With the onset of the new year, marketers have realized that the challenges and opportunities for them in 2015 have been like never before. This requires greater awareness about the latest trends in the digital world, contributing towards enhanced customer experience, customization, and multi- platform marketing techniques.
It is important to be aware of changes in consumer behavior and trends.
Consumers are embracing new technology and it affects consumer spending and redefines marketing strategy. Knowledge about the latest marketing channels and importance of enhanced connectivity helps any marketer design new and improved marketing communication.
Strategic Questions for Digital Marketers(1)
- How do consumers spend their time across various virtual devices, platforms, and channels?
- What is the spending pattern of consumers over these platforms and channels?
- How do you devise ways to define the most apt marketing message for these consumers?
Top Digital Trends – Key to Success for Marketers
In 2015, Smartphones have become the remote control of our lives with enhanced adoption of technology. Marketers are faced with the challenge of being responsive in terms of usability across a range of virtual devices and platforms. Brands need to be action-oriented and relevant across these touch points.
To succeed in the digital world, brands need to be responsive in terms of design that are compatible across various platforms and device types. With the changing marketing paradigm where mobility and social media are important aspects, brands need to be fast, flexible, and fluid.(2)
Being responsive enables a brand to provide a portable and customized user experience to its customers. As per the ‘Digital Marketing Outlook’ report of E-consultancy (April 16, 2014), client side marketers consider certain areas that keep them ahead of the curve. These areas include social media, data-driven optimization, mobile, integrated design, and responsive design.(3)
Many companies consider treating customer experience as a competitive advantage for themselves. This requires aligning the goal of all teams working in the organization’s realm towards jointly attaining this goal. The digital trend report of E-consultancy (2014) shows that 44 percent of business organizations view customer experience/service as a key differentiator as against 28 percent who termed product quality as a differentiator from competition.(4)
As per the Adobe ‘Digital Roadblock’ survey (2015), customized communication acts as the most important marketing tool and top digital concern. As per the survey, other important priority areas for marketers involved content optimization, social media involvement, viral marketing, search engine marketing, mobile optimization and mobile app engagement. Customization doesn’t function in isolation. It functions across the entire customer journey with omni-channel and multi-device communication for customized service and product offering.(5)
Marketers need to realize that mobile has become indispensable in our lives. It touches everything, including our personal and professional realm. Whether it is listening to music, booking tickets, or ordering food, mobile has become a substantially powerful tool. Mobile has redefined our concepts of entertainment, commerce, and content. As per the Emarketer webinar, by the end of 2015, 70 percent of the entire US search would be through mobile. In a mobile focused world, context would be an important characteristic.(6)
Cross Device Targeting:
Consumers today focus on multi-screen multi-tasking. Marketers should understand this behavior and enhance sales by targeting customers across an array of devices. Use of location data, user identification, and re-engagement through mobile apps help marketers redefine their strategy.
The Measurement and Analytics Report 2014, by E-consultany has focussed on important analytics which could be used by digital businesses to assess the changing paradigm of consumer behavior.
The important attributes include:
- Following consumer behavior across multi-channel and multi-devices
- Customization and targeting
- Identifying the most valuable group of consumers for business
- Assessing customer experience as a whole
- Recognizing the design of content engagement and response towards an advertisement/campaign
Internet of Things (IoT):
This involves the entire group of things – people, places and objects that are and will remain connected over the internet to garner data to be transferred across networks through devices and apps. The data is analyzed to understand the information. For example through IoT, businesses would be capable of closely monitoring their inventory level through a mobile app. The potential of IoT is simply massive, as very soon it will be integrated across our personal and professional space. IT has the potential to develop into a multi-dollar market.(7)
In 2015, the mobile and social scene will become integrated and coordinated through increased brands responsiveness, customization, customer experience, multi device targeting, and IoT. Marketers need to realize the changing landscape and devise coordinated strategies surrounding elaborate sets of consumer behavior. Marketers need to understand the synchronized effect of the top digital trends and spend accordingly to justify their overall brand value.
(4,5) E-consultancy. “Digital trends 2015: CX & personalisation still high priorities.” September 2014. E-consultancy.
(1,2,3,6) Elkin, Noah. “Key Digital Trends-15 Things to Know for 2015 – Webinar.” 11 December 2014. EMarketer Website. 30 January 2015
(7)Forbes. “Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends For 2015.” 2015. Forbes Website. 30 January 2015