Change is inevitable and things change with each passing day. Though we may not notice them in our day to day lives when 365 of them cumulatively pass by, drastic changes can be seen and those are the same significant changes we call "trends".
From what was trending last year to what will become a trendsetter in the coming year, we all look forward to incorporating those trends into our lives. While some are improvisations from the mistakes of the past year, others are innovations we want to incorporate in the New Year; basically, anything and everything that is widely accepted and also dominates a particular industry becomes the trend of that year.
Coming to the digital ecosystem, as of now, 52,625 GB of Internet traffic is being consumed every second and is undoubtedly increasing with each passing moment. More than three billion Netizens are browsing through terabytes of content present on the web. It indirectly tells us that the scope for digital marketing has infinite possibilities when it comes to promoting or advertising products and services.
There is unexplored potential in the realms of the digital marketing world. Like I said, there would be trends which rocked 2017 or fetched great results and then there would be blunders which aren't supposed to be dragged into 2018.
Trends change every year and that's how we evolve, grow and prosper. The world is going digital today, there's a reason why you don't text anymore but video call; why you don't type anymore but dictate and your smartphone's virtual assistant writes it down for you. There's a change which is witnessed by the digital marketing world and here are a few trends which will dominate 2018:
$70.05 billion is the revenue live streaming will reach by the time we celebrate 2021, which means people today are more inclined toward live videos and 90 per cent of them want quality in them. If you're a part of digital marketing or do it for a firm, then live videos have a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 18 per cent as per a recent report.
You will be surprised to know that advertisement views on a live video have a 113 per cent year-on-year growth. To be precise, you should go Live the next time you think of digital marketing; but before that, go on with the following five points to dominate the world of digital marketing in 2018.
Social Media Influencer Marketing
While you might still be the one who thinks social media influencer marketing is expensive, it has a Return on Investment (ROI) of 11 times more than that of traditional digital marketing. It is going to be the trendsetter in 2018 when 71 per cent of the people make their purchases based on social media referrals and, more importantly, 94 per cent of marketers will tell you that influencer marketing has positive results.
A picture speaks a thousand words; while that is an ancient proverb today, it still applies in the digital marketing ecosystem. Images are perfect if you want to make an impact on people digitally and they make quite a difference as Netizens retain 65 per cent of the information when served in the form of visual content. Moreover, visualized content will also see a hike and dominate 2018 because 74 per cent of the marketers already use it in their social media marketing.
Social Media Analytics
How do you feel when you see an advertisement irrelevant to you or a website which asks for a donation the moment you are redirected? Well, that's already being addressed by social media experts and you will soon be out of the 74 per cent lot who are frustrated to see content which is of no help. Analytics have advanced and in 2018 the Internet will not dominate your mood anymore; you will get personalized content as a result of changing trends that will dominate in the coming years.
Digital comes along with encryption and the people who make a living out of decrypting it (hacking). Only 17 per cent of today's Netizens feel that their personal information is secure online. That's not a lot of people. It's also one of the biggest challenges faced by the digital marketing pundits; if most of the people won't share their details online.
So it goes with the counterpart i.e. security and with better encryption, rest assured, 77 per cent of internet users will rely on digital marketing if they know how their personal information is being used. In the end, a better, more secure and encrypted system will dominate the others in 2018.
This one becomes the deal-breaker when chatbots are the next big thing in the coming years and by 2020, 85 per cent of customer service interactions will be handled by bots. The trend has started to dominate the industry already as 27 per cent of the people are unable to figure out whether they spoke to a person or a chatbot in their last customer service interaction. Financially speaking, savings made from opting to virtual assistance, will also reach up to $8 billion by 2022.
In the end, finance matters folks and it will always dominate the world of digital marketing, be it an investment in influencer marketing, savings from virtual assistance or better revenues with the help of visualised content and social media analytics.
(The author is co-founder and CCO, WittyFeed, one of India's largest content platforms)
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