As we begin to close out another year, it’s easy to see the worlds of digital and inbound marketing have grown tremendously yet again. Not only have there been changes to buyers journeys, but also with how people seek out information and their engagement levels online. Just like in any field, inbound marketing will continue to evolve and there will be some trends to watch and some that will fade away in 2015. By knowing these emerging trends, you’ll be able to adjust your business’s tactics accordingly and have your inbound marketing strategies flourish into the new year and beyond.
1. Content marketing will be bigger and better than ever
As most of us already know, one of the main ways that businesses are establishing authority and gaining trust with website visitors is consistently creating valuable content through a variety of social channels. This builds rapport with your audience and develops a loyal following. Great content not only promotes brand awareness, but also builds your business a positive reputation. According to B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks report, 93 percent of B2B marketers used content marketing in 2014 and 42% considered their strategy to be effective (up from 36 percent in 2013). High quality and relevant content will continue to soar as one of the most successful marketing tactics and it will be rewarded by Google – a two birds with one stone strategy.
2. SEO + Social Media + Content = Greatness
Although SEO and content marketing will continue to coexist as two separate, but intertwined subjects, they will rely on each other and social media for success. Businesses that choose not to invest in a solid content strategy will see that their SEO tactics are ineffective and may even be hurting them in terms of search visibility. Since content marketing is now the primary influencer of search visibility, social sharing will also start to play an important role. It makes sense that the more an article, blog, or product review page is shared, the higher quality it is and therefore should be at the top of search engine page results. The goal of Google and inbound marketers is to provide users with the most relevant content possible, so it makes sense that social shares should contribute to search results ranking. Businesses will continue to blend the use of these three disciplines and increasingly use to social media to gain brand recognition, brand authority, and improve customer insights.
3. More money and targeting in online ads
Ad retargeting is a popular tactic where browser cookies are used to track the websites that users visit. Once a user navigates away from a site, the products they viewed will be shown to them again in advertisements across different websites or social networks. Ad retargeting works to increase the overall conversion rate by reminding users of the products they previously viewed. Due to the success of these types of ads, you can expect a surge of them throughout 2015. Another type of online ad you’ll see increasing is Facebook ads. With Facebook significantly decreasing organic reach and what types of posts are seen in people’s newsfeeds, paid advertising will increase. Since businesses have seen positive results from an investment in social media, like elevated exposure and traffic, paid social ads will be one of the only ways to maintain these outcomes. Twitter has new advertising options that are currently in beta and focus on specific actions such as website clicks, app downloads, and email opt-ins. Businesses will likely invest in these types of object-based campaigns once they are live.
4. Mobile optimization will continue to rise
As inbound marketers we know mobile optimization is key, but in 2015 it will be evolving even further. Forbes says that by 2017, 87 percent of connected device sales will be tablets and smartphones. Not only should your business be focusing on having a responsive site or mobile app, but you’ll also need to give consideration to mobile-optimized content and social media marketing. Google has also previously mentioned that mobile usability is relevant for optimal search results. Therefore in 2015, mobile will be incorporated in all areas of digital marketing strategies. Spending for mobile ads will also grow and become valuable because of the length of time and context in which people use their mobile devices.
5. Brands will seek to humanize
They should already be doing this! However, more brands will be jumping on the human-to-human marketing bandwagon. Brands are realizing their consumers wish to interact with other humans, not with businesses or corporate-sounding jargon. Social media is the perfect platform to connect with your audience on a human level. Humanizing your marketing will lead to higher conversion rates, increased brand loyalty, faster audience growth, and happier customers. Showing that your business is human will open the door to a wonderful world of benefits and absolutely no drawbacks.
As we close out 2014 and get ready to ring in a brand new year, we can truly see just how far inbound marketing has come. The exciting part is also seeing where it will go. As consumers become more active online, we as inbound marketers must adapt to their shopping and buying habits. As inbound marketing evolves, the one thing that stays the same is the human race we market to. Their thirst for knowledge is a human experience and it’s only fitting that we give our audience the type of solution they seek.
Read more at http://www.business2community.com/inbound-marketing/top-5-inbound-marketing-trends-watch-2015-01109385#QM7qUz5WIloDIEiJ.99