It’s true that the segments, i.e. blocks, of TV commercials that interrupt shows, movies, or live matches are getting longer but advertising has long since moved to the Internet and is creating some new rules there.
What welcomed us in 2020 in the field of digital marketing and how should you adjust your strategy to the latest trends? We answer exactly that below, so don’t change the “channel”.
- 1. Content Marketing
- 2. Email Marketing
- 3. Advertising on Social Networks
- 4. Video Marketing
- 5. Audio Marketing
- 6. Improved Google Ads and Personalized Advertising
Numerous companies have already largely created their marketing strategies and budgets based on online advertising plans that include ads in online search, social networks, video platforms, mobile applications, and other channels.
There are three main reasons for this. Ads on the Internet are:
- more effective
- reach a larger number of people from a precisely defined target group
Let’s take a look at what trends have stood out and what you should pay special attention to in the coming period, that is if you haven’t already done that.
Imagine having $ 10,000 at your disposal and investing all that money just in creating banners to advertise on the Internet. Would that increase your sales and provide more users of your service offerings?
We’re confident of one thing – it would definitely bring more traffic to your website. If you fail to have quality content and don’t offer website visitors what they are looking for, no one would stay on your website. And that, in turn, certainly wouldn’t lead to an increase in sales.
So, don’t forget that in the first place in terms of importance when it comes to Internet marketing is the placement of content that has real meaning for your target group, providing added value, and that’s relevant, useful, informative, educational, and interesting.
It isn’t enough just to attract the attention of users with an ad that looks interesting. Of course, we aren’t saying that design doesn’t matter, but if users don’t see or read something in your ad that really interests them, they won’t even click on it.
Therefore, content marketing occupies an important place in the field of digital advertising and will continue to be one of the main methods you should apply in 2020 and beyond if you want successful digital campaigns. The best part? You don’t need to have a degree in communication to master the best practices of content marketing.
Digital content marketing takes into account:
- Consistent writing, publishing, and promoting content on your website
- Writing so-called guest blog articles (which you publish on other websites, usually linking to your web pages)
- Creating photos and videos that are to be of high-quality in order to describe your business/products
- Posting educational and interesting content on your business profiles on social networks (e.g. writing articles on LinkedIn)
- Organizing webinars or online courses
- Writing books and/or eBooks on topics in your industry (which you can then, say, offer for free, with the obligation for users to leave an email address to expand your mailing list)
- Regularly creating and sending newsletters
As for item #1, make sure that blogs you publish on your website can be seen all the time. For that, the website itself needs to be visible, so it’s important to choose a reputable web hosting company. For hosting blogs, it has to be the one with strong security and an uptime guarantee. MySQL web hosting providers are considered to be among the very best, especially for WordPress websites, for a simple reason – WordPress uses MySQL as its database management system.
The aim of this type of marketing is to consistently provide original, useful, and interesting content to the target group which, in turn, will bring you:
- Brand recognition among a wider audience
- Trust in your brand
- The loyalty of users/clients/customers
- Long-term business improvement
You know that today, there’s practically no website that doesn’t offer the possibility of subscribing to the daily/weekly/monthly email newsletter. We believe that you’ve signed up for a few newsletters yourself, which you then read regularly (and with pleasure) because they really provide you with useful information or certain benefits and additional content.
The essence of email marketing is in regularly informing recipients about news in your business, promotions, blog articles, new products, and activities – not in the form of direct advertising, but through content that calls for action as well as an interesting story that’s skillfully told.
Email campaigns are one of the most common forms of digital marketing, and they owe their success to elements such as:
- ease of creation
- automated distribution process
- a novel way to promote products, services, and sales promotions
- access to a large number of people
- a sense of personalized messages
- the possibility of influencing purchasing decisions and thus increasing the conversion rate
- possibility of revision and additional adjustment based on insight into analytical data on user interaction with the content of the newsletter
When creating a dedicated email campaign, it’s important to initially make a plan, or engage an email marketing specialist to distribute all email extensions and take care of deadlines. We also suggest that you write unique content for a few emails in advance, which you can do for the entire campaign if feasible.
One of the more popular email marketing tools is Mailchimp, while tools such as ActiveCampaign, Ontraport, Emma, Sendlane, and others are increasingly represented.
Advertising on Social Networks
The well-known rule of “be where your audience is” most clearly can be seen in the example of social networks. What does it mean? It means that, if you have, say, a photo studio – an Instagram profile will be most relevant to your business.
Therefore, it will be a network on which you will be able to publish the most meaningful content for your followers, which will build your reputation, raise awareness of the existence of your studio, and increase the number of followers – potential users of your services.
Each of the social networks has its own logic and advantages, and among the most important in this year are certainly Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook – intentionally written in that order.
Instagram: A Turn Towards Medium-Caliber Influencers
Half a billion people use Instagram daily and, give and take, tens of millions use Instagram stories. This makes this option one of the most popular free online promotion channels. Although the content will be deleted in 24 hours, it’s possible to save it as highlights, that is, as stand-out posts that are easily visible to anyone who visits your profile. That’s why Instagram Story should be your favorite place to post new and interesting content.
The launch of the Instagram TV app called IGTV, two years ago, brought another opportunity for promotion via video – via much longer video than before. IGTV is an independent platform that can be accessed from an existing Instagram profile and allows you to create videos between 10 and 60 minutes long.
When it comes to paid media buys on Instagram, marketing through influencers is still very popular. In 2020, there was a shift towards medium-caliber influencers who have up to 50,000 followers. This is a result of greater credibility with the audience.
The reason for moving away from influential profiles with an audience of millions is primarily the growing number of profiles with purchased followers, which makes them inauthentic and not suityable for the placement of paid promotions. In addition, the costs of promotional announcements with extremely popular influential people have become inaccessible to a large number of companies that want to advertise in this way.
LinkedIn: Various Advertising Opportunities
LinkedIn has long been neglected (or misunderstood) but the popularity of this business social network is growing year by year and currently has nearly 700 million monthly users.
The fact that it’s a network having mostly business people and those in managerial positions and are actively involved in decision-making makes LinkedIn a great choice for promoting your business and building your brand’s reputation.
LinkedIn is also the network where you can most effectively target your audience for your paid ads as you can target based on the industry in which they operate, companies, positions, years of work experience, and a number of other parameters.
LinkedIn provides a truly diverse range of advertising options ranging from sponsored posts, through paid InMail campaigns, text, and video ads, to an option called LinkedIn Elevate, which encourages your employees to share quality and relevant content. This further increases the impact of the campaign and increases the credibility of the brand.
Facebook: Still One of the Cheapest Promotion Channels
If you don’t yet have a business page on this social network, it’s about time to create it because it’s one of the most effective ways to maintain contact with the audience, as well as the audience with you.
In addition, Facebook advertising is still one of the cheapest options for digital marketing, as you can reach several thousand people at a cost of one dollar per day, and by targeting profiles based on location, demographic data, and interests.
Depending on the situation, you can also choose the goal you want to achieve by advertising on Facebook. That can be:
- more traffic to your website and winning more leads
- more likes, shares, comments, and other types of engagement for a given post
- installing promoted mobile and desktop applications
- attracting more visitors to your eStore or event
One of the free opportunities for promotion is to create a Facebook group that will deal with topics from your industry, and in which you’ll moderate and have the opportunity to answer user questions and thus present yourself as an expert in your business. This will quickly and easily qualify your business for the title of a brand that’s worth trusting.
Facebook Live and Facebook Story are some other forms of free promotion through the organization of webinars, sharing business advice, educational material, personal and professional experiences, and much more.
The creation of video content has become so popular that it stands out as a separate form of marketing, which includes the adoption of a separate marketing strategy.
What makes your video so successful? Initially – the speed of viewing. For a few years now, statistics show that more than 80 % of people would rather watch a video on the Internet than read a text. That’s because watching is faster and more efficient than reading.
According to surveys, more than 50 % of users actually expect video content from brands they follow or support. In contrast, only 18 % of them expect blog articles.
In addition, it’s stressed that:
- 90 % of customers make the decision to buy online after watching a video presentation of the product
- the conversion rate on the sales page can get increased by 80 % thanks to video
- the very mention of the word video in the title of the email increases the review rate by 19 %
Therefore, we suggest that you make sure to include video content in your marketing strategy for 2020.
You can use video content for:
- description of your brand/application/service (explainer video)
- demo display
- video tutorials
- video testimonials of previous customers/users
- live broadcast from conferences and other events
- answer frequently asked questions (e.g. for Facebook Live)
- 360-degree display
- augmented or virtual reality images
You can create a video by simply merging photos, adding specific text, and music but you can also take more complex shots. One of the more useful tools is VideoKit. It combines a selection of visual and audio material to your needs.
You may also find the new Chrome extension called Recast Studio interesting, which will help you easily turn textual content, such as a blog article, into a video.
By audio marketing, I am thinking mainly of podcasts, which have recently gained great popularity and become one of the important promotion tools. Like other forms of content, a podcast isn’t a channel you’ll use for direct advertising, but it’s an extremely important form of content marketing.
As an audio format that’s published online in daily/weekly/monthly episodes, the podcast is an ideal solution to share useful advice. It’s also a great way to craft secrets, or interviews with successful colleagues with your audience through original content and to build your business. In this way, you create a reputation and increase loyal followers (listeners), who can turn into your products’ most loyal customers and, finally, loyal users of your services.
Improved Google Ads and Personalized Advertising
Google is still the most popular Internet search engine, and Google ads continue to be a trendy way to promote online search. By changing its name from Google AdWords to Google Ads during 2018, Google has decided to update and simplify online advertising and the creation of PPC campaigns within channels such as online search, YouTube, maps, mobile applications, and many others.
The offer of Google service, among other things, now includes:
- smart campaigns for small and medium-sized enterprises
- ads for online sales
- local campaigns
- customizable text ads
In this way, different companies can reach a larger number of potential customers, users, and clients faster and easier, and that’s certainly the goal of PPC advertising. Given the growing success of Google’s algorithm in machine learning, further growth in Google Ads campaigns’ popularity has occurred over the past year with an increasing degree of personalization.
Micro-Moments in User Behavior
Micro-moments are closely related to advertising on Google. Namely, they refer to users’ behavior in cases of making immediate decisions and occur when answering questions such as: what will I eat for lunch, which restaurant to go to, what to buy as a gift, where to repair the car, etc.
At such times, Google responds to paid ads placed by:
- where needed
- when needed
- in front of those who need it the most at that moment
It isn’t a novelty, of course, but considering the increasingly frequent mobile search (where such ads are most often placed), we point out that this has become an increasingly used way of advertising, and this trend continued in 2020.
Each micro-moment leads to a better insight into users’ behavior on the Internet and their interaction with the content. This is why the importance of analytics review for your website is emphasized. It also points to the growing importance of personalized online advertising.
Since Google’s advertising, there has been targeted ad placement based on users’ personal preferences and the knowledge that Google has gained based on search history, current location, interests, habits, daily online behavior, and many other parameters.
How many times have you, for example, been searching for hotels for your next trip, and then, in the next few days, ads for booking platforms appeared on almost every website about the hotels you were interested in?
It isn’t rocket science. It’s the result of Google’s insight into your behavior on the Internet with the goal of giving each user what they are most likely to be interested in, just when they need it. The result of such a tactic is usually an increased number of customers or users.
That’s why we recommend that you, if you haven’t already done so, immediately do a thorough research of the behavior, habits, and needs of people from your target group. In that way, you’ll reach them much more straightforward and create personalized ads with much more success, which will be in trend during the next year as well.
The so-called persona creation can help you with that. These are fictitious people whose profiles you’ll create yourself based on research about the target group, and who’ll represent your ideal customer or precisely imagined user of your services. Personas also help you segment your target group more clearly. And when you do that, it will be more apparent to you how to approach them on a much more personal level and present them with the right offer at the right time.
We believe that currently, there’s no better and more efficient way to promote your business than digital marketing. In 2021, as we can see, some of the trends will continue to be current, while some new techniques will take precedence over others – primarily in audio and video content, email campaigns, and personalized ads.
As your digital advertising campaign brings you more website traffic, more followers, and increased user activity on social media, you can be confident that your marketing strategy has borne fruit.