Digital Marketing Trends for 2017
With the constant rate of change in technology and digital marketing, 2017 will see some new marketing channels becoming more pervasive. It will also be a year where old standbys become more prominent or take more leading roles.
I have itemized or listed (in no particular order or hierarchy) some of the top digital marketing trends for 2017 in the below article. While this article does provide some basic definitions or explanations of each marketing trend, the purpose of the article is more to provide an itemized list rather than to explain the definitions. I hope it is useful:
Improving website experiences (IWE) is fast becoming a leading marketing tool for successful firm and savvy marketers. Historically, this has been a “softer” science with website owner attempting to intuit what was working or not working on their site or attempting to interpret data points through Google Analytics or other tools.
Much of this has become exclusively data driven now with new tools that provide instant analysis. They provide readily available actionable intelligence to determine how consumers react to their time on websites and their online experiences on any specific site. These tools will become rapidly more pervasive in digital marketing.
Not surprisingly Paid Search (otherwise known as Pay per Click or Google Adwords programs) are still a hot and growing trend in digital marketing. While Paid Search rates are consistently escalating, the rankings criteria used to rank even with paid search are growing more sophisticated and gone are the days when advertisers could just buy their way to the top of the rankings. Now a site need to demonstrate strong merit as well.
I anticipate Paid Search will continue to grow as new advertisers enter the market. How well one ranks within Pay Per Click will be a key differentiator for sites that do well in this digital marketing category.
SEO: key digital marketing channel for 2017
Search Engine Optimization will be another key digital marketing channel for 2017. While SEO is largely an inherent part of any site (difficult to manipulate and based on years of proper groundwork for a site), more and more investment will continue to flow in this direction.
Many legacy or aged sites with good SEO will see the value of making additional investment into their platforms in order to further improve their rankings. Sites with no search engine presence or SEO will start making the introductory investment to reap benefit down the road.
While the expectation is that SEO is a “free” marketing channel, more and more site owners will recognize that SEO does require consistent and significant resource investment and time allocation. More websites will be making the allocations to improve their digital marketing in this regard.
One area of SEO that will continue to guide the digital marketing landscape is the adaptive mobile design initiative. As Google places more and more value on mobile design that have contextual content and accelerated loading times, this will be a key factor for many websites in maximizing the value of SEO.
Conversion Optimization will continue to be a hot trend in digital marketing in 2017. Extensive testing on one’s website is a critical variable here. Trying different product mixes, presentation or pricing for instance on an ecommerce platform can radically improve the number of people that place items in their shopping carts and checkout.
Where historically one needed to independently evaluate various site metrics to make decisions to guide their website or online businesses, various tools now abound to evaluate and assess consumer activity and to gauge the quality of a visitor’s website experience to maximize conversions.
Marketing Automation: Growing Trend for 2017
Marketing Automation will continue to be another growing trend for 2017 in digital marketing. Email marketing automation in particular will become more sophisticated and targeted. Specifically, more web based companies will start to utilize email marketing automation and other digital marketing automation tools or will enhance their current campaigns.
Social Media Marketing will be another rising trend. However, we will see some cooling in specific areas like Facebook and Twitter with growth in other channels like Snapchat or Instagram. Marketing firms still know the value of social media and vigorously exploit these channels. Social media will continue to evolve and with it marketers will make decisions about how and where best to allocate resources in what has progressively become another paid channel.
Twitter in particular will see a marked decline in terms of popularity. The small bite sized packets of information have led to informational clutter. What was once fast and sexy has become too lean on information and, in some cases, bothersome. Individuals will be looking to other sources for content that is displayed less often and with more detail.
Digital marketing though social media will become more involved and vicarious than ever before. In particular, it’s not enough to just read some content after the fact about a topic or promotion, but rather to see this information in real time and to experience it on a more perceived first hand level. Other techniques to make this channel more compelling will be to offer live video rather than static images. To make social media meaningful, marketers will need to make campaigns through this channel more cogent and impactive to draw users in.
Content Marketing: The Most Important Trend for 2017
Content marketing may be the most important digital marketing trend for 2017. Many marketers understand that this channel allows them to “break through the noise” and know this is composed of various elements that when combined properly make a very puissant marketing combination.
These elements include rich content such as video, infographics, responsive web pages, online calculators or other useful tools for users, and personalization characteristics on website’s, with more dynamic content based on a visitors attributes or profile.
Marketing apps that make a user experience more interactive will also be a key part of digital marketing both now and for the coming years. Interactive content marketing will be a chief focus for marketers and I anticipate this will become a rapidly growing trend.
By Avid Amiri
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