Key Digital Marketing Trends for 2017

With January drawing to a close, you’ve probably settled back into the working year and its business as usual. But wait- before you get too comfortable with the status quo, now is the time to become forward-thinking with your digital marketing efforts to stay one step ahead of your competitors. Staying at the forefront of new technologies is easier said than done, so we’ve done some of the leg work and rounded up the top strategies you ought to be investing in. Far too many juicy insights for just 1 article, this forms part of a three part blog series, which handpicks emerging trends that go beyond merely the ‘buzz’ words or passing fads.

Customer Experience

Certainly not a new concept, prioritising the customer experience is becoming increasingly unavoidable for businesses seeking true, uncapped success. It is paramount to know your customer inside and out by gathering insights, understanding their motivation and anticipating their needs. Appeasing savvy, globally-minded consumers is harder than ever, and your product and service delivery needs to be happening on consumers’ preferred platforms, harnessing user-friendly formats, and generally facilitating the buyer journey at every turn. Having a great product/service is simply not enough if your delivery and presentation doesn’t fulfil consumer expectations. So what are consumer expectations? It goes beyond a modern, functional website. Regardless of audience traits, consumers want greater responsiveness. In an environment in which they are bombarded with competing messages and brands, visibility and brand ‘touch points’ become crucial. The more platforms customers can initiate contact and engage with you, the better, and will build relevancy and trust in their eyes toward a greater likelihood of purchase behaviour.

For instance, a neglected or completely lacking social media profile will raise suspicions. Alternatively, a monitored Facebook page with two-way exchanges between company and customer will exude professionalism. A website checkout process with pre-populated data for return customers, a live chat feature for immediate customer service, and value-adds to trump price, all go a long way in eliminating consumer doubt and awarding you the winning edge over your competitors. Have a think about what dazzles you in your own transactions as a customer and ensure that your own business meets or exceeds them!

Personalisation

Reinforcing the notion of customer experience at the heart of marketing decisions is the demand for individuality and personalisation in modern consumer habits. Customisation is the order of the day, but many businesses haven’t quite got the memo or simply unsure how to tackle it in common practice. Does your business use visitor demographics to tailor advertising material to your audience? Highly relevant ads engineered for a corresponding audience will outperform generic ads every single time. Marketing personalisation frequently occurs at a more macro-level through demographic targeting- ie. content differentiated for Teens or over 50’s. However, personalisation should also be undertaken on a more intimate level, which is explored well through email database marketing methods. For example, big-name retailers have harnessed psychology and emotion by creating ‘we miss you’ emails paired with incentives, to re-engage cold leads to great effect.

Of course you can’t please everyone individually and attempting to personalise on an aggregate level would be incredibly time-consuming and a resource drain, relative to the size of your customer-base. Streamlining your personalisation efforts is a strategy all businesses should be aspiring to. Investing in a downloadable app is one such example and an ideal way to create a personalised space for consumers, as it harnesses automation technology for maximum reach and minimum effort. At the end of the day, the aim is to balance personalisation as tactically as possible to ensure all customers feel heard, whilst identifying priority, high-value customers to capitalise fully on its potential to forge brand ambassadors.

Remember to check back for next week’s article on what other tactics need to be on your radar in 2017.

To learn more about how to apply these methods specifically to your own business and soar above your competition, send us an email or give us a call on 1300 766 665 for a no-obligation discussion.

Jasmine Batra
Jasmine Batra
Jasmine Batra is one of Australia’s most respected Digital Marketing Strategists and the co-founder and CEO of Arrow Digital. She draws from her practical experience on SEO, Social Media, Conversion Principles and Content marketing to drive business growth for her clients.

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