The Top 6 Marketing Trends For 2018

For regional brands and businesses with limited resources in a congested and competitive landscape such as Hudson County, marketing today can be an overwhelming and often confusing subject which is made even more so by the massive changes we see in the growing and mobile forward audience moving into the region and tech innovations which offer increasingly specific targeting capabilities. The question we hear often in regard to strategy pertains to channel selection and measurement beyond clicks and traffic. The truth is, there’s not one solution that works for all organizations and their respective goals. Careful observation and analysis of performance along with data will go a long way toward determining ROI to create sustainable and effective marketing plans.

2018 is going to be another exciting year for new and innovative ways to reach consumers and increase brand awareness. We’ve done all the research and chosen the top 6 of what we believe to be the most effective and relevant trends for the coming year in Hudson County to engage your audiences and grow your business.

1. Video Marketing

It’s no secret we’re big fans of video and have been since 2010. Over the past 7 years, we’ve seen a steady rise in its popularity and from our perspective it remains the most influential form of digital content for businesses today and if done right, can have a very positive impact on your bottom line. As our attention spans decrease, marketers are heavily relying more and more on creating video content to boost search engine rankings, increase engagement and website traffic rates.

According to a recent report, Mobile video ad spend will grow 49% to roughly $18 billion in 2018, while non-mobile video ad spend is expected to fall 1.5% to $15 billion. For the first time, we can expect to see a decline of video consumption on laptops — while video views on phones and tablets are expected to grow by 25%. The average viewer is expected to watch 36 minutes of online video per day on a mobile device, as opposed to half as much — roughly 19 minutes — on a computer.

2. Targeted Ads

We love options. Who doesn’t? It makes sense to approach digital marketing with the same mindset. Audiences already have minimal attention spans and get served so many, often irrelevant, one size fits all, ads on a daily basis, so why not offer different versions to different audiences to appeal to different tastes? For example, try switching up the creative, messaging or goals in mind. This approach will help you better understand which ads are performing best. Careful tracking and analysis provide valuable insight into your audience’s tastes and preferences to be integrated into a sustainable digital plan.

3. Influencers

Influencer marketing is one of the newer entrants onto the list and one of the fastest growing. Typically, influencers have been celebrities who are compensated to promote products and services to their social media followers. When it comes to social influencing, to be considered a celebrity, one has to have over 1 million followers. People with 500k–1 million followers and 100k–500k followers fall into the macro influencer and middle influencer categories, respectively. Micro influencers are generally average folks who have between 1k–100k followers and innovative regional brands are connecting with these individuals because they’re more relatable and relevant to the community. Studies today suggest that 82% of consumers are highly likely to explore a recommendation made by a micro-influencer.

4. Generation Z

Entrepreneurial, tech-savvy, driven by cause and mobile-minded, Generation Z also known as the iGeneration, Post-Millennials, or the Homeland Generation are people who were born in the late 1990s to mid-2000s. Building relationships with this new market can have a profound long-term impact on your business as they prepare to enter the workforce and become more active consumers. Appeal to their global outlook, desire to change the world and sense of edge and you have the potential to connect with an influential audience.

5. LinkedIn

LinkedIn, often overlooked in the sexy world of the newer platforms like Instagram and Snapchat, continues to offer a high quality and evolving channel for B2B marketers. This strategy pertains to a large and growing sector of Hudson County and deserves a dedicated approach.

Over 90% of B2B marketers say LinkedIn is the most effective platform for lead generation. If you’re in the market for new customers, LinkedIn should be the first place to look in 2018. Connecting with a potential client on LinkedIn increases the chances of them buying from you by 50%.

6. Interactivity

Over the past year, we’ve had a lot of fun exploring interactive e-marketing and planning for 2018. Email marketing offers a low or no cost, trackable, scalable channel that’s yours to grow, so why not explore how to engage your audiences with new and different content? It’s time to take a serious look at email, if you’ve been sending the same emails repeatedly, you can’t expect to get different results. Interactive emails will improve engagement with your subscribers and provide a wide spectrum of analytics which you can build on. Why not try enhancing your plan with strong design and minimal copy, compelling calls to action, real-time surveys, videos or animation?

Moving into 2018 it’s clear that new approaches are required to stay competitive as the pace of life increases due to the abundance of technological innovations and maturing of digital marketing. These are just some of the ideas and trends driving engagement today, but the only way to know if they’re right for you is to just do it and pay close attention to what happens next!

Good luck!