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2019 Marketing Hot Topics

With the marketing landscape constantly changing, it’s difficult to predict what might happen next. That said, what marketers look for is trends and patterns of behaviour and pay particular attention to areas seeing growth. As advances in technology continue to rule our data driven world, here are a few hot topics we are going to keep our eye on this year. 

Voice search dominates
Ok, so it’s no surprise to learn that teens are active users of voice search, but what if we told you that adults are also stepping away from the keyboard and voice search is taking over! According to Google, 55% of teenagers and 41% of adults use voice search more than once a day. And the most common things they are searching for is asking for directions; calling someone and dictating text. Did you know you can speak your emoji? Simply try enabling dictation on your mobile and say winky face emoji and see what happens! It is estimated that 50% of all searches will be conducted through voice by 2020, and it’s only a matter of time until voice will be considered the norm. Using voice to dictate a message can be up to three times faster than typing! 

Personalisation matters
A key trend that will continue to grow this year is personalised marketing. This includes content, emails, products and so much more. Have you noticed that more of our national retailers are offering this? Remember when you could have your name on a can of coke? How about your name on a jar of vegemite? Cotton On is another company getting heavy into personalisation and some early market research results suggest that emails that offer this feature are three times more successful. When you login to Netflix you are fed a percentage match of shows that link to your viewing history. The opportunity for businesses is to find how you can offer personalisation to your customers and ensure that you are capturing these details from their first contact with your brand. 

Instagram TV (IGTV) is here
Did you know that Instagram recently launched its own YouTube competitor Instagram TV (IGTV). Until now Instagram has featured stories that disappear after 24 hours, and traditional Instagram videos which only allow users to record videos up to one minute. IGTV content stays permanently on the platform, with the capability of recording videos up to an hour in duration. Still, in its early days, IGTV will cement its role in the social media landscape this year and continue to disrupt the video market with its unique content opportunities. Whether being used as a platform for sharing training videos, or for showcasing interviews with key industry influencers, IGTV provides another way for brands to meaningfully engage with their followers. The social media environment is rapidly changing, so stay tuned! 



“the opportunity for businesses is to find how you can offer personalisation to your customers”



Gen-Z are now the majority
This year, Gen-Z will overtake Millennials as the largest generation and is represented by those born after 1996. They are the ones that have seen the failings of Millennials in the digital arena and hyped to be the game changers of the future. Look out world, here comes a generation that currently represents over 30% of us… Are we ready for the generation that is constantly connected to technology to start being active consumers? What opportunities does this present to your business and how are you going to start influencing this generation? 

Micro-Influencers are being preferred
Influencer marketing is a kind of word-of-mouth system that focuses on using prominent people or celebrities endorsing your brands message to their loyal followers. But no longer do you have to be a celebrity to be an influencer. We have seen a rise in the micro-influencer, who are regular, real people.  You could be a mum with a few thousand followers on Instagram and businesses are choosing these types of influencers to drive their brand message, as people generally trust consumer opinions over corporate statements.

Chatbots grow in numbers
They said in the 80s that robots would replace our jobs, and they certainly are! Powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) automation, chatbots are reshaping the way customers interact with brands. Available to answer queries and provide helpful direction, chatbots are commonly found on Facebook and websites offering an immediate personalised experience. 

According to IBM, by 2020 85% of all customer interactions will be handled without a human! 

Our wonderful industry of marketing is becoming increasingly complex, so ensure you are seeking advice from a suitably qualified person to guide and direct your business into 2019. The team at The Marketing Factory are always keeping a keen eye on emerging trends and happy to apply them to your marketing strategy. 



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Social media is easy, right?

Create a business page on the platforms you like, link all your social accounts up to Hootsuite or similar, start scheduling posts, setup automatic message replies and bam! People start engaging and sharing your content.

Well that was great… a few years ago when every post would reach most of your followers. Now social media platforms have changed and continue to change every day. Just when you might think you have mastered the craft, the field changes. It is proving increasingly difficult to keep up or even predict what developers might change next to stay ahead of the game. New social media platforms will enter the market and threaten the existing ones we have grown to rely on. The arena is highly competitive and with a digital advertising spend of $7.9B, you can understand why.

Source: IAB Australia/PwC Online Ad Expenditure Report; CEASA

These days, as a business, we have to use social media differently if you want to grow a following and keep them. We need to get back to the roots of why each platform was created and what their intended use is. Facebook was not created as a shopping tool to sell people your products or services, surprisingly, it was developed as a way for us human beings to interact with each other, no matter the time or distance. As we reflect on this as a team, looking back to 2003 when Facebook landed literally on our laps, some of us were barely teenagers and have not known life without it. The other half of us can remember joining Facebook and how it suddenly made you feel that you were connected with friends, even though you hadn’t physically seen them for quite some time. One of our teams’ favourite Facebook features is the birthday reminders, giving you a chance to send good wishes into your friends’ special day, that may have previously been otherwise forgotten.

So if you want to know where to put your money and attention in 2019, keep reading.

Understand the strength of each social media platform
Facebook was not designed to drive traffic to your website. Facebook was originally designed for you, that’s right you, to be creating posts and engaging in discussion with your friends, followers or fans. Every day Facebook is making it more difficult for you to reach your entire following without paying for it. So what is there to do? The pressure of posting fun, unique and sharable content exists in every post. Followers can be fickle and unfollow at the click of a button, so providing handy information, sharing untold stories and benefits about your business is the key to keeping your following engaged.

Be real
There is nothing worse than following a business on social media only to discover that the business isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Be as authentic and real as you possibly can across all your social media platforms and don’t be afraid if you are a little bit different. Conversely, if you think you are a little bit boring, you may need to search a little harder to find ways of making your posts more interesting. But always remember this, people want to do business with people, not corporations. They want to get to know the people that make up the corporations. We are quickly realising that the people stories are what makes other people want to do business with you. Like attracts like and if people like you, your business will be a place they enjoy engaging with.

Stand Out
Just because your competition is doing it, doesn’t mean it’s a great idea for you to do it as well. Stop being a sheep and following the flock, and start doing the opposite of what your industry is doing. There you will find the gold, the cream, that may even create a disturbance in the mass amount of information that is being fed to potential customers that will find your content much more interesting than your competitor next door.

Stop selling and start engaging
You know those business pages you see all the time with sponsored posts in your feed. All they do is sell sell sell. You think, yeah I kinda like some of the products they offer, but all they do is try to jam their entire product line down my throat and now it’s somewhat annoying – I might unfollow them. Don’t be that business. Develop a ratio of how much of your content will be informative and engaging content and how much of it will be sales related.

Share images that don’t relate to your business
Sometimes businesses think that if I’m in accounting, then all the images I can show are calculators and graphs. Instead of showcasing the features or services your business offers, showcase the benefits of what it means to have a great accountant. Showcase people living their lives in abundance. Share a success story from one of your existing customers. Share photos of what you do for lunch, the activities you do as a team, as this all contributes to your success as a business. There is no time to be shy in business, people want to do business with people they trust. The quicker you can make this happen, the faster your following will grow.

Monitor and measure all your results
Firstly, you need to have a plan and stick to it. You need to have clearly defined goals. Then, you need to know what works, at what time and why. Understanding why a post generates more likes, shares or comments and how you can replicate this with other content is essential to keeping your following.

The world of social media is ever changing. As a new member of The Marketing Factory team, I welcome you to reach out and get in touch to discuss how we can make great things happen for your business on social media. I look forward to meeting you soon.