We’re nearly two months into the new year, and here at Windsorborn, we’re starting to see trends shape up that we expect will impact the rest of 2019.

Check out our round-up below as you finalise your digital strategy for the rest of the year to come:

Content continues to play a big role…

In a Smart Insights survey of 985 respondents, content marketing came out first as the single marketing activity participants felt would have the largest commercial impact on their businesses in 2019.

Image Source: Smart Insights

This result is hardly surprising. Although some media outlets claim content marketing is dead, the Content Marketing Institute’s 2019 B2B Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends report found that “74% of B2C content marketers say their organization’s content marketing is much/somewhat more successful compared with one year ago.” Seventy percent of B2B marketers say the same thing.

Investment in content appears to be alive and well in 2019, so if you aren’t yet taking full advantage of this strategy, consider the following tips:

  • If you aren’t doing content marketing consistently, pick one channel and stick with it. You don’t have to have a presence on every platform to be successful with content, but you do have to show up regularly.
  • If you’re using content, but you aren’t seeing results from your efforts, avoid falling behind more content-savvy competitors by working with a partner like Windsorborn who can devise a strategy that’ll drive maximum ROI from your content investments.

 

…But data-driven marketing isn’t far behind

That said, you’ll notice in the Smart Insights chart above that artificial intelligence and machine learning are tied with content marketing in terms of expected impact, while marketing automation and big data follow shortly after.

Taken together, the high rankings of these three disciplines suggests that companies are highly aware of the impact new technology and new methods of data gathering and usage could have on their marketing.

The good news is that you don’t have to be a technology expert to capitalise on the impact of these trends. Instead:

  • Start small. Automate one email sequence at first, rather than your entire marketing landscape. Capture and analyse one new piece of data instead of multiple metrics. Every small step you take builds a foundation for success.
  • Choose only the tools that are appropriate to your industry. If chatbots are becoming a norm in your vertical, start with that piece before adding in more complex technologies.

 

Consumer privacy concerns remain

While marketers are practically salivating over the potential impact of new data and technologies, it’s worth noting that consumers remain skeptical.

CMO’s Vanessa Mitchell notes that, “Australian businesses are going to have to get a lot more agile and transparent in the way they collect, store and use customer data. Even if data is used for consumer benefit, a privacy breach will see consumers move elsewhere. As Facebook and Cambridge Analytica demonstrated this year, a company is only one data breach away from disaster, and no company, no matter how big, can afford this in a consumer-driven environment.”

To avoid a data disaster:

  • Make sure you’re fully GDPR compliant, if you aren’t already.
  • If you store any of your customers’ personal data, it’s worth a call to a cyber security firm to ensure your systems for guarding their privacy are as solid as they can be.
  • Have a plan for disaster. If a breach occurs, rapid action – both to fix the issue and notify affected consumers – is critical. Don’t wait for a disaster to determine how you’ll respond. Plan ahead so that you can get ahead of the issue.

 

Voice search and voice advertising

One final trend that deserves your attention in 2019 is the rise of voice search and voice advertising. According to Marketing Land contributor Chris Loretto, “When 2018 kicked off, we predicted that the emerging popularity of voice-activated devices would encourage advertisers to venture into new territory with voice advertising – and indeed, they did. Today, millions of people use voice devices to ask for information, compile shopping lists and place orders with ease – and advertisers are starting to take notice. But this is only the beginning.”

This topic is so important we’ll be putting together a separate article detailing how Windsorborn customers can take advantage of this trend. Check it out for our best tips on how to leverage voice search and voice advertising for marketing success in 2019.

Are any of these changes on your radar? What other trends are you watching in 2019? Email us studio@windsorborn.com with your suggestions.

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