The temperature's dropped, October is nearly out, and we've already got our sights locked down further than November - We are gazing into 2019 and what next year is going to bring to us in the digital world.
2017 saw a huge boom in social media, with this year building on that even further. Augmented reality, video content and influencer marketing have all been on the up during 2018, so what might next year have in store?
Obviously we're pretty savvy here at Sprechen with all things digital, however psychic abilities are not within our many talents (yet). But based on current trends, technology developments and good old internet we can make a few predictions of what the New Year might bring your way in relation to digital marketing.
The Rise of Smart Speakers
Okay Google... What are the digital marketing trends we'll see next year? Alexa, write me a blog on 2019 DIgital Marketing Trends (I'm joking, I'm joking).
If you know what I'm talking about, maybe you've got one of these smart speakers in your home already and you would be with the majority - Consumers have gone mad for these recently, and they love them! Apparently once you have one of these voice-controlled assistants, you wouldn't want to live without them.
You can't scroll through your Facebook timeline or Instagram feed without sponsored ads popping up, suggesting things you might like to buy or brands you might like to follow, and it wouldn't be surprising if we started to see this happen with smart speakers too.
We are seeing more and more audio content being published online, so we can see Google, Amazon and Apple offer the possibility of publishing content to these devices.
So how does this tie in with digital marketing? We will likely see more and more online publications embrace voice and publish audio content to these devices.
Following on from this, Google's head of search says the next leap in technology will be advances in voice recognition. He believes that the very future of the internet relies on a better understanding of common language.
Search and information can't continue to grow without improvements in AI understanding language better. 'Speech to text' needs to be flawless, particularly in places like developing countries where literacy rates are lower or where you're not able to type a certain language even though you can speak it.
Understanding words like 'he', 'she' and 'it' in a sentence are only some of the reference problems that this technology needs to overcome. It also needs to recognise a range of words in relation to a specific query - Identifying synonymns and finding the relevant answer.
The future with this is that you will be able to actually have conversations with Google or Alexa, ask harder questions, and in more sophisticated ways.
Internet Will Catch Up To Television
Television has held the crown for the most watched but research suggests that internet will catch up with it's screen rival in terms of hours watched. As said above, more and more online content is video now, so time spent watching internet and TV will start to equal out.
Interestingly, this could mean that companies and brands will move their spend on adverts from television to online in the form of web video, social media and web advertising.
Live Video Will Keep Growing
We've seen a huge surge in modern streaming services . YouTube, Facebook and Instagram all have live video services which have increased in views year on year since 2016.
Don't underestimate the power of live video, it can do wonders for your brand and improving conversion rates.
For example, nearly three quarters of live viewers state that by watching a live stream of an event online, they are then more likely to purchase a ticket to see the band or attend the event themselves. It's like the ultimate product demonstration!
Live video is definitely growing and has great potential for digital marketing campaigns.
Video (And Video Ads) Will Keep Growing, Too
First it was text, then it was an image and now it's video content (including live). Traditional video content will continue to grow and it's an opportunity not to be missed - Studies have suggested that they expect video to account for a huge 85% of total internet traffic by 2019.
Just over half of internet users already use social media platforms to watch video, and that's only going to rise over the next year and beyond.
How many times have you had a Spotify playlist interrupted by an audio or video ad? How many funny cat videos have you watched with an advert popping up halfway through? Video ads are very much on the rise - Instagram in particular has seen a significant impression from video adverts and that's only likely to grow further.
If you're considering adding video to your digital marketing campaign for 2019, you could do this by creating video content for ads on YouTube and Instagram, or partnering with an influencer for paid product placement or endorsement in their social media videos.
Hey Chatbots, Are You a Normal Thing?
We fully expect to be seeing more of these next year. Whilst probably still a bit of a novelty to consumers at the moment, they will definitely start to become more widespread in 2019.
Chatbots will likely be the first port of call when someone wants to order a pizza, choose a mobile plan, or book a hotel room. Chatbots enable users to do all of this without the hassle of downloading a native app.
You might be thinking that consumers would hold a negative view of Chatbots - Surely they would rather just speak to a real person?
However, that doesn't seem to be the case. Data has shown that only 19% of 5,000 people surveyed had a negative perception of chatbots. Whilst only 33% had a positive view on them, 48% were indifferent so as long as the Chatbot is effective and can solve their issues, there's no reason why Chatbots can't work well.
Why not creep ahead of your competition in 2019 and develop a Chatbot now for your brand? Contact us and see how we could help.
CEO's Will Get Social
Obviously Sprechen's Steve is pretty good at the social stuff, but it's becoming more and more important for CEO's and other top dogs to have a social voice. Generally this has only really been seen via LinkedIn but as people try to stay on top of fake news and mistrust in the media deepens, CEO's will want to have a stronger and far reaching voice.
There are various effective and simple ways this can be done. Perhaps they could do some 'guest blogs' on the company website, or have an active Twitter acount that they regularly post personally written updates from.
Things like this helps to build trust between your audience and your company, boosting reputation, and creating a more personal relationship with current and prospective users.
This is also something we could help you to get going!
If any of these future digital trends have got you thinking about how you market your business, why not get in touch with us now and see how we can help bring your brand online and start 2019 ahead of the competition - Call us +44(0)1962 670 190 or email us firstname.lastname@example.org .
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