fur! If you haven’t noticed retargeting like this happening to you, I can guarantee you will in 2014. Ad retargeting is growing in popularity among some of the largest companies and best marketers in the industry.
It is likely by no surprise to you, that this is on the list of trends for 2014. Mobile and device usage grew by over 70% in 2013, and continues to be a trend amongst consumers. Mobile marketing data/statistics from 2013 suggest that over 50% of global mobile web users now use their smartphones, tablets or devices as their primary avenue for browsing the internet. Now, any marketer with half a brain will tell you that catering to this mobile crowd is an absolute must for 2014. From responsive websites, to mobile Ecommerce, you need to make sure that mobile marketing is one of the highest priorities on your list.
Gather a bunch of marketers in a room, bring up the topic of content marketing and watch the sparks fly. There is endless debating on the subject of content marketing and its effectiveness in the online world. According to Hubspot, Social Media Today and about a gazillion other sources, content marketing isn’t going anywhere, and as a matter of fact, it will continue to grow and remain on of the #1 ways to market your business online. Creating rich and original content that provides value, is one of the fastest ways to boost your inbound marketing while sending email lists and sales through the roof. Be sure to follow businesses like Content Marketing Institute and Fizzle in addition to marketers like Seth Godin, Neil Patel and Pat Flynn. I would highly recommend creating a Feedly account and following trustworthy sources, like the above mentioned, very closely.
Email Marketing is another subject that gets marketers heated. Most of the time, it is because there are 1 million and a half ways to do it, which may all look different for different companies and entrepreneurs. Bottom line is this that email marketing is effective. But, looking ahead into 2014, and considering other emerging trends, you should ensure that your email marketing efforts are highly saturated with rich content and social integration. Integrating social media into your email marketing strategies increases click through rates by over 150%. At the same time, adding valuable content to your email marketing strategies can greatly help with content syndication.
Marketers are beginning to realize that infographics are highly effective in content marketing. As Neil Patel says, most of the time when you read the word infographic, you usually see viral in the same sentence. Infographics can deliver a marketing message very effectively, and they can do it in an understanding way that text simply can’t. According to Jeff Bullas, online searches for infographics have increased over 200% in the past 2 years. People are looking for answers, and they want them quick. Whether you are trying to increase brand awareness, effectively deliver a marketing campaign, or just advertise your business online, an infographic is the way to go. Side-note: A lot of companies have inherited the effectiveness of infographics to the point of making the pages on their website look like infographics. Maybe you should consider giving your website a facelift as well ;-)
When it comes to the online world, especially in regards to digital marketing and online advertising, everything can easily become clouded with fake experts and way too much irrelevant information. So, how do you assist your customers in sifting through the online bullcrap to find your gem of a company? Proof! People want proof, and the best way to deliver proof is by displaying case studies and white papers on your website. This also helps immensely with sales because people want to know that you have helped others in the same situations/predicaments they are in. Think about it like this: If you ever had to have brain surgery, for whatever unfortunate reason, would you want to go to a doctor that has performed few brain surgeries, or one that has a track record of success. It is a very simple concept, and can massively increase your sales strategies for 2014. You can also use eBooks in that same manner, as eBooks show the knowledge you have on a subject, and can build credibility and qualified prospects. It can also be a huge asset to your content marketing strategies as well as massively increasing your email subscriber list, by offering a free eBook in exchange for a users email. Then, at that point, they will be in the top of your beautifully constructed email sales funnel :-)
With Google Plus now being the 2nd largest social network, more and more discussions and debates are arising in the marketing world. I assume people won’t shut up about it until the day that Google surpasses Facebook in users, and maybe not even then. Until then, you can take Google Plus advice with a grain of salt, however, don’t deny wisdom from the thousands of marketing geniuses who have experienced Google Plus’ effectiveness and have seen insane results. Google Plus is constantly changing their algorithms and features of the platform, including the new promoted posts that will be coming out soon. In 2014 you should consider meshing Google Plus into your content marketing strategy, as you will reap many benefits from doing so. From SEO, to ranking on SERP pages, etc., Google plus will continue to take over the social world and begin to emerge at the forefront of many digital marketing strategies.