Marketing Trends for 2016

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By | Nov 9, 2015

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Changes in Technology and attitudes are without doubt two of the key factors that shape marketing. The impact of the rapidly changing technology is particularly more intense in digital marketing, which makes it more difficult for a majority of brands today to keep up with the resulting changes.

What message does this send to competitive marketers that are already eyeing 2016? Well, it’s that time when brands need to get a little more creative with the kind of channels they choose for their marketing pursuits. In this post, we’ll look at some of the notable marketing trends that marketers should consider in their plans for 2016.

1. Relationship Marketing

The primary goal of relationship marketing is to help a brand develop lasting relationships and more loyalty amongst its customers rather than just focusing on short-term customer acquisition and making individual sales. With this, firms can develop stronger customer connections to their brands which in turn boosts the much-needed word of mouth promotions and organic lead generation. This, therefore, means that companies that focus on creating meaningful customer relationships and conversions easily develops brand advocates and loyalists.

So, how can a company personalize its outreach efforts to build better customer relationships? First, it’s easier than ever to obtain data that can help you develop sounder relationship-marketing plans. On the contrary, firms that still rely on the intrusive, mass-target approaches to their marketing pursuits are courting failure especially now that consumers are increasingly becoming selective in what they want to read or view. As such, it is also important for companies to maintain transparency between them and their consumers and target to build lasting relationships with them.

2. Automation of the Marketing Process

Did you know that marketing automation industry alone is worth $5.5 Billion? Well, this is a clear indication of how important the process has become to brands. Besides, it is also the leading method used in lead generations and prospect nurturing. Automating marketing makes it easier for marketers to schedule and automate various tasks such as social media posting, email management, content management, tracking different customers’ activities, etc. With this kind of automation, your business also highlights its growth of convergence that allows you to stay focused and profitable without compromising on quality.

Marketing managers and CMOs in any firm should, therefore, define a robust automation strategy that focuses on engaging prospects and shortening the overall sales cycle.

3. Location-Based Marketing Technology

Location-based technology is popularly used by event professionals and marketers to create interactive experiences and engage target users at a particular point. Today, various technologies such as iBeacons and RFIDs have made the process possible. iBeacons are small electronic transmitters with a capacity to detect nearby compatible devices using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology. They can be used in merchandising areas, points of sales displays and retail stores.

Besides, iBeacons can also be used in events and conferences for attendees’ engagement such as in talks and exchanges sessions. The technology can also be integrated with platforms such as LinkedIn to connect participants and facilitate sharing of messages, which helps to curb delayed communication that is common with emails.

On the other hand, Radio Frequency Identification Devices (RFID) are tiny electronic devices with chips and an antenna that facilitate the devices’ unique identification. RFIDs can be used by attendees in an event for communication and general engagements. Besides, event organizers and even brands can communicate with their targeted audiences using the technology.

4. Virtual Reality

The use of Virtual Reality Technology is expected to grow and have more impact on marketing in 2016. It is a no brainer that personalization and consumer engagement is now more important in marketing than it has before. With Virtual Reality, companies can engage their customers by offering virtual experiences to them and forming more personal relationships with them.

5. Ephemeral Marketing

The growing popularity of Snapchat is something that should interest any competitive marketer as we approach 2016. Marketers should no longer consider the platform as a tool for making fun marketing experiments. Rather, Snapchat is now already a “standard marketing platform.”

Snapchat has over time matured to become the ultimate marketing platform with popular brands such as ESPN and Comedy Central already using it to market and engage with their audiences. The platform uniquely converts advertisements into products which makes it difficult even for competitors to ignore. For this reason, it is vital for you as a marketer to take advantage of this tremendous opportunity and begin nurturing your audience on Snapchat come 2016.

6. Search Beyond SERPs

The number of search engines keeps growing each day with Facebook becoming the latest to show an intent to join this family comprising of Google, Yahoo and Bing. This opens a room for brands to make the best out of such search capabilities once they are introduced in social media platforms. Besides, the introduction of the buy buttons on social media platforms that is expected to take place in 2016 will help promote more convergence thereby making marketing easier.

In a nutshell, the introduction of advanced search capabilities and integration of payment methods on popular social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook will help to boost purchasing and ease marketing. Good marketers should, therefore, set sights on these expected developments to ensure that they take advantage of them in 2016.

7. The Internet of Things (IoT)

Wearable technology is predicted to see a significant popularity growth in 2016 with its adoption rate set to reach 28% by the year end. This translates to more available data for use by marketers as the Internet of Things continues to grow even bigger as a tool that marketers can use to engage and interact with prospects.

This shift in the manner in which marketers can source relevant information from their target groups will likely influence the ad creation process in 2016. This is because data collected from these consumers will be assumed to be behavior-driven and, therefore, representing their needs and preferences. This will make marketing increasingly accurate and more likely efficient.

92 West's Conclusion for 2016

There you have it. The 7 key game-changing trends every marketer should consider when crafting their 2016 marketing plans. By the time 2017 comes knocking, we will already have made our observation and analysis, and as usual, provide you with the latest tricks for use in that year as well. 

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