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Marketing trends are constantly evolving due to changes in technology and consumer taste. Marketing teams need to keep up with these fast-paced changes in order to stay ahead of competitors. Each year, there are significant marketing trends that your team should be aware of. In this guide, you’ll learn why it’s important to stay on top of marketing trends and some of the most notable ones you’ll see in 2020.

Why Is It Important to Be Aware of Marketing Trends?

It’s important to be aware of marketing trends, so your marketing team can learn new marketing strategies to use. Though one kind of strategy may have worked for your business for a while, it’s important to evolve or change your efforts to keep up with consumer tastes. Marketing trends can help you improve your business in the following ways:

  • Stay updated on the ways consumers shop.
  • Learn changes in consumers’ priorities and behaviors.
  • Create strategies to stay ahead of competitors.
  • Stay relevant with your target audience.
  • Save money by appropriately responding to changes in the market.

Types of Marketing Trends in 2020

Marketing trends are frequently changing, so it’s important to know which ones are the most prevalent in 2020. By implementing necessary changes based on marketing trends, you can show consumers your company is innovative and relevant. Here are the most popular current marketing trends that can help your company find success in 2020:

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming an integral part of marketing strategies and the shopping experience. Companies are using AI to analyze consumer behaviors and search patterns. They also use data from social media and blog posts to learn more about the ways consumers are finding their products and services.

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AI is also used by companies for content creation, email personalization, transactions, customer support, and product recommendations. These programs can learn about customers’ preferences and market certain products or services based on them.

Here are two different types of AI companies are using:

  • Programmatic advertising: This is when marketers use AI to automatically buy ads geared toward their target audiences. Bidding happens in real-time and is based on the actions of a website visitor. For example, if they click on a webpage, advertisers instantly bid for the right to display their ad, and then the ad is delivered to the visitor. Then, hopefully, the visitor clicks on the ad and makes a purchase.
  • Chatbots: These are a new development in customer support. Chatbots are supported by AI to answer customers’ questions in real-time. They use natural language processing to help customers with frequently asked questions. If the chatbot is unable to figure out a solution, they might connect the customer with a live support agent. Companies can benefit from chatbots because they are instant and can answer customers’ questions any hour of the day.

Conversational Marketing

Instead of traditional marketing that takes a one-to-many approach, marketers are becoming more conversational with their audience. According to Business 2 Community, 82% of consumers want an immediate response from companies when they have a question. That why chatbots and virtual customer support teams are becoming more popular. After talking to a representative, customers often receive a feedback prompt. This is a simple and quick way brands can get instant feedback about their customer support services.

Brands are also more likely to interact with their customers on social media. For example, if someone comments on a brand’s post, their social media team may directly respond. This is a great way for brands to create a positive reputation by showing they value their customers.

Video Marketing

According to HubSpot, 85% of companies use video as a marketing tool. By incorporating video into your marketing strategy, you can keep up with the rest of the market. Video marketing is a great way to teach people about your products and services. It is more dimensional than content marketing, and as more platforms such as Facebook become better at supporting video, this form of marketing is likely to increase in prevalence.

Users can easily watch videos on their mobile devices. When creating a video, keep in mind that it is likely to be viewed on a small screen. Make sure things like text and logos are easy to read on any device. Also, make sure to provide captions for your videos since many people may not have their phone sound on. It is also helpful for users who have impaired hearing.

Influencer Marketing

Though influencer marketing has been around for a couple of years now, it can still be useful for many businesses. This kind of marketing uses word-of-mouth tactics to drive product and service sales. Brands typically partner with someone who has many social media followers and compensates this person to feature the brand on their social media feed. Influencer marketing works because people tend to view this as more authentic than traditional brand advertising. In fact, Single Grain says that 63% of consumers trust influencers’ opinions about products more than what the actual brand says about itself.

Personalization

It’s become more important for brands to personalize their messaging to customers. In fact, Accenture found that 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands that provide them with relevant offers and recommendations. Their data also says that 83% of consumers are willing to share their personal data for a more personalized shopping experience. These findings show that it is important for your marketing team to focus on messaging that is tailored to each person you reach out to. You can do this through personalized emails, advertisements, products, services, and content.

Voice Search

Thanks to smart speakers such as Alexa and Google Home, as well as mobile search assistants like Siri, voice search is becoming more popular in 2020. According to ComScore, this year, 50% of searches are expected to be voice searches. Brands are figuring out ways to incorporate voice search into their marketing efforts. For instance, they are using voice search to enable people to make purchases or find out how much something costs.

Social Media Stories

Stories are a way users can temporarily share a photo, video, or other content for a set period of time. Brands have followed suit and now create stories of their own. For example, Instagram and Snapchat allow brands to create advertisements that play when users switch between their friends’ stories. These ads have become more interactive, allowing users to click on them to learn more about a brand’s products and services.

Content Marketing

As search engine optimization (SEO) becomes more important, content marketing will continue to be useful for brands. When writing content with SEO in mind, your brand may be more likely to show up higher on search engine results pages (SERP). Write your content using natural language and keywords to optimize it. Also, include both internal and external links throughout your online content. When linking to external sources, make sure they are factual and reputable.

Content marketing is also a great way to show consumers that your business is a thought leader in your industry. Write about topics that consumers are likely to be interested in. For example, if customers are frequently asking the same questions, write a blog post that addresses some of these topics. Use research to back up your claims and show that your brand is trustworthy. Throughout your content, you can write about your products and services. Ideally, write about them in an organic way so the content is more informative rather than a long-form sales pitch.

Information Protection

As more information is shared online, consumers are becoming increasingly concerned about their privacy. A survey by IBM’s Institute for Business Value found that 62% of consumers would consider one brand over another if it had better privacy and security. Your company should have safety measures in place to keep your customer’s information safe.

Companies are using encryption, stronger user passwords, secure networks, and other safeguards to keep things like personal data and financial information secure from hackers. Communicate what safety measures your team is taking so customers feel at ease when using your services. Let them know that their privacy is your company’s top priority.

Image via Flickr by stockcatalog

Focusing on Generation Z

As Generation Z gets older, more people from this generation are entering the workforce and have more expendable income. Though other generations are still important to market to, Generation Z should be one of your top focuses in 2020. Have your marketing team do some consumer research on this generation to learn what kind of marketing works best for them and which of your products or services may be useful for them.

According to Hootsuite, Generation Z values things such as individuality, online privacy, diversity, and equality. They often make purchasing decisions based on what they value and are more likely to trust the opinions of their family and friends more than anyone else. When creating your marketing, think about what your brand stands for and how you can convey this through your messaging.

A report by Global Web Index also found that Generation Z prefers mobile devices to laptops or PCs. Marketers can use this information about Generation Z to influence their marketing efforts. Focus on optimizing your website and shopping experience for a mobile device.

Shoppable Social Media Posts

More people are shopping online than ever before. Brands are keeping up with this trend by offering e-commerce options for their customers. Social media companies are helping many of these brands by releasing more convenient online shopping features.

For example, last year, Instagram released Instagram Checkout, which allows users to complete purchases through the Instagram app. Brands can create shopping posts that users can click on to go to the product page. There, they can choose what product they want and enter their name, email, billing information, and shipping information. Instagram also gives users in-app notifications about their shipments and deliveries. This reduces the risk of users giving up on a purchase due to having to leave the app. Everything is streamlined within Instagram, making online shopping even more convenient.

Interactive Content

Capture people’s interest with interactive content. Rather than solely using text-based messaging, create content that is more engaging for users. Here are some types of interactive content brands are using in 2020:

  • Quizzes and polls: Along with people finding these fun to take, your business can learn more about consumers based on their answers.
  • Virtual reality (VR): Brands are using VR to create lifelike scenes of their stores or products. For example, Facebook 360 enables brands to create immersive content for users.
  • Augmented reality (AR): Snapchat started the trend with its filters and lenses. Brands caught on and are using the platform to create branded lenses, filters, and games using this AR technology.
  • Live-streaming video: Social media platforms such as Facebook and YouTube offer live-streaming video services. Brands can connect with their audience in real-time and respond to users’ questions and comments in their videos. This helps brands directly connect and engage with consumers.

Your marketing efforts should always continue to evolve in order to keep up with consumer demand and behaviors. Take time to learn about each of these trends and research how your target audience is likely to interact with them. By implementing some of these 2020 marketing trends, your company can stay ahead of competitors this year.

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