2017 – like the 10 or 15 years before it – is looking like it’s going to be a big one in the digital marketing sphere. As technologies and strategies are developed, and conventional wisdom is challenged and changed, those who are looking to experience success with their marketing efforts will need to have their fingers on the pulse.
Small business owners are so often at a disadvantage when it comes to marketing. More often than not the owner will wear both the CEO and the CMO (chief marketing officer) hat, and inevitably the CMO headwear is the one that is neglected.
But for those small business owners who have resolved to make 2017 the year that they truly capitalise on all that today’s world of digital marketing has to offer, here are five trends that are set to explode this year.
Deeper Use of New Wave Social Platforms
Sure, you may have dabbled in Facebook advertising. It’s simple, targeted, and has the greatest reach of all the social platforms. But in 2017 your social media marketing potential won’t be realised until you capitalise on the wealth of other social media opportunities.
Snapchat and Instagram both offer simple, effective, and incredibly unique advertising opportunities. Using these platforms is particularly important for businesses who aim at a younger demographic (i.e. anyone under 30), as young Facebook users are turning to these newer networks to broadcast their lives, leaving Facebook as more of a “milestone” platform.
Content Becomes Denser
The speed at which users skim through their social feeds seems to be exponentially increasing. People on social media are developing quite the content filter, with a very particular style of content required to stop them in their tracks. Dense.
Dense content is content that delivers a lot of info in as little an amount of time or space as possible. Think a Facebook video that starts with a bang, or a blog post that delivers its key message, or seductively teases it, in just a few words. In 2017 dense content is king.
Smart Influencer Campaigns
Small businesses may think that influencer marketing is best left to the big end of town; let them pay an Instagram celebrity an inordinate amount of cash for a perfectly natural photo of them in a new pair of shoes or ingesting a game-changing refreshment, right?
While influencer marketing may usually be a little out of a small business owner’s comfort zone, it more than makes up for that fact in effectiveness. If you’re smart with your choice of influencer you could gain access to some ultra-relevant eyes for not much money at all. Search for social media influencers that seem to match your brand, and then make contact with those that boast a few thousand followers.
Start small, and if your initial campaign is effective, think seriously about investing in an influencer with a more serious followership.
Live Streaming Your Small Business’ Story
In 2016 live streaming introduced itself to the world. In 2017 live streaming could become a cornerstone of any business’s digital marketing efforts.
Snapchat’s live stories generate between 10 and 20 million views per day. People will watch a Facebook Live clip for 3x longer than they will a regular clip. With stats like that, utilising live video in your marketing efforts is a no-brainer. Try giving your audience a behind the scenes look at how your business runs. Humanise your company by introducing team members to the online world. Tell your brand’s story. The possibilities of live streaming are limited only by your imagination.
Try giving your audience a behind the scenes look at how your business runs. Humanise your company by introducing team members to the online world. Tell your brand’s story. The possibilities of live streaming are limited only by your imagination.
Hyper-Targeting Produces the Best Results
Where traditional advertising mediums effectively shout your message out into the ether in the hope that someone relevant will hear it, digital marketing allows you to target your audience in an incredibly specific way. Whether you use Google AdWords, social media or simple banner ads, most online marketing services will offer the sort of hyper-targeting that ensures that you get the very best bang for your advertising buck.
But all that being said, trends come and trends go. More than any of the particulars of advertising in 2017, a small business owner must first prioritise marketing process as a whole. Once you’ve committed to donning that dusty CMO cap, you can then worry about exactly how your 2017 small business marketing strategy will play out.