Tech trends that are shaping digital marketing.
1. Personal Digital Assistants (PDA) & Natural Speech Patterns
Advances in voice recognition and AI have brought you to the era of PDAs. You're probably interacting on a regular basis with software like Alexa, Siri, Google Now, or Cortana. It's becoming more common for these virtual assistants to interact with each other.
Devices controlled through speech present a new challenge. The search algorithms they use are favorable to natural language SEO, or spoken searches phrased as questions. Long-tail keywords in content should also include search terms like price or location.
As assistants become more commonplace, marketers going forward should prepare to focus on spoken searches since they will outpace textual phrases.
2. Social Media, Storytelling, and Fear of Missing Out
Optimizing your stories to social media is a great way to grow your digital audience. Keep in mind the preferred formats for each platform, such as Instagram vs. Facebook. The goal should always be sparking conversations and engaging with followers.
On-the-go mobile users are becoming more receptive to time-limited stories that utilize the fear of missing out (FOMO) method on hot topics. Find out what your consumers are passionate about and dole out great content on that subject to maintain their interest. The more you can match quality content to major interests, the more shares you'll get.
Captivating storytelling campaigns are a team effort, so ensure your marketing department has the right tools. Having an efficient cloud-based platform like OneDrive that enables secure access to data and documents is essential here. Having resources available online is becoming increasingly relevant, particularly for remote workers, as it enhances collaboration among team members.
Sharing stories with your followers give your company a heightened air of relevance and are of value to the connected consumer, so make sure your team has the right tools for the job.
3. Social Messaging Automation
Automating social posts can save you a lot of time. But the tools available to you can do more than that. They can also act as a messaging platform that sends content straight to your target audience.
In the future, as marketing systems evolve, it will also become more feasible to tailor this content to various social platforms or personalize them to message recipients. This is to some extent already carried out by AI programs sifting through social media networks to present the most relevant content to share with your audience. Automation is an opportunity to not just save time, but increase accuracy and optimize results.
Having your social messaging campaigns carried out by bots will have additional benefits, like faster responses and lower marketing costs.
4. Real-time Personalization
These smart technologies will enhance the personalization capabilities that happen in real time. You'll be able to present tailored content to all relevant groups of visitors, based on criteria such as IP address. Based on such criteria, automation software can determine the industry or company the visitors might be coming from, and present them with the most relevant content.
For example, when a customer visits for the first time, they will be presented with the most relevant products based on data that’s gathered - these will be the highest rated/popular products since there is no behavioral data yet. Once the visitor starts looking for specific items, such as fitness equipment, they are presented with other products relevant to their preferences.
5. AI & Chatbots
Artificial intelligence has many applications in marketing. The most common applications include analyzing consumer behavior to predict behaviors. AI has become a crucial part of many types of software for its ability to improve its own logic and make better decisions.
Chatbots are a type of AI making a big impact on customer service and many other marketing channels. They respond to input directly from the user, so well that in some cases it's indistinguishable from a live operator. They are utilized to solve the most basic and common issues, for instance, by offering step-by-step instructions to users. If a bot can’t help because an issue or inquiry is complex, they will forward it to a live operator.
A chatbot system can not only handle far more incoming contacts than a human team but promote your current campaigns without fail in every interaction.
6. Mobile Platforms & Micro-Moments
With so many options available online, consumer decisions are now made very quickly. These spontaneous choices are known as "micro-moments". Successful marketers must be able to grab attention and prompt action in a few seconds.
Mobile consumers, in particular, want their expectations to be met immediately or they move on. It's becoming increasingly necessary to have the right content in the right place at the right time. Forward-thinking marketers must devise stratagems for making the most of these micro-moments at every stage of the customer journey.
This is less about persuasive advertising than it is about understanding what consumers are searching for and ensuring that you provide it right then and there.
7. Wearables & IoT
If you're not familiar with the term "Internet of Things", you should seriously get up to speed - it's all around us and growing fast. IoT refers to smart devices that can communicate with people, computer systems, and each other. For the average consumer, this often takes the form of wearables, from the ubiquitous FitBit to the latest generation of smartwatches and ocular gear.
One of the benefits for marketers is that communication over these highly mobile devices can be tracked not just in consumer behavior, but consumer location. Your content, for example, can be tailored to the nearest branch store or the user's community. This might include directions, local sales or events, or personalized discount offers for neighborhood outlets.
Wearable tech is still in its infancy, but with the right apps you can reach out to thousands of consumers with just the right message for each.
The near future will be about developing closer relationships with digital consumers. This is done through an enhanced relevance of content, powered in no small part by AI. What tech are you utilizing to give your customers what they want?