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As the leaves change colors and 2014 begins to wind down, it is time to once again look forward and start planning for a new year. In digital marketing, as in all online media, the speed of change has been dizzying and is unlikely to slow down any time soon. Trends that surfaced recently will continue to grow in importance and complexity.
We’ve taken the time to organize a few key digital marketing trends to keep an eye on here – that, while not necessarily new, are still critical to keep in mind as you begin to plan your marketing strategy for 2015.
Though it has been important for at least the past year, content and marketing campaigns will continue to be broken down into smaller and smaller segments that will inevitably result in completely individualized content. As the targeting and tracking of potential clients and customers have become easier with technology, it will become ever more important for the messaging and visuals that prospects receive to be customized specifically to their needs and concerns. “Micro-targeting” will allow you to identify profitable niche subsets and allow you to deploy the most relevant strategies and content throughout the buying cycle.
The concept of big data has now been around long enough that it is now time for it to “come of age” and is a requirement for any successful business. Marketers of all levels and industries need to be able to gather, analyze and interpret the data generated through their communication efforts. It will be applied to all levels of decision making as well, from ideation and content creation to tracking and review of campaign performance. The tools are available that make it easy, now is the time to put analytics to work.
Mobile and social platforms are continuing to show the largest growth in advertising dollars as our eyes and ears are continuing to spend more and more time plugged into them. This also means that marketing teams will need to continue efforts to create valuable content and campaigns for these channels. Content optimized for these areas must be focused on visuals and get straight to the point – plan your communications accordingly!
While the generation of original content was important in 2014, it will be even more important for marketers to make this same content relevant to their audiences in the coming year. While marketers are always proud of the vast amounts of content they produce, a less is more approach could be useful to ensure that customer pain points and concerns are addressed thoroughly and completely by all your marketing materials. Once you have your relevant content and have proven its value through analytics, you can even directly promote that content through the myriad paid promotion options that social and mobile platforms provide.
We hope these four digital marketing trends will help you get a jump start on your strategic planning for 2015. In the meantime if you’re looking to begin a new campaign, be sure to check out our strategic communications template to get you started on the right foot.
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