February 4, 2015
Although the basics of marketing tend to remain unchanged, the advances in technology show marked changes over time. One needs to keep up with the times and tweak the fundamentals. Smart people, who are marketing savvy, realize the importance of staying far ahead of the current trends. They always anticipate what is just around the corner, lest they be taken by surprise by their competitors. Here are a few tips that will help keep in tune with developments set to take place in the coming year.
1. Being transparent and upfront will evolve as a powerful marketing tool
As always, the customer continues to remain king. Customers have a definite say, and will influence how businesses turn out in the coming year. The idea of being transparent has caught on, with most businesses religiously following the mantra. Several brands have established themselves firmly, with transparency being touted as a major plus. In the coming year too, customers are not going to be fooled by clever ad copy, or any other marketing gimmicks. They will stick to brands that believe in adopting ethical business practices. Customers want to know what businesses have in store for them. It pays for brands to keep the interest of the customer foremost in the agenda.
2. Marketing technologists will reign supreme
Today, with most small- and medium-sized businesses taking to digital marketing in a big way, almost everyone is seeking a share of the pie. Decision need to think of marketing in an all new digital world. The most successful marketers in today’s digital world are the marketing technologists, who are in tune with digital technology and its nuances. These technologists will blend with the existing marketing groups and devise new strategies that need to be implemented.
ORM specialists, Profile Defenders suggests: “Maintaining your profile / reputation online is crucial these days if you want to be an aggressive marketer. It is hard to stop anybody from Googleing your name but you need to control the results your customers see on Google.”
3. Social media cannot be ignored
Most online marketing companies have witnessed the impact social media has on today’s changing marketing scenario. Instead of relying on time-tested, long-term strategies, the rules are being rewritten. Companies now go in for “quick kills” keeping in tune with today’s trend of “likes” and “shares” that can help a concept go viral. Tweets and “clicks” are not far behind, adding to their metrics by making use of the vast database that keeps feeding vital information. With lead times being reduced drastically, businesses are realizing profits at a never before rate and scale.
4. Paradigm shift prefers personalization to globalization
The world is no longer too large for anything. Thanks to the Internet, and technology in general, it is a very small world today. In spite of this, there is a marked trend that favors regional and local markets. Paying attention to individualized preferences and consumer trends seems to be the order of the day. Customers no longer want to be homogenized and be a part of the maddening crowd that mass marketers target. They want to be singled out and pampered with personalized attention, and the trend is here to stay. Even global brands are rethinking their strategies and making suitable changes to pay more attention to regional and local markets that can be tapped better.
5. Mobile marketing is set to continue
Mobile marketing, which was almost scoffed at and ignored, has taken off in a big way — so much so, that most companies are designing or redesigning (responsive Web designing) their websites to make them compatible with mobile screens. Brands today are focusing on mobile marketing technology because they know that the impact is greater, and that it is a bull’s-eye target that they have in their sights. Technology is at work to make viewing from a three-inch screen easy enough to have and hold the customer’s attention. If ordering is at their fingertips, and deliveries are made to their doorstep, customers won’t stop to think twice. Offers and discounts also act as added incentives.
6. Visual marketing has made its mark
The impact of visual marketing is too intense to ignore. The appeal that visual marketing has ensures brands have the desired effect. With a host of visual marketing aids like YouTube, Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram and Vine playing a major part in today’s marketing strategy, the impact is huge. There are several visual storytelling successes online that other marketers are keen to follow. B2B marketers have realized the reach and hold that social media has can sway consumer preferences drastically.
7. Internal communications will be given due focus
Only when companies focus enough on internal communications can they reap the full benefits of marketing. While companies pay more attention to brand ambassadors that are poised to propel marketing to greater heights, they need to also have their employees work in tandem with vendors to make their brands successful. Once the employees realize the important role they have to play, half the battle is won.
In short, it is a ‘do or die’ situation today. Companies that do not change strategies according to changing times are bound to be left out. Adaptation is the key to success in today’s highly competitive market that throws up countless opportunities.
Joydeep Bhattacharya is an internet marketer and owner of the SEO blog, SEO Sandwitch. He has been associated with SEO, SMO, PPC, ORM and other activities related to online marketing for the past 5 years.