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As businesses embark upon a new year, preparation is a fundamental factor in surviving against fierce competition. Becoming leaders of change (rather than followers) will help brands gain relevance and improve customer retention. It is important for businesses to stay on top of trends, as it will help them develop stronger business strategies, attract new prospects, and satisfy existing clients. Check out our marketing predictions for 2019:
1. 5G technology will expand the Internet of Things (IoT) and encourage innovation within different industries. It will provide faster connectivity for websites and HD films, which will evolve the expectations of desktop and smartphone users. As 5G will offer data transfer speeds of 10GBps, reduce latency and short lag time, servers will be able to respond faster to requests. It will also create new opportunities for businesses to be more resilient and competitive, as it will improve digital communications, the productivity of remote staff, and profits. Further revolutionising software services, remote surgery, and unlocking rendering capacities for virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and gaming.
2. Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities will provide insights into customer journeys and behaviours, to enable brands to create personalised experiences for each online visitor. Facebook is already using AI to recreate 3D and virtual environments of their users' memories (photos and videos). This increases customer loyalty as brands can demonstrate that they are invested in connecting with their audience on a deeper and emotional level. Brands can also take advantage of machine learning to make product and user development seamless, as a result, reducing the amount of time required to manually test a strategy, process or experience.
3. Voice Search Optimisation will require businesses to rethink their SEO and content strategies by including tagged voice keywords to enhance their customer journeys on search engines or social platforms. With the growing popularity and convenience of voice-activated assistants, (e.g. Google Home, Amazon Alexa and Apple’s Siri) brands must integrate this technology to improve their brand-customer relationship across all digital platforms.
4. Marketing Automation Software will enable businesses to plan and schedule content to post automatically on their various digital channels. This will continue to provide convenience, personalisation and faster delivery for businesses seeking digital solutions to improve their productivity. Paired with the power of AI–campaigns will be tested dynamically and adjusted to provide the best results.
5. Chatbots will become more intelligent and human-like, as a result, the line between human communication and computer learning will become blurred. With natural language processing (NLP) technology advancements, chatbots will enhance conversational user experiences, by collecting data to respond in full sentences to complex customer problems. Chatbots have the potential to replace apps, customer service teams and service ticketing systems, to improve their engagement, marketing efforts and productivity.
6. Video content will continue to act as a driving force for businesses to appeal to increase brand awareness and customer engagement. Brands must utilise social media features such as IGTV and live video streaming (Facebook, Linkedin and YouTube) to stand out from their competitors. As well as, create authentic content because “80% of consumers indicate that authenticity influences their decision to support a product or brand” (according to Stackla). In addition to video becoming more widely distributed, it will likely also become more decentralised, as users abandon commercial platforms which seek to monetise user content and control its’ distribution. Instead, users will transition towards unregulated, non-monetised content and platforms.
7. Influencer Marketing will move away from celebrity endorsements and a select few authoritative influencers to the masses. With the ‘blackfishing scandal’ (makeup controversy) in 2018 and a backlash against non-contextual product promotion, consumers will pressure brands to make a conscious effort to endorse ethical and authentic influencers or face the consequence of jeopardising their reputation. Referral Marketing will be the hot trend for 2019, as consumers will rely on the relationships (family and friends) they trust for credible product recommendations and reviews.
8. Social CEOs are the latest trend, forcing brand leaders to step away from their desks–interact with their audience online to provide insights into the people behind their products and services. As Millennials (Gen X & Y) and Generation Z (iGen) crave authenticity and social justice in every brand interaction; from their careers to transactions, they will continue to rally behind brands that make a positive difference to the world or challenge the status quo of consumerism.
We work with brands to develop their marketing strategies, brand communications and products to help them remain relevant, agile and competitive in their market. If you’re struggling with business obstacles, or if you are looking to step up your game and scale, we’re ready to accept your challenge and join your team. Challenge us for free by contacting us: firstname.lastname@example.org or call us @ +447739313439