A new year is a clean slate. We’ve had a little time off after the year-end push of 2017, and we’re ready to hop back in the saddle to make 2018 productive and prosperous. To help you fine tune your marketing strategy and budgets, we asked a few local agencies to share the tip, trend or issue marketers need to be aware of in 2018. Here is what they had to say:
Traditional Media Renaissance
In this age of digital media and 24/7 content marketing, a feature in a glossy magazine or a long-form news story is even harder to land, but also more impactful. Consumers are distracted online, so when they actually sit down to read a magazine or watch a news segment on their televisions, they are naturally more engaged and more likely to be influenced by your message. Print is not dead, and in fact, a study conducted by Canada Post found that paper requires 21% less cognitive effort to process than digital, and it’s also more memorable and easier to understand. We predict that there will be an increased focus on a thoughtful approach to long-lead outreach as the pendulum swings back toward a balance between traditional and digital media.
– Ashlene Larson, Planit
Down with the Bots
Fraud is a big topic in digital advertising and will continue to be in 2018. Bots are becoming increasingly intelligent, and the industry is in need of a solution. Keep an eye on new technology that brings transparency to digital advertising, particularly those leveraging blockchains. There are new platforms being developed such as Basic Attention Token and Adex which will ensure ad impressions are occurring on legitimate websites, that they are being shown to actual people rather than bots, and the entire value chain from publisher to consumer is completely transparent. It is still early but within the next few years I expect we’ll see significant traction in this area.
– Joshua Riddle, Black Label
The Power of Multiple Data Streams
If you want to leapfrog your competitors in 2018, focus on developing multiple outputs for your data. Use your purchase and behavioral data to predict which customers might leave you while you use the same data set to outline next logical purchases for existing customers. Gone are the days of data silos where one data stream equals one data output. Today’s power is found in bringing your data together to develop insights you’d never be able to get to without all of your data working together.
– Michael Kaushansky, Havas helia
Focus on People, Not Just the Data
Recent years have placed emphasis on “Big Data.” But in 2018 we’re graduating the conversation and we’re into the “what do I actually do with Big Data?” phase. And you don’t need a Senior Data Analyst on staff to leverage that data either.
Businesses are figuring out that “Data” doesn’t think, talk, or do analysis. People do. And ethnography will provide the thinking, talking and storytelling to give that Big Data context and really kill it for your business this year.
– Robbie Blinkoff, Ph.D., idfive
Context = Differentiation
Content, design, and technology are the three primary ingredients for brand differentiation in today’s market. Leveraging the capabilities of your marketing technology to inform the design of your content gives you the ability to incorporate context. Context gives you differentiation.
– Steve Navarro, Right Source Marketing
Create Integrated Campaigns
Looking ahead at 2018 there will be a continued focus on digital marketing. This tactic has proven to be a great way to engage with core audiences, track engagement and results, and drive people to action. It is more important than ever for marketing professionals to really understand the intricacies of digital marketing and how to use all of the tools and channels to deliver ROI. You need to be more than Google Certified to be successful – you have to understand each platform, algorithm, etc. You need to know how to set goals, conversion goals, what you want to measure, etc.
Creating integrated campaigns is key to a successful marketing strategy – this means creating campaigns with multiple tactics vs. just a PR or just an advertising component. You don’t want to put all of your eggs in one basket, but create an overarching campaign and execute it across a few channels that will reach you core audience and create a positive brand experience.
– Shana Harris, Warschawski