‘Tis the season to make bold statements about how marketing is going to change and evolve over the coming year. But rather than predict the predictable, and show how ‘down with the kids’ I am, my take on the year ahead is based on how marketing might actually work for, or effect your everyday business (unless of course you’re a disrupter who might want to stop reading now!).
1.What will we see less of in 2018?
Well, it is certainly proving harder to achieve results with organic search as most platforms, from Google to Facebook move their business models over to paid for search. I still believe social media advertising, particularly for local and niche businesses, is excellent value for money so make hay this year as it won’t last for ever.
2. The demise of marketing automation
I hope marketing automation will start to phase out as both (Business to Consumer) B2C and B2B (Business to Business) brands start to recognise it for what it is! We have talked about personalisation for a decade or more and brands need to live up to customer expectations in 2018.
3. Don’t jump on the bandwagon
There will, without doubt be another mass of new platforms and social channels launched in 2018; my advice, concentrate on one or two which work well for you and ignore the rest, at least until you have a reason not to!
4. Beware of buzzwords
The bandwagon also applies to the plethora of buzzwords being bandied around – AI, storytellers and Blockchain are all up there for any agency wanting to appear ‘on-trend’. When someone can tell me what AI offers for the majority of businesses (in the marketing capacity) then I will fall on my sword but until then…
A storyteller is just a new term for a copywriter (enough said) and Blockchain, I’m pretty sure that was a quiz in 1980’s, one that’s been given a recent reboot (like so many others!), in fact, that quiz show might prove more valuable to your business!
5. Basic principles
My hope for this year is that marketing professionals get back to basics, employing skills and techniques based on years’ of experience and embracing new platforms and media, only when relevant.
Marketing has, and always will be a science not an art. Of course, ‘pretty’ brochures and websites are a result of that science but please let’s realise, in order to be taken seriously and stay accountable we need professionally trained marketers who can take a view on overall budgets, strategy and planning.
Marketing at its best is the ‘customers voice within a business’; someone who understands the market, a product or service and who communicates that message to the right audience, effectively.