As we approach the halfway mark in 2017, we wanted to look at the top marketing trends to keep an eye on for the rest of the year and beyond.
1. Dark social and proper attribution
Our Dark Social 101 guide dug into what dark social is and what to do about it. Despite its sinister sounding name, it’s simply unattributed traffic that can obscure the true results of your content’s traffic and shares.
As digital marketers, our success hinges on not just creating wins for clients, but also proving our results. Alexis C. Madrigal, who coined the term, estimated that up to 70 percent of social referral traffic to The Atlantic website was dark social.
Hootsuite explains that this traffic often occurs from some of our most ubiquitous digital channels, including native apps such as Facebook, email, messaging apps, and secure browsing. The article also invites marketers to dig into this dark social data to better understand how users are consuming and sharing content.
However, it is not just enough to understand dark social; you must also use the right tactics to mitigate it as much as possible. Bonfire recommends incorporating unique UTM codes on all social content, increase social share button use, and ensure the correct tracking pixels are installed on your website.
2. How to incorporate voice search into your SEO strategy
Voice search is becoming a fully realized component of SEO. No longer should your optimization or SEO strategy involve just the written word.
According to a recent Yoast article, voice assistant use is on the rise from 30 percent in 2013 to 65 percent in 2015. In fact, 20 percent of Android devices are voice activated.
One recommendation from Yoast is to use “full, natural language” and focus on conversational speech. This often revolves around developing content to answer user questions. One needs to only look at ads for products such as Amazon Echo. The question-and-answer between user and voice assistant in these ads applies directly to your content as well.
Understand what type of long-tail keyword questions users may ask and optimize your content accordingly. Prepare your SEO strategy by incorporating long-tail conversational keywords and ensure your pages are mobile friendly.
3. Social video continues to rise
Social video has been consistently growing in strength, helping to break through the noise of social news feeds. Brands have incorporated video not just into their organic social media strategies, but also increased its use in paid social strategies.
According to the Digital in 2017 report by We Are Social, 82 percent of all consumer traffic will be video by 2020. With this in mind, it’s estimated that 70 percent of advertisers will incorporate social video.
As consumption increases, the way video is presented on social platforms is changing as well. Recently, Facebook announced that it will leave sound on in videos by default, reversing the trend of developing video with silence assumed.
4. Predicting the tipping point for marketing forecasting
The need to properly forecast marketing outcomes is nothing new, but 2017 is a crucial time for incorporating predictive analytics into your marketing strategy. MarTech Advisor wrote that “due to the rise of predictive engines, 2017 is the year when data will become more intelligent, more useable, and more relevant than ever.”
The opportunities for agencies and brands incorporating predictive analytics is both increased effectiveness and the ability to better understand your customer base. A 2016 study by the Aberdeen Group found that predictive analytics users saw customer lifetime value double over non-users, as well as better results in employee engagement, customer effort, and average profit margin per customer.
5. The complex rise in television viewing on YouTube
YouTube should not be seen solely as an alternative or challenger to television. More and more, YouTube is working with television as it carves out its place in the home. According to Think with Google, YouTube now accounts for over half of the time people spend watching online video on television.
YouTube viewing habits incorporate several interesting statistics, including that 92 percent of YouTube viewers watch the platform on their mobile device at home and that television content viewed on YouTube is up 230% over the past four years.
Google’s main point is that it is not just about YouTube replacing television, it is much more nuanced than that. Marketers must understand how people engage with YouTube, both in terms of its native content as well as its impacts on enhancing the multiscreen viewing experience.
Whether it is predicting the results of your marketing campaign or understanding consumption behavior, digital marketing continues to evolve at a breakneck pace. Understanding the trends of 2017 will help keep your marketing efforts ahead of the game and prevent you from falling behind with clients or competitors.
- Digital Marketing: A Beginner’s Guide to Dark Social: Unique UTM codes for all digital content is crucial to properly attributing marketing efforts and helping to mitigate dark social. This post walks you through implementing UTM tracking for your marketing channels.
- 10 Quick Tips for Creating Compelling Videos for Social Media: The rise of social video has created an increased need for more video content. Hootsuite’s guide outlines 10 tips to help in the content development process.
- The Dark Side of Mobile Sharing: RadiumOne’s guide to dark social aims to improve marketers understanding of proper attribution and how to combat dark social to improve marketing ROI.