As 2014 grows closer, it’s time to take a look at where you should be investing your marketing budget for the next year.
Via Sydney startup DesignCrowd, here are five trends you need to budget for with the world growing more digital by the day.
- Visually Innovative & Branded Content
With Google’s crackdown with recent algorithms like Penguin, businesses have been forced to take another look at their content strategies.
In 2014, content will need to become more visually interesting and innovative; visual content like videos, images, infographics and images are taking over text-based deliverables like blogs and articles.
Partnering with graphic designers, video producers, photographers and other providers sooner rather than later is a great way to get ahead and ensure you’re ready to “content compete” in the coming year.
- Real-Time Marketing
Both social media and the flood of mobile devices have revolutionised the concept of real-time marketing and timely message delivering.
Oreo obviously got it right with its “you can still dunk in the dark” tweet when a blackout occurred during the American super bowl. The brand received 15,000 re-tweets, 8,000 new followers and upped its Instagram interaction significantly.
What businesses can learn from this wildly successful cookie campaign is that being prepared to leverage marketing opportunities like this and deliver punchy, relevant messages at the right time in 2014 is going to be critical.
- Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Ever since Google removed specific search data from Google Analytics and changed its service to “Not Provided”, many businesses have found themselves left a little in the search dark (with data for only the top 2,000 searches, for the past 90 days).
As a result, many have turned towards PPC advertising to both fuel their marketing campaigns and stay on top of their search terms, allowing them to continue segmenting their audience based on key terms and search behaviour.
In 2014, quality PPC will become a huge trend, with Social Times predicting that PPC marketers will increase their budgets by 72% in 2014.
This means lots of opportunity for you to ride the wave if you invest right and run your campaign properly and determine how your PPC campaign will fit in with your overall strategy.
- Short-form Social Media Engagement
“Consumers who engage with brands via social media demonstrate a deeper emotional commitment to those brands and spend 20 to 40 percent more than other customers,” writes Ann Hadley from Entrepreneur.com.
Social media can work miracles for your brand, from driving your web traffic and conversions to creating long-term loyalty.
Many are predicting that Twitter will dominate over Facebook in 2014, particularly as real-time marketing becomes more significant. Investing in your social media presence on short-form platforms like Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, Vine and YouTube will be crucial.
- Mobile & Small Devices
Isn’t this already a trend, you say? It sure is. Mobiles and tablets have amazingly changed the way we view and market content – and the trend is only going to get bigger.
Ensuring your start-up brand is small device-friendly in 2014 will be critical. This post on Social Media Today, for instance, discusses how vital mobile is becoming for the travel industry, not only in regards to marketing and advertising, but also in relation to things like buying, making bookings and for check-in processes.
These trends, amongst others, are coming fast and planning your 2014 movements is essential before the New Year arrives.
Startups, in particular, will need to focus on visually entertaining and branded content, get on top of real-time marketing and social media, utilise the benefits of PPC and make sure you ready for mobile action.
All the best for the new year!
Jo Sabin is the marketing manager at DesignCrowd.