We know, 2020 predicted marketing trends have been done to death over the past few weeks. BUT, hear us out here…
Our team of marketers expertly analyse trends, their impact and predict what’s to come 6 months ahead of schedule. We don’t just listen to what our favourite influencer has predicted for the year ahead and decide to run with it, shout about it on social media (or copy and paste) and take it as bible because it simply sounds awesome.
Our predictions are based on facts, each brought to you by a member of our team. So, if you’re down for the ride, keep reading.
Email marketing will make a comeback
Since WhatsApp stopped mass broadcasting on December 13th (it’s still a sore subject, I’m sorry), I believe that brands will simply have to revert back to email marketing to directly communicate with their people.
And no, I’m not talking about bulk sending your latest 20% off discount to your whole email database, or pushing bog-standard promotional material that I simply send straight to junk. This decade has been a year of growth online for businesses globally. Digital marketing levelled the playing field and allowed small businesses to disrupt the market like never before, but with this came an avalanche of awful marketing messages, practice and content for consumers to sift through in their inbox, forcing them to put their bull-blinkers on to digest the messages that actually matter.
To get back to my point – I’m talking about real messages, expertly segmented and sequenced to drive conversion, build connections and increase brand awareness.
Brands can do this by segmenting their email list by interests, historic purchases, abandoned baskets, behavioural segmentation, loyalty – I could go on, but I will spare you the details. Then, using these lists, sending relevant information specifically targeted to the user. Whether that’s a monthly newsletter to brand advocates giving them an update on internal news to drive a connection with the brand, or sending an email to declare your love for your lapsed customers (and maybe a little discount to increase conversion).
Innocent are incredible at engaging their audience, whether that be through social media, on their website or email marketing. To benchmark what a good email is, sign up to their mailing list – I promise you will not regret it.
You see, it’s all about using great copywriting skills to engage your audience, expert segmentation to ensure you’re sending it to the right people at the right time, and a flavour of creativity – if you need the recipe, hit me up.
Oh and PSA: simply adding a name to the beginning of an email is NOT personalisation.
Callie O’Grady, Digital Account Executive
Shoppable social to take off
In 2020 Instagram will be 10 years old and the platform’s rise since its buy out from Facebook has been phenomenal. It’s already seen off the threat of Vine by introducing videos, kept Snapchat at bay with Instagram Stories and is now taking aim at the hotly emerging app TikTok with its Reels feature.
This all points to Instagram becoming almost like a catch-all social media platform and one that influencers and advertisers are already benefiting from.
For merchants, 2020 represents an opportunity for increased revenue on a growing platform that is now rolling out shoppable posts and provides countless opportunities for user generated content that can be used across multiple channels.
What’s more, Instagram is beta testing a new feature that will allow brands to add AR effects to their product pages, transforming the social shopping experience like never before. Ray Bans was one of the first brands to roll out the feature, allowing their customers to try on their range of sunglasses before purchasing.
After several years of gradual growth, AR is now starting to pick up pace and see more widespread usage. According to eMarketer, 77.7 million people will use AR at least once a month by 2020.
Followers are becoming increasingly more comfortable seeing brands on their social feeds, combining this with trusted influencers and social media platforms with easier eCommerce features, 2020 could see a huge boom in shoppable social.
Chris Munday, Digital Account Manager
E-A-T for SEO
This is a term coined and introduced to marketing and SEO specialists by Google in 2019, in which I think 2020 will see this area grow exponentially.
What is E-A-T?
E-A-T stands for expertise, authority, and trust. These are 3 factors that Google uses to measure how much trust it should place in a brand or website.
Google wants experts to produce authority content that users can trust. One example is on medical websites; Google would rather content to be written by a medical professional rather than by a freelancer.
By considering E-A-T when producing content, Google will start to reward your website in search engine results pages (SERPs), as it believes that providing such content will ultimately improve the overall user-experience on your website.
There are many other future trend predictions I could have chosen, such as visual search, or the continued rise of voice search. But, as they say, content is king. The core focus should be on producing high-quality content that provides an answer to the users’ needs.
Lee Bagley-Bramwell, SEO Specialist
The rise of conversational marketing
I think we’ll see more brands use conversational marketing in 2020 to engage with their customers in real-time, meaning conversations should happen whenever the customer prefers.
Historically, conversational marketing has been in the form of a live chat or live phone support, but this is quickly moving towards chatbots and AI to provide quick and easy communication.
Consumers expect quick responses to their queries, otherwise, they’ll go somewhere else. 42% of people expect an immediate response (within 5 seconds), and 36% expect a response within 5 minutes — 2019 State of Conversational Marketing.
In the age of the internet, we have accommodated to a fast-paced living style which conflicts with more traditional marketing channels that tell customers what they need to know, but not always when they need it. For instance, a customer can start a conversation whenever they like, but companies can’t always finish the conversation when the customer would like. This can be frustrating for the customer, especially when they need a quick answer to a question.
In 2020, we expect to see more and more companies using conversational marketing tools to meet the needs of their customers, and keep up with digital marketing trends.
Amy Lyle, Digital Account Executive
…whilst there have been many changes throughout the decade, we believe that somewhere down the line, some marketers have lost sight of the foundations of brand building – the consumer.
Yes, your ultra-cool campaign looks great. But does it convert? Does it inspire your customers? Make them sad, happy or provoke thought?
If you answer is no, then don’t hop onto the marketing trends of 2020. Instead, go back to the drawing board and understand your customer, their pain points, what makes them, them. Sorry, but you’ll thank us later.