So we’re almost a month into the New Year and the crystal balls are out to predict what’s going to be the hot online marketing trends of 2014!
We’ve combined some of our own tips, along with some other leading experts from the UK, to give you a top ten of what to concentrate on during 2014 to boost your business’s marketing:
- There’s now no excuse for not having a mobile website – it’s now expected from visitors! A recent survey of marketers put improving the mobile experience as the number one priority for 2014. It’s no surprise considering mobile devices now make up a huge proportion of visitors! Some are predicting they’ll be more mobile visits in 2015 than desktop visits!
- Social media will continue to be an important channel for businesses, but become even harder to get noticed in the social streams (e.g. this week’s Facebook announcement that text-only Page updates will get less visibility!).
- With so many online channels now available (email, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, etc), having consistency across these different channels is now the key challenge. Marketers will need to recognise that there’s not one single ideal method and therefore several channels will need to have their attention.
- Rich media is gaining importance. Videos and interactive content can help you get noticed amongst the crowd.
- Personalisation and targeting is seen as the key this year, moving away from generic send-to-all messages. This is especially important considering loyalty with brands is much weaker in the online world. Think of your audience as smaller communities or targeted groups. Listen closely to their needs and interests when targeting your content.
- Social listening will become more important. Don’t just broadcast on the social networks, but listen to what’s being said and get actively involved in ongoing discussions, especially with those key influencers in your sector.
- Email is still a key marketing method, but it’s not as easy as it was in the past. Take, for example, Gmail, with the tab interface introduced in 2013 – which separates marketing emails from people’s high priority messages. Also, a significant proportion of personal communication is now mostly done via social networks rather than email, meaning people check their email accounts less often.
- High quality content will be fundamental to online success and getting found it search engines. Spammy content is out – search engines have got a lot more sophisticated in filtering out junk and users just aren’t interested!
- If you’re not on Google+, then you’re missing out! Not only can you stand out better on Google’s result pages, but there’s also some very active communities on there that you can get involved in. Can’t find a community in your area? Set one up and be an innovator – the Google+ community will only grow!
- Flat designs are the new fashion! Apple did it with the iPhone. Microsoft did it with Windows 8. Websites are now being designed with clean edges, bright blocks of colour, two-dimensional illustrations, using lots of space, etc. Basically, it’s all about simplicity. See some of our web designs in our portfolio to see how things are changing…
(2) Precise: What will be the hot social media trend in 2014
Mike is the founding director of Primary Image. He specialises in the WordPress website platform and speaks regularly at national web design conferences. Mike became a member (MCIPR) of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations in 2015. Outside of work, his interests include photography and politics.