The digital marketing landscape has constantly been in a flux, mostly due to changing technology. Social media, namely, has upended the advertising arena in the past decade. This new year is bringing more challenges to digital marketing, perhaps more so than others. Here’s a brief on what’s new and what’s changed in the digital marketing world in the shiny New Year:

Data Collection and Privacy Scandals are Dampening Social Media Marketing Efforts

The biggest stories last year revolved around social media, particularly Facebook, and the spread of misinformation. Facebook was also involved in a data breach scandal. The public distrust of the company grew following revelations that Facebook collected a lot more information from its users than it disclosed.

Other social media sites weren’t spared either. Twitter, too, was involved in scandals involving the spread of fake news. The most prominent tech companies in Silicon Valley have been called before regulatory and legislative authorities to explain problematic policies and failure to protect privacy rights.

All these scandals have made users more and more weary of using social media. Talk about quitting social media sites like Facebook is prevalent now. To be clear, people may protest Facebook, but the company remains the biggest social media platform in the world. What’s changed is not the actual interest in using the platform, but the enthusiasm for it.

Such news poses complications for companies that rely heavily on social media marketing. When users are disillusioned with a platform like Facebook, how could a business reach consumers through it?

Social medial marketing cannot go on as usual in the times of fake news. Brands that rely heavily on these platforms should expect to revamp the strategy in the coming months. Mainly, posts would need to be highly accurate, and any links shared would need to come from authoritative sources. It’s recommended to use a professional SEO agency to optimise social media posts and navigate new challenges.

Authority Optimisation is Suddenly Very Hip

This point refers to the social media scandals mentioned above. Let’s get to the point straight away—modern consumers are increasingly becoming suspicious of information posted online. They are not likely to trust just any marketing material online. Therefore, the coolest thing right now is the accuracy and credibility of marketing content.

Accuracy of content is important to both users and search engine algorithm. Authority, in terms of SEO, refers to just how credible a web page is when it comes to information presented there. Users would want the information to be truthful. For search engines, two things count: accuracy and relevance.

When a search is initiated, the algorithms crawls for websites with the most relevant information that matches the user’s intent. This refers to things like having the right keyword or link. But now the search doesn’t end there. Algorithms also want to know how authoritative a site is to present such information.

Increasing authority is thus an important aspect of optimising for online searches. Things like bad links on your site would hinder authority optimisation. Digital marketers would have to seriously think about authority in the future.

The Focus is Back on the Consumer…as a Human Being 

Marketing as always been a consumer first affair. This year, there’s a change though. Instead of considering consumers as always-ready buying machines, brands are rethinking them as human being (so novel). That is to say, brands are focusing on what consumers want as real people, instead of what they want as just buyers.

Most marketers would have already noticed the slew of socially conscious ads appearing in a highly politically divisive era. Nike for example, stood up for civil rights with a major ad campaign featuring the NFL star Colin Kapernick. Some notable efforts have backfired, particularly with Pepsi’s ad appropriating political protest.

Don’t expect the trend to change. Digital marketing efforts are no longer just confined to churning out promotional messages. There are several notable reasons driving this humanistic branding approach. First, there’s actual interest on part of the consumer for ethical and socially conscientious products.

Secondly, social media platforms are dominated by “stories” now, rather than individual posts. Bland ads don’t convert into great Instagram stories. Having a brand purpose certainly helps marketers craft these stories. Once a brand has chosen a purpose, it’s easy to incorporate that message into several campaigns, effectively driving the message home.

In the future, digital marketing is likely to focus heavily on such purposeful techniques, so brand should brace themselves.

All in all, digital marketing landscape is fundamentally changing largely because of privacy issues and suspicious consumers. These trends are likely to continue into 2019 and beyond, so marketers should be prepared to tread the new landscape.

 



 

Tags: