2a Swaines Ind. Estate

Essex, SS4 1RG

Mon - Fri 9.00 - 17.00

Weekends CLOSED

Fancy a Chin Wag?

0800 234 3440

UNTAPPED Digital Marketing Techniques of 2018.

The marketing game is always changing. 

New technologies for marketing are emerging on a consistent basis and 2018 looks like being an exciting year for digital marketing.

Some of the emerging trends include chatbots for use in social media settings, greater use of augmented reality, six-second “snackable video content” to provide a short story format for ads on websites and social media platforms, and use of privacy protection measures to ensure compliance with GDPR legislation.

One thing’s for sure, and that is that digital marketing is not standing still.

The adoption of virtual assistants, like Siri, has proved extremely popular with millennials in particular and this is leading to an increased requirement for voice optimised search.

Now that mobile devices feature so strongly for search, optimising websites for mobile content is something marketers should have already considered and implemented. But if your business is still lagging behind in this respect, it’s certainly a critically important task to consider for 2018.

Some of the top digital marketing trends for 2018 are highlighted below and marketers should pay careful consideration to the trends which are most likely to enhance their business opportunities and provide best returns on investment (ROI).

So we’ve put together a guide on untapped marketing ideas in 2018.

Chatbots for social media

Chatbot marketing is set to become a top digital trend for 2018 with enhancement of visitor engagement via personalised interactions.

How come?

The great advantage for businesses using chatbots for social marketing is that they allow a virtually unlimited amount of conversations to take place.

Check out Spotify, for example.

They’ve incorporated a chatbot into their Facebook chat, which is a brilliant way of decreasing response time and decreasing the labour intensive job to filter through every incoming chat.

 

 

What’s more, you can incorporate as many auto respond commands as you like, which creates a helpful and more realistic user experience.

One further advantage of using chatbots for social media is that any visitor journey can be personalised and automated, with special requests actioned and very real conversations taking place.

When Facebook initially introduced chat bots they were much-hyped, yet no-one really seemed to know what to do with them

But, it’s now anticipated that chatbots are likely to achieve acceptance as mainstream marketing tools in 2018 as customers have proved remarkably positive about the technology.

By the end of 2017, up to 38% of organisations were utilising chatbots and by the end of 2018 it’s predicted that this will have risen to 62%.

Juniper Research has predicted that chatbots will cut business costs by more than $8 million by the year 2022 and the developments in AI mean that a far more personalised experience will be offered.

Google it is a chatbot building platform which enables customers to tailor chatbots to meet their requirements so they can be used on any social media platform.

Some examples of chatbots in action include the personalised shopping chat bot experience from Tommy Hilfiger and customer help service from dating site Match.com.

It’s likely that chatbots will be linked to growing numbers of business applications in future and this will ensure even greater levels of customer satisfaction with your business.

So adopting this technology at the earliest opportunity will be beneficial for businesses that want to retain their competitive edge.

Chatbots create a streamlined and personalised customer experience for businesses of any nature and are vital for businesses embracing all the best 2018 technologies.

Exit detection for websites

Exit detection for websites is set to be another big marketing trend for 2018, offering visitors a survey to complete when it appears they are about to leave the business website.

The intention to exit websites is gauged via mouse movements or when visitors move the cursor to around 20px below the top of the page.

Although it has been suggested that exit pop ups risk annoying visitors, there are a number of advantages to their use.

What do these look like then?

They look something a little like this.

 

 

Gathering feedback or offering promotions on the consumer journey is important for marketers, so every pop up allows you to gain valuable information about the user experience and any potential problems with your site when they exit.

You can also try to divert the user to another page or attempt to get them to opt-in for a newsletter.

In actual fact, exit intent pop-ups can provide quite high response rates and will very often outperform other kinds of website techniques, such as gated downloadable content.

The information collected is extremely valuable for cutting bounce and exit rates.

Exit pop-ups can give you insights which can help increase rates of conversion.

The drawbacks of exit pop-ups can be that customers could find them intrusive, or they could appear at times when visitors were not actually considering leaving your site.

It has been highlighted that up to 70% of website visitors will abandon shopping trolleys and exit intent pop ups can help decrease this number.

 

The average website will lose more than 70% of users and these visitors never return. For every visitor leaving your site, the opportunity to create revenue is also lost.

Exit intent popups are reckoned to increase sales by 300% or more.

These popups are soft exit detector tools which can offer exiting visitors a variety of options, including newsletter sign-ups, discounts or money off deals to encourage purchases, or other promotions.

Using exit intent popups is reckoned to increase conversion levels by between 2% and 4%, so it’s well worth marketers considering every available exit intent opportunity.

There are many good reasons for marketers to consider adopting exit detection on their business website and it’s highly likely that detecting exits and conducting exit surveys will become more and more popular throughout 2018.

Check out our infographic to and decide for yourself if your site is lacking an important tool.

Website chat widgets

Adding website chat widgets is becoming increasingly popular for businesses, as they provide customer convenience and also increase business profits by cutting costs.

Why is this?

Traditional customer service support relies on phone services which can be costly in term of relative person per hour costs.

Live chat won’t cost much more than providing email support and estimates show that providing live chat services can be between 17% and 30% cheaper than providing phone support.

This is mainly due to the fact that trained call centre operators can handle around three or more chats at the same time.

One survey indicated that 44% of online purchasers say that having the opportunity to chat live with a customer service rep while conducting online buys is one of the most important facets offered by websites.

And, an additional survey highlighted that 63% of online consumers indicated they would return to a website which offered live chat facilities, with 38% of consumers saying that their online chat had persuaded them to actually make the purchase.

Live chat facilities help reduce bounce rates and mean that customer queries can be answered and shopping carts are not abandoned on such a frequent basis.

Live chat also provides great returns on investment (ROI) by increasing conversion rates by a minimum of 20% and providing typical ROI rates of 300% for sales teams.

It’s also estimated that customers who use live chat services are up to three times more likely to buy products than customers who don’t use chat services.

When it comes to customer satisfaction, research highlights that customer satisfaction rates are at the highest levels of 73% for chat services, compared to 61% for business email support and 44% for phone support.

Live chat services make it easy to provide customers with answers to product queries, help resolve problems more speedily and reassure customers that customer service is available when needed.

Indeed, consumer studies have shown that 90% of customers are confident that “live chat” services mean they can access help when needed.

One other important factor to consider when setting up live chat services is to hire staff with sales expertise, who can provide a warm and welcoming chat environment for customers and really enhance the shopping experience.

One important factor to take into account when setting up chat services is the times that customers actually use your site.

You should not assume that customers stick to a 9 am to 5 pm timescale, particularly if you serve overseas customers.

So, outsourcing your website chat services could be one solution to providing 24-hour online chat abilities.

Providing the best customer service is critical to business success, and online businesses really do need the instant access to sales support and customer service support that’s supplied by website chat widgets.

Influencer marketing

Influencer marketing was a marketing buzz word for 2017 and is set to really take off through 2018.

The use of influencer marketing is now far more mainstream and offers businesses a valuable method of distributing valuable content and raise brand awareness.

Weight Watchers announced that entertainer DJ Khaled would become their brand ambassador in 2018, and his 4,000,000 Twitter followers and 9,000,000 Instagram followers will surely make a big difference for the brand.

The growing popularity of influencer marketing is tapping into the social media boom and the era of smartphones. And fashion and lifestyle brands are seeing an extremely high ROI from this form of marketing, while it’s anticipated to cross over into other industries and prove just as popular.

In 2017, 63% of marketers increased their budgets to include influencer marketing and this is likely to show effects through 2018 and beyond.

It’s easily possible to monitor and track influencer campaigns to gain real insight into their success.

It’s important to consider the authenticity of any influencer being considered for brand marketing purposes, as sophisticated consumers can soon see right through a relationship that’s purely based on financial gain.

Indeed, authenticity is the real key to successful influencer marketing, so offering an influencer the opportunity to create the content is often important for this.

Consumers will often see right through content that’s created by businesses and brands as it’s not in the recognisable influencer style. This is particularly important for content targeted at the youth or niche markets and can be instrumental in the success of your influencer marketing campaigns.

Consumers only tend to rely on influencer recommendations that appear trustworthy and not too much of a sales pitch, so it will be important for influencers to speak in an authentic manner about the brand.

Influencers with high levels of engagement with their followers are an important fit for any business and once a successful influencer-brand relationship is in place it can often be the case that the influencer will continue to promote the brand. So, looking around for influencers that are the right fit for the business is critical to the entire process of engaging influencers.

Instagram is in the process of rolling out a shopping feature which will shorten the consumer buying journey even more and help enhance the reach of influencer marketing on the channel.

Through 2017, influencer marketing was valued as a $1bn industry and it’s forecast to hit $2bn by the year 2019.

It’s reckoned that 39% of marketers are currently planning to increase their budget to include influencer marketing.

Instagram had attracted over 25 million business users by November 2017, so it’s likely that social campaigns will continue to dominate the trend for influencer marketing.

Video content

2018 is set to be an exciting year for digital video internet trends.

The spend on internet adverts for 2017 was bigger than spend on TV adverts globally, with forecast expenditure amounting to £163bn for the year.

Research has highlighted that 43% of consumers would like to see more branded video content and almost 52% of professionals in the marketing field consider that video content gives the highest levels of ROI.

Annotated video content is likely to increase through 2018 and beyond, as up to 85% of Facebook daily video views are likely to take place without the use of sound.

Why don’t they turn sound on?

The reason sound is off on Facebook video views is that a vast proportion of users will view video content direct from their feeds, and Facebook mutes sound in video feeds.

This annotated video content helps consumers to understand video content whether the sound is off or on, and is likely to produce huge boosts for SEO and ranking.

Live streaming is becoming increasingly popular with consumers, as it confirms brand authenticity. What’s more, it’s an extremely accessible video solution for small businesses.

How come?

Well, all that’s required for live streaming is a tripod, a smartphone and the relevant social media account. So, it’s easy for smaller companies to produce content on a regular basis at affordable costs.

Many brands are also optimising their video content for mobile views, in other words for a square screen based on 1:1 screen ratios.

It’s increasingly likely that brands will adopt more purpose-driven video content through 2018 as well.

What does that mean?

In a nutshell, brands are likely to adopt causes and issues as a way of taking a moral stand on ethical issues that are likely to appeal to new customers and help ensure customer retention.

Creating a winning video content marketing formula for 2018 will rely on extensive research, planning, production and building methodologies.

Marketers need to carry out sufficient planning and preparation prior to creating video content and will then need to spend as much time on the promotion of the content.

Video marketing can provide far greater consumer engagement and is an excellent tool for sales funnels and enhancing levels of conversion.

Click funnels

Click funnels or sales funnels are marketing tools geared towards guiding site visitors to make a buying decision.

The click funnel can be accomplished in seven steps:

• the awareness step in which consumers become aware of the solution to their requirements

• the interest phase, where consumers demonstrate an interest in products by carrying out product research

• evaluation step, where the consumer takes a look at competitor products in the process of the buying decision

• the decision phase where the consumer reaches a final decision and sales negotiations commence

• the purchase step, where products or services are bought

• a phase for evaluation, in which B2B sales are reviewed and re-evaluated through the re-negotiation of contracts, etc

• the repurchase step, where customers will repurchase goods or services

Before you set about creating your business click funnel, you need to entirely understand the sales processes of your business.

The sales funnel is operational from the time a prospect visits your website until the time a purchase is made.

Aligning your website content with the various stages of the sales funnel is critical for moving prospects on to the next stage of the buying process.

Tools such as blogging, lead magnets to generate interest, webinars and videos can all be utilised throughout the click funnel exercise.

It’s also important to understand that different click funnels need to be in place to reflect the various types of visitors to your site, as they will have different reasons for making purchases.

This means you need to have a deep understanding of your customer base and create strategies to engage and maintain interest.

You can create your own sales funnels using programmes and templates from clickfunnel.com

User-generated content

User-generated content will become even more important for marketing through 2018.

Why?

Research highlights that up to 64% of consumers will seek out reviews before committing to any purchase.

Customer reviews and content generated by website users help make marketing a more authentic tool and can influence consumers in ways that are impossible for marketing departments to replicate.

Modern consumers often crave a deeper connection with business brands and user-generated content offers that human connection which cannot be replicated by any chatbot or AI generated texts.

A survey by Social Media Today has indicated that consumers find content more authentic when it incorporates user-generated comment and it enhances the human face of businesses.

Up to 48% of marketing professionals state that user-generated content humanises their interactions with consumers and can be one of the most interactive methods of connecting.

User-generated content (UGC) is more likely to increase conversions and consumer engagement, particularly when compared to branded content.

UGC can have an impact on all aspects of the sales funnel but is particularly useful for successful social media marketing.

Research from ComScore has indicated that consumers who are exposed to a mixture of UGC and professional branded content are 28% more engaged with relevant websites.

User-generated content can also prove an effective tool for wider marketing campaigns as it offers high-quality content giving customer perspectives on products or services.

2018 is likely to see heaps more ways in which marketers will utilise UGC to engage with their visitors.

Augmented Reality

Businesses are seeing cuts in ROI made into advertising, so one of the marketing trends that’s likely to really take off through 2018 is the use of augmented reality.

Augmented reality works by layering data and information by way of sounds, visuals and sensory experiences on to the consumer’s current experience.

Although augmented reality does change perceptions in some ways, it does not act in the totally immersive fashion of virtual reality

Augmented reality is a novel advertising tool which has already been used to great effect in 2018 by Coca-Cola, Ikea and Alipay.

 

 

Some other brands that have launched augmented reality ads include Nivea, Volkswagen and Starbucks, although consumers do currently perceive these campaigns as novelty gimmicks, rather than genuine advertising campaigns.

Globally, however, augmented reality ads started to take off in 2017, with a hike in spending up to $12.8bn globally.

Use of augmented reality within advertising campaigns allows consumers to interact with products in a fun and exciting manner and provides an immersive experience that can help personalise brands.

The most popular use of augmented reality to date has been the Pokemon Go game which launched in 2016.

Another company which has made successful use of augmented reality is Snapchat which was the first social media platform to offer augmented reality features to users, via its lenses.

IKEA and Apple have also partnered to offer consumers the ability to utilise IKEA Place to fit virtual furnishings inside plans of their interior. IKEA is projecting that this development will help increase online sales to around $5.9bn globally by the year 2020.

The cosmetics giant L’Oreal has also developed augmented reality apps which allow consumers to embrace virtual makeovers for cosmetics and hairstyles on selfie photos.

There are a number of ways in which augmented reality can be utilised within marketing.

What are these?

They include adding greater user interaction with content via use of augmented reality visual stickers or filters to enhance the consumer experience and encourage more shares.

Augmented reality can also be utilised to provide a “try before you buy” experience, whereby the consumer can extract products from your online store and fit them into alternative environments to see how they match.

It’s also possible to use augmented reality within app development to provide a more direct user interactive experience.

Before considering the use of augmented reality within your marketing strategy, it’s important to ensure it’s a good fit for your brand and suitable for enhancing the consumer experience.

Not every industry is suited to marketing via augmented reality, so there’s no reason to rush into adopting this new technology without first trialling out and user testing your developments. However, the future is looking extremely positive for businesses which can adopt this new technology.

Affiliate Marketing

Another key marketing trend for 2018 will see affiliate marketing move to more niche areas, opposed to the previous blanket approach which offered affiliate marketing opportunities to several hundred or even thousand sites.

Affiliate marketing is a practice used for recommending business products or services in return for sales generation and the payment of commissions and can include influencer marketing. 

A popular way of affilate marketing is via Amazons’ Affiliate programme called Amazon Associates.

With niche affiliate marketing, marketers will focus on smaller, more credible influencers.

It’s likely that marketers will focus their attention on industry-specific influencers and affiliate marketing will start to become recognised as a highly effective tool which is one of the top performing and most efficient channels.

Native ads are likely to be another emerging trend for 2018, with marketers using social media outlets, such as Instagram Stories, to enable native ads which have the consistent look and appeal of the platform on which they appear.

Eye-tracking research has shown that consumers view native ads up to 53% more often than they view banner ads.

It’s also forecast that native ads will make up around 75% of all ad revenue by the year 2020.

It’s also more likely that affiliate marketing through 2018 will be focused more on video and voice technologies.

It’s predicted that 82% of all internet traffic will be video by 2021, with live video streaming growing from around 3% currently to about 13% by the year 2021.

Affiliate marketing will also need to be far more transparent as the launch of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will make it essential for brands and influencers to obtain consent and ensure compliance with legislation regarding the processing of personal data. This transparency extends to brands ensuring they are transparent regarding the disclosure of paid advertising.

The growth in the use of mobile devices will mean it’s important for affiliate marketers to operate their programmes in a smart manner and take advantage of diversification of the affiliate base to ensure complete customer satisfaction.

There are numerous other 2018 trends in affiliate marketing and marketers need to remain on the ball to take advantage of all new developments and technologies.

Pinned Instagram Stories

Social marketers will find that pinned Instagram stories will be a major marketing trend for 2018, as they offer opportunities to showcase a series of product images to audiences.

Using the geo-location facility on Stories helps target your audience more specifically to preferred countries or cities and you will also have the ability to add your location to slides in your Stories campaign.

Although Instagram Stories disappear from your feed within 24 hours of posting, utilising the Instagram Highlights option pins your Stories, so they remain on display for as long as you require.

At present, Instagram is the fastest-growing social network and currently boasts 800 million active users, so it’s critically important to start using the platform for increasing reach and engagement.

Use of Instagram Stories offers marketing departments an unrivalled opportunity to show a more informal side of the business, which is particularly appealing to millennials.

In what way?

Well, it helps consumers develop more understanding of your brand and feel much closer due to opportunities to offer behind the scenes clips and footage.

Around 33% of the most popular Stories on Instagram are published by business users and 20% of these Stories will result in direct messaging from consumers.

Some of the most popular business Stories on Instagram relate to informal insights into daily working lives in the branded company. And these Stories can boost consumer engagement by up to 20% when the correct informal tone and voice are used to create a friendly link-up with visitors.

One useful tip to remember when shooting video for Instagram Stories is to make sure your picture is in portrait format, so it can be viewed on the site.

Accurate use of hashtags can further increase engagement by up to 12%.

Research has shown that 120 million consumers have engaged with brands following viewings of ads on Instagram.

Illustrating stories of your brand using Instagram Stories is a creative and exciting way to reach out to new consumers and offers a lot of potential for marketers using the right blend of information coupled with friendliness to enhance engagement.

Facebook Watch

Facebook launched its Watch tab in 2017 and hopes it will soon rival YouTube.

There are a variety of ways that businesses can use Watch for marketing purposes, and although the service is still in its early days, it is well worth considering for marketing in 2018.

In what way you might be asking?

Brands can run ads midway through shows on Watch and Facebook is also considering running ads prior to shows as well.

There is also the opportunity to create original shows for Watch and this is currently being trialled by a group of creators, such as Refinery 29 and Business Insider. This group of brands is also being offered the chance to create branded shows, as long as they utilise Facebook’s branded content tag.

Facebook is also considering opening up Watch so it’s more suited to individual creators, in the fashion of YouTube and also offering brands the opportunities to select the shows with which they wish to partner for ads.

It is true, however, that the long format of Watch is more suited to marketers with the major brands who have large corporate marketing budgets.

Some of the brands interested in Watch have agreed to sponsor one show, for example, the episode of The Art of Photography which was recently sponsored by Squarespace.

At present, marketers are being cautioned to take their time over committing in any big way to Watch, as it’s understood there may be issues surrounding viewer retention on the site.

Statistics are currently indicating that viewers are only being retained for around 23 seconds for videos, but the average video length is from 4 to 20 minutes.

Facebook has already committed to investing $1bn into the launch of Watch, so big budget marketers who have the funds to test out the service may well want to give it a try.

A recent report from Hootsuite has highlighted that social TV looks set to trend from 2018, so making an early move into Facebook Watch could well prove beneficial for some corporate brands.

At present, the shows that are proving successful on Watch tend to be skewed to their news feed type formula. A show called Struggle Meals which presents cooking on a budget has achieved 15 million in the first season, and it seems that programme-makers who stick to short films of around six minutes or so are having the most success.

Newsfeed also tends to be the biggest driver of views for Watch at this moment in time.

Voice search optimisation

Optimising websites for voice searches is another key marketing trend for 2018 and beyond.

Why’s that?

The rising uptake for virtual assistants, such as Siri and Alexa, means that voice searches are on the increase.

Indeed, it’s estimated that around 50% of all searches will be voice searches by the year 2020.

This makes it critical for marketers to start paying attention to featured snippets and ways in which they can be used to enhance site SEO for voice searches.

Optimising for featured snippets means voice optimisation as well as text-based optimisation.

Providing the best information in clear tones of voice in snippets between 40 and 50 words helps you achieve #0 position required for successful optimisation and can increase sessions by up to 516%.

There is more available information on optimising for voice search on the internet now, so marketers need to take time to research ways in which their business can optimise to achieve the highest level #0 rankings.

Google highlight that up to 88% of searches looking for businesses “near me” come from mobile devices, so updating your Google local business listing is also an important task to carry out.

Voice searches are 30 times more likely to utilise action type verbs such as “buy” or “find”, so optimising your content around these types of searches is one way of enhancing SEO.

At present it’s impossible to ascertain the complete range of opportunities offered by voice searches and just what opportunities will become available for marketers.

Why is this?

Voice search is still in its very early developmental stages and participating in the Google Actions programme may well also prove a useful marketing tool which could give your business an additional channel.

Starting to think creatively and actively about ways in which you can optimise for voice now is one way to ensure your business does not miss the boat with this new form of marketing and help create best ROI over the longer term.

It’s likely that paid advertising will become available on Google Home at some point, so understanding the nuances of voice searches will become even more critical for marketers.

Voice optimisation is definitely the future for SEO so it’s important for marketers to give careful consideration to the ways in which their business will benefit from this new technology.

SEO

SEO and content marketing is becoming one of the most sought-after forms of marketing in 2018.

Search Engine Optimisation consists of many different ranking techniques that can put your website on the top positions of major search engines.

But, how do you get there?

We can break down ranking a website in 2 different sections.

Section 1 would be the on-page development of a website.

If we find that the website does not have a strong base, the results that we build may be unstable and we will find that the maximum results may not be achieved when moving onto link building strategies in the later stages.

We like to think of SEO as a puzzle and we struggle to create the main picture if we don’t have all the pieces first.

If the user experience is damaged, Google will limit your organic traffic growth.

By making sure we are technically optimised, we will pull in any issues with site loading speeds, mobile friendliness, duplicate content, 302 redirects , Redirect chains, 404 errors, Canonical errors, Duplicate META data and incorrect uses of directives (noindex, nofollow, etc).

You can check out any issues on a site by running an audit, which could find a significant amount of issues.

Section 2 would consist of link building, which is one of the main ranking factors of SEO. Neil Patel has written an awesome article that explains the ins and outs of how to rank a website.

So, why would I need it?

93% of online experiences begin with a search query or using a search engine.

And, a huge 81% of people carry out online research before committing to a large purchase online.

Whilst search engine optimisation has been an age-old tactic, we can see that algorithms change regularly, making each year a completely different way of ranking.

In 2018, we can see that search is moving beyond the simple desktop method and jumping into mobile platforms.

over 50% of organic searches are performed on phones. Yes. That is an awful lot of searches that are not on desktop.

When we compare this figure to 2009, mobile searches only contributed towards 0.7% of the total searches carried out organically.

To decrease the search amount of desktop even more, a further 10% of searches are carried out on tablets.

So, there are a lot more reasons to opt for including SEO into your marketing plan in 2018, but to summarise why search is such an investment, If we were to give you £5 for every £1 you gave us, how much money would you end up trusting us with?

Finding the right search engine optimisation agency will be a great ROI when you’ve bagged the top positions on any of the major search engines.

YouTube Reels

Reels are YouTube’s answer to Instagram Stories and the site began beta testing them in November 2017. They are designed specifically for YouTube creators and will be ideal for business users.

Reels are available to creators with more than 10,000 subscribers and offer marketers a fantastic opportunity to engage further with customers.

In what way?

Well, Reels gives you opportunities to connect in a variety of ways, including texts, polls, pictures and animated GIFs.

Marketers already using YouTube will find that Reels provides more ways to publish the stories of their brand and enhance their reach.

For example, Amazon uses Reels to engage with new and existing advertisers on a global basis.

One of the major advantages of YouTube is that it is a platform specifically created for expert level editing, so marketers will find Reels is superb for background editing and creating professional-style content.

Unlike Stories, Reels don’t disappear at the end of 24 hours and give marketers opportunities to create multiple Reels with videos connected to individual topics.

It’s also possible that YouTube may be considering monetised ads in the future, so marketers should keep an eye on this valuable opportunity throughout 2018.

Snackable Video Content

Snackable video content is another 2018 trend which is likely to prove popular for marketing purposes.

Research has highlighted that shorter videos garner most consumer attention, with videos between six and 12 seconds proving most popular with viewers.

Snackable content should be interesting and informative while keeping to overall time constraints to grab consumer attention and rouse interest.

While all the social media platforms are chock a block with ad content, creating snackable video content is one way to make your brand stand out from the crowd.

Google, Fox, YouTube and Facebook have all introduced six-second ads for 2018 and these are highly likely to prove popular.

These snackable video content ads are known as bumper ads and a recent survey from Google highlighted that nine out of ten of these ads drove consumer recall, with 61% contributing to lifting brand awareness.

Marketers and their creative teams will find it extremely challenging to present ads of six seconds, so this form of content is highly likely to drive the creation of brand-driven stories and sustain these audience conversations across a variety of different channels.

Snackable video content is set to revolutionise the video ad creation market and will prove an ideal medium for social media platforms, where consumer concentration is fleeting.

Statistics show that 82% of the audience on Twitter watches video content, while Youtube garners about 5bn video views on a daily basis.

Video marketing is an excellent way to grab viewer attention on social media channels and snackable video content is sure to prove a hit with consumers and marketers alike.

Privacy protect

Data privacy as a service is likely to be booming from 2018 onwards due to requirements of GDPR.

In early 2017 around 90% of brands surveyed by Dell on the implications of GDPR stated that existing requirements were unlikely to meet up with GDPR requirements.

This creates huge opportunities for service providers and organisations to tailor their offering to meet GDPR requirements and really advertise their compliance.

A Deloitte survey showed that around 80% of consumers either “strongly” or “somewhat” agreed that data privacy was a real concern and they would be far more likely to buy products from businesses that highlighted how important personal privacy actually was.

Some marketers could even find that guaranteeing their customer data privacy will provide a unique selling point for the business.

There are four key aspects that will be changing when GDPR comes into effect.

What are these?

Firstly, businesses that don’t comply with the requirements of GDPR will face hefty fines which could be as high as 4% of global business turnover.

Companies will also face a requirement to demonstrate they protect personal data in an adequate fashion. What’s more, any data leaks will need to be reported to regulators within 72 hours of the breach being discovered.

All companies will be obliged to demonstrate far greater transparency with regard to the collection and processing of personal data. And personal data could be anything from an IP address to a customer’s address, name, or phone number.

GDPR allows consumers to take back control over their personal data, with rights to be deleted or forgotten which will need to be enacted by most business providers.

Using a service provider who offers data privacy as a service may be one option for marketers to consider in the run up to GDPR on 25 May 2018 and for the foreseeable future.

Businesses with complex offerings may well find that the requirements of GDPR are far too serious and could cause potential detrimental impacts to their business.

Marketers could well find that opting for a privacy protect service provides the safeguards required to keep their business operating successfully following GDPR.

The digital marketing trends highlighted above will all prove winners through 2018, so savvy marketers should pick and choose their preferred marketing options to make the most of marketing opportunities through 2018 and beyond.

Technological advances mean that 2018 is an exciting year for digital marketing and further developments in artificial intelligence and machine learning are likely to create even more advances.

Staying on top of digital marketing means making the most of every suitable opportunity in the early stages, but many of these technologies and developments will be around for the foreseeable future. So, taking developments like Reels or Watch on board in their first few months of operation could prove an extremely valuable marketing tool for some businesses.

Businesses with customers based within the EU will find the requirements of GDPR need to be met from 25 May 2018 and this legislation carries some heavy penalties for companies that don’t comply. Even companies based outside the boundaries of the EU are affected by GDPR if they sell to customers living within EU borders, so it’s vitally important to ensure and maintain GDPR-compliance when it comes to handling and processing personal data.

Attracting and maintaining your customer base is the very lifeblood of your business, so staying up to speed with current digital marketing trends is vital for building the trust and interest of consumers. Taking the time to reinforce your sales message by embracing new digital marketing techniques will be essential through 2018 and beyond.

Further sources:

https://oursocialtimes.com/3-chatbot-trends-to-inspire-your-marketing-strategy/

https://www.comm100.com/blog/live-chat-benefits.html

https://blog.kissmetrics.com/live-chat/

http://www.thedrum.com/news/2018/01/09/influencer-marketing-2018-will-become-integral-part-brand-s-marketing-mission

http://www.marketingtechexpo.co.uk/news/blog.asp?blog_id=7593

https://www.market-inspector.co.uk/blog/2018/01/influencer-marketing

https://www.business2community.com/video-marketing/digital-video-content-trends-2018-02007693

https://www.ringdna.com/inside-sales-glossary/what-is-the-sales-funnel

https://autogrow.co/best-sales-funnel-examples/

https://www.mailmunch.co/blog/sales-funnel/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescommunicationscouncil/2018/03/21/digital-marketing-in-the-age-of-virtual-and-augmented-reality/#170e576766e8

http://www.alleywatch.com/2018/03/how-to-use-augmented-reality-in-your-2018-marketing-strategy/