Digital marketing is not as fickle as it used to be, but it still has its moments. In 2018, there are already clear changes coming, and that means that some of the ‘ways’ agencies are used to doing things could be disappearing. We think some of the trends we have been used to are on the way out in 2018. We’re going to focus on six in this post.
If you’re doing this kind of stuff now for your clients, you may want to sit back and reassess. Okay, the white paper may be a marketing tool that will never truly die out, but we can’t see it being a hot topic in 2018. Things are so quick and ‘instant’ in social media that brands may want to look at other ways in which they can build expertise and authority.
Brands are expected to be experts in what they do, and producing a white paper to hawk around the Internet isn’t the first thing they are called on to provide. And when it comes to eBooks, if these are going to be created by brands, they have to be short and snappy.
The days of the long ‘expert’ eBook as the main driver for lead generation are dying out. And there are a hundred different ways to develop and disseminate information and build an audience now. Organic Facebook This has been on the cards for some time and we can quite easily imagine 2018 to bring the final death knell for anything like organic reach on the platform.
It is such a commercial platform now, and there is so much going on with Facebook that is essentially ‘paid’ that organic reach has very much come to an end. It’s been dying out since 2014, but it is clear that in 2018 it could well be further down than the 5-10% organic reach levels that brands are seeing now. We’re not geniuses, but that sounds pretty bad.
Text optimisation You would have to be truly delusional to think that huge blog posts with acres of text are the only way to go. As part of a wider strategy they are relevant, and if you do it for long enough they become essential. But they can no longer be seen to be valid as the only means of conveying information. And this has strong implications for SEO.
Just optimising the text, and only the text, on a site is definitely a sure-fire way to kill your rankings on search engines. The problem is that 2018 seems to be a year where that could make a brand irrelevant.
Optimisation has to be focused on the newer, more engaging content too if a brand is to make progress. The videos and the imagery now need to be optimised with the same level of work. As a simple warning, just look at how much search is becoming less text-dependent.
When people move towards voice search and even camera search in 2018, a text-based SEO strategy looks rather foolish. The solution is to prime your content on video and audio so that when people search they get the content quicker.
Your images need to come up more readily too, so essentially a whole new frontier of search is opening up. We reckon it will very much become the norm in 2018, so avoid focusing on text only. It’s a clear no-no.
Marketing Automation While some marketing automation is great in moderation, relying on it heavily makes a brand feel cold and inhuman. It is also quite easy to spot the automation aspect in ads and in contact (especially in bots, for example).
While technology will forge ahead in 2018, the brands that maintain that human touch, even in email campaigns (where it can be very easy to make a prospect or client feel like they are part of a campaign) will win out.
The year will make it very important to clients that they get that personal touch. If your clients are able to show that personal touch at least 50% of t