7 Digital Marketing Trends for 2019
What a difference a year makes. 8760 little hours…
2018 has been a whirlwind of opportunities. Marketing automation has moved from utopia to reality and marketers are realising the endless possibilities of data. And let’s not forget about the GDPR, which empharised the importance of treating personal information with respect.
But 2018 has reached – and passed – its crescendo, and we’re about to tune in on 2019. So get ready to brace yourself and embrace our expert predictions of 2019.
First up is Niklas Jakobsson. You might have read his brilliant and insightful take on marketing operations in this blog post, and he’s back to give you his two cents on three emerging trends and takeaways for 2019 within marketing automation and lead management.
Don’t Lose Sight of Marketing Automation in the Omnichannel Buzz
As marketing automation becomes standardised, B2B companies enjoy the many benefits of having efficient workflows set up between their sales and marketing organisations.
But as 2018 turns 2019, eager B2B marketers will start looking for new and exciting opportunities to climb the evolutionary ladder of data-driven marketing. When marketing automation hits the mainstream, omnichannel marketing is the natural next step towards tearing down siloed marketing channels, and deliver excellent experiences across all customer touchpoints.
I’ll be the first to admit that an ambitious omnichannel strategy is titillating. But don’t let your curiosity get in the way of qualitative progression. Before you set out on your omnichannel quest, you need a strong and proven foundation of marketing automation to walk on.
Why? Because you can’t expect to create a relevant customer experience across all channels unless you have the ability to harness and utilise the data you need to deliver the right information at the right step of the sales funnel.
Slow Down – Don’t Stumble on Your Flows
Marketing automation has swooned the world of digital marketing. But even though it might feel alluring to dive in head first to conquer the advanced flows; it’ll be your detriment.
Because in all honesty: We need to get off the hype train. Even though the possibilities of marketing automation are endless, you need to learn how to walk before you leap.
In reality, this means that you need to get back the basics and nail your welcome flows. That way, you’ll ensure that you get off to the right start before you progress with your nurturing. It’s said that first impressions are the most lasting, so make sure that you never compromise relevance and accuracy over speed.
Don’t Forget Your Salesforce in Your Journey Towards Hyper-Relevance
There’s no denying that relevance lies at the very core of successful marketing. But as we strive to climb towards to summit, we tend to forget that internal communications has a substantial impact on the external.
We all want prospects. We all dream of a constant influx of qualitative leads. And we all dream of a streamlined operations between marketing and sales. But in order to do so, we need to take a page of the marketing automation mantra: deliver the right information, to the right person, at the right time. Or in this case: salesperson.
This means that you need to keep your lead processes clear, and communications even clearer. Consider the tools made available to you, inform about upcoming lead generating/nurturing campaigns and maximise your impact by assigning your lead to the appropriate salesperson. In the end, successful lead management revolves around creating relevance.
Sofie Bjerkefeldt is our e-commerce expert extraordinaire. You might have read her piece on 10 Common E-commerce Challenges That Reduce Your Conversion Rate or even listened to Sofie’s and Sanna’s breakout session at DME. Regardless, she’s back to share her top tips on the latest and greatest trends for 2019.
Make 2019 the Year of Transparency and Trust
Customer scepticism is at an all-time high. As a result, one of the main missions of digital marketing is – and should be – building trust. But the harsh truth is that trust isn’t given – it’s earned through consistency, transparency, and personal relevance.
So even though the world is becoming increasingly automated, you need to ensure that you use the tools at hand to create personable and personalised marketing communications. People create relationships with humans. Just like you expect your friend to be honest and transparent, today’s customers have come to expect the same from you.
But in the wake of GDPR, we need to work hard for the data. But don’t work with a one-way flow of input for businesses to increase revenue in the name of marketing and selling. Rather, focus your efforts on building authentic and strong customer relationships to earn the personal information you need to personalise.
Want to learn how to make trust your currency? Check out our five tips!
Maximise Your Data
It’s all about the customer. Creating relevance, recommending the right products and using marketing automation flows to win back seemingly lost purchases. But with this said; there’s no cookie-cutter formula, and there certainly isn’t a one-size-fits-all mode of successful communications.
The reality is that every customer is different. But you should view the uniqueness as an opportunity – not a burden. After all, to gain knowledge of the personal characteristics and dissimilarities gives you a window to sharpen your segmentation and relevance.
In order to personalise, you need personal data. But here’s the kicker: recent data shows we have created 90% of the world’s data in the past year, but we only make use of 1% of it. Now, not all data is relevant. But a lot of it is.
Marketers need to able to know a customers identity regardless of the device or channels they use. But the process of gaining a holistic understanding and delivering a unified customer experience will require smart technology that connects and aggregates multiple data points, such as a customer data platform (CDP).
The Quest for Ease Might Lead to Voice Search
Siri, Echo Dot, Alexa; the power of ease and convenience can’t be denied much longer. And as DME2018 keynote speaker and Behavioural Economist, Zoë Chance, points out:
“Ease is more powerful than emotions – and almost everything else – as a driver of customer behaviour.”
But as ease becomes a new mantra and customers strive to speed up their every-day efficiency and comfort, what does it mean for the future of marketing? From my stance, and with behavioural patterns in mind, it’s fairly evident that voice search needs to be brought to attention and considered in your SEO-strategy. But how?
Think about how you type, versus how you speak. If you speak “Googlian”, you would
use a few key phrases to optimise the search results. A search for the best Sushi
restaurant in Malmö could be “best sushi malmö.”
Now, try to say that out loud... It feels a bit odd, right?
My point exactly. If you would phrase it yourself my guess is that your vocal cords would
form a sentence along the lines of “What’s the best sushi restaurant in Malmö?”.
The emergence of voice search requires a complete reconfiguration of SEO as we know it. Rather than thinking along the lines of key phrases, we’re going to have to cleverly match questions.
With this being said, voice search will only be fully implemented and incorporated when it actually becomes easier and faster to speak your inquiry – as opposed to typing it. Rather than receiving matches for searches, customers who use voice search will expect answers. And since the written language differs from the spoken, we might encounter a few lingual hiccups in our content...
But even though voice search isn’t currently taking the world of marketing by storm, it’s a channel you’ll need to start including in your search strategy.
Sahar Torabi is APSIS’ very own Legal Counsel with a large “L”. She’s previously guided you through the intricate details of the GDPR and its surrounding myths on our blog and our Instagram stories, and our guiding legal star is back!
The EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Might Dampen Your Data Processing
The year of 2018 has surely been a legal whirlwind for most digital marketers. We’ve weathered the GDPR storm and came out on the other side with an enforced focus on trust. But we’re still not quite in the clear…
In October, I wrote an in-depth article about the second review of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework. But why is the review of particular interest for you, as a digital marketer? Because the U.S. might fall short of the GDPR requirement of “adequate level of protection”. This, in turn, has the potential of suspending all transfers of data to and from the U.S.
The review took place on October 18-20th. As for the outcome? A joint press statement from Commissioner Věra Jourová and Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, was issued on October 19th:
"U.S. and EU officials will continue to work closely together to ensure the framework functions as intended, including on commercial and national-security related matters. Before the end of the year, the Commission will publish a report containing its findings on the functioning of the Privacy Shield."
Even though it’s a bit is up in the air, my advice for you is to try to foresee the unforeseeable and be proactive with your data privacy strategies. The Safe Harbour Agreement came crashing down in 2015, and history might just repeat itself with EU-U.S. Privacy Shield. Because the harsh reality is that a suspension may not be too unrealistic…
Want the full story in order to know how you can prepare for an eventual suspension? Check out my blog post!
As most of us know, the rapid and perpetual technological advancements means that time lapses, well... A little differently for digital marketers. Strategies, internal processes and behavioural patterns are in a constant state of flux, so we need to keep a keen finger on the pulse. But that’s exactly what makes digital marketing so exciting. Don’t you agree?
Want to get a boost of knowledge for the new year? Check out our online library of handbooks and whitepapers!