We have put together just a few of the top marketing trends that you should definitely consider using in 2018. As an agency our focus has become targeted around three key areas:

  • User Experience
  • Paid Advertising
  • Multi-media rich content

It’s not just us! The entire industry is increasingly aware of how important the user journey is over SEO, click rates and the length of the content you serve to your audience. Why? Because your website has to deliver on so many levels these days. It has to be:

  • super quick
  • super responsive
  • super user friendly and easy to navigate

You also have to offer a second to none service for your customers. Because you wont then amazon will!

So here are a few areas where we are getting slicker and quicker and we recommend you do exactly the same!

1) Video Marketing

2017 saw the use of video marketing continue to rise and now we are in 2018 it is one of the main trends being used in marketing campaigns. This is especially big on social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. People watch more video than any other content on the web! 

  • Viewers watch a billion hours of video each day on YouTube

  • Facebook users consume over 8 billion videos every day

  • 82% of Twitter’s audience views video content

There are so many video formats to choose from, including, 360 degree videos, live streams, animated, presentation style, and short clips to use on Facebook. It is important to remember no-one is perfect on their first go, so whether it takes 1 take or 10 takes you will have the perfect video for publication with practice. There are multiple tools but two of our top recommendations for getting started are PowerPoint for sizing up those videos for Facebook and layering in animations and transitions between slides. The second is Recastly for adding a top and bottom to videos and layering on subtitles.

Subtitles are essential as 75% of people do not listen to videos they read them with the sound turned off. 

2) Chatbots

You might find that waiting for customer service can be a nightmare, but like most things in the marketing world, there is a solution that may help – Chatbots. They have been around for a long time, but recently they have seen massive AI improvements and more and more brands are starting to use them. Chatbots are designed so customers can receive immediate responses to basic questions. It is essentially a Q & A section on your website that is instantly available to customers. 

Not only can you use chatbots throughout your website but you can also use them on messaging services such as Facebook messenger. For most businesses it can be difficult to have someone available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, which is why creating a chatbot might just be the solution to enhanced user engagement. So, how exactly does this help? Well, someone sees a post on your Facebook wall, they click on the “message” button and they are directed to a conversation with your company. Your chatbot will then ask questions with the different replies possible. As long as your enquirer has followed the instructions then this could then lead to an email conversation or a phone call.

It has possibilities as a marketing tool though some still view this approach as wooden and sales orientated and it is widely speculated that they will come to the fore in the next two years as AI advances. A careful marriage between quality marketing with a sprinkling of sales is essential for inbound marketing so use the technology sparingly and get your approach finely honed so it impresses an audience eager for more knowledge and direction.

3) Paid Advertising on Social Media

The days of organic reach providing steady traffic and engagement on social media are pretty much non-existent now. If you are using social media platforms in your marketing campaign then you need to be using paid advertising in order to create a higher engagement rate. There are many different ways you can do this, two of the easiest ways are boosting posts and ads.

So how do you boost a post on Facebook? Well, once you have published your post you simply click the “Boost Post” button and it allows you to quickly create the Ad. Boosting a post is designed to help you get more likes, shares and comments on the post that you have created. Features include, targeting, placements, customisable budgets and scheduling. Using boosted posts will allow you to quickly but effectively get your posts in front of a desired audience, as a digital marketing agency we highly recommend you look into the different things you can do on Facebook.

The best way to boost is by going into your Ad account and managing them there. Why? Because the boost button is limited and you can throw money at posts and lose a ton by not keeping track of engagement. The Ad account helps you refine your targeting even further and there is so much functionality designed to get your Ads in front of the right people that it would be insane not to utilise it.

Another way to get your posts in front of more people and gain attraction is through ads. You can create ads on most platforms including, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, it is important that you research how to do them on each platform because it won’t be the same process for each one! Just like boosting a post, when you create an Ad you can choose your budget, audience, location and design layout.

Of course dont forget Google. When it comes to paid they were there first and they know what they are doing. PLAs is a core focus for SEO Traffic Lab because we can guarantee clients return and throw a lot of traffic at those product pages which is great for testing and refining the user experience.

4) Interactive Content

When most people hear the words “content marketing” they normally assume it is a blog that you find on the website, however, in 2018 content marketing is a lot more than that. It is still important to have static content such as blog posts and articles but if you are wanting to take your strategy to the next level then you need to be including interactive content into your campaigns. So, now you are probably thinking, what is classed as interactive content? Well, we have gathered a few different examples that you can use within your business.

Polls and surveys are perfect for interacting with your audience, not only do they engage with users but they gather valuable insights on how users feel about specific issues or situations. When creating your poll or survey, make sure it is on an interesting topic and includes call to actions to help persuade them to take part for you.

Another type of interactive content you can try are quizzes. There are many software’s out there that allow you to create quizzes and then publish them onto your social media platforms or website. Even though it might take you a little longer to create the quiz compared to a standard social post, it will definitely be worth it when you see the results it has created.

Interactive posts that pose questions and videos that engage with the audience are quick and easy ways to interact with a receptive audience. One of the hardest to accomplish are interactive website pages that form cornerstone pieces of content. You put in buttons, sliders, different pathways through the content and you create a journey for the reader. It takes more time and more effort but this is the level where trending content is created. People want more so take a browse of what you read and interact with and start creating something similar.

5) GDPR

In April 2016 the GDPR was approved by the EU parliament, GDPR stands for the General Data Protection Regulation. The big question is, do you know everything you need to know? Technically not a marketing method but it will have a huge impact on marketing so it is in our top five for 2018. 

In case you are not aware, the GDPR gives EU citizens more control over their personal data, so every time a company wants information from a consumer they will need explicit consent from the individual. The data can include, their location, name and email address, not only do you need permission but the company also has to state what data they plan on collecting and how they are going to be using it.

It is important to remember that even if your business isn’t in the EU, the GDPR is applicable to any company that collects data on any EU citizen.

The GDPR will be enforced on the 25th May 2018, so you need to make sure your company is prepared before this date. If your business doesn’t follow these rules you will be faced with an EU fine of up to 4% of your global annual turnover.

So, now we have discussed several trends that will either be coming into action or getting considerably bigger in 2018, it is your turn. If you want to have a successful marketing campaign for your business then you need to be considering making these trends a part of your business.

Not sure where to start? Well, why not email a member of our team at hello@seotrafficlab.com.  We are here to advise and guide you in the best practices for your business.