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7 Upcoming Marketing Trends to Budget for in 2019

As marketers, this must be a busy time of the year, full of plans for 2019!

You must have had intense discussions with your marketing team and all the stakeholders involved on the sales and revenue data and numbers, where you missed the target and in which areas you exceeded.

These analyses give you realistic assessments of the marketing achievements and shortcomings. Based upon these, you draw the budgets for 2019.

As you reflect on the year gone by, have you assessed the opportunities and upcoming trends that 2019 offers to grow your bottom lines?

Here’s a solid 7 point list for you to consider before you finalize your marketing budget.

1)Content is the core around which marketing (and sales) revolve

Its true! Valuable content is (still) king!

Content will become so important that it will be the crux around which your marketing functions. By content we mean relevant, informative and highly personalized content that adds value to your customers’ lives. Right from targeting prospects to your business to all the stages in the conversion funnel, it plays a major role in how your brand value is perceived. This affects your leads, sales and profitability.

Take time and effort to create a content marketing plan that considers all touch-points between the customers, prospects and your own organization.

2)The benefits of Chatbots beyond offering customer service

With so much customers’ information being collected by the brands, customers are becoming more demanding. They expect personalized content and brand interactions across any touch-point with the brand.

Every day, there are many micro-moments being created as a result of the customer’s interaction with the brand and they want personalized content as per their requirements.

Chatbots fill this requirement nicely by offering information and solutions to the customers’ most frequently encountered problems and questions with the brands.

At the same time, chatbots collect a wealth of information on the customers and help marketing in gaining valuable insights. This helps in more personalized approach and refining your messaging.

In a research study, a staggering 73% marketers said that they know their audience better through their website analytics but a dismal 42% said that they use the audience conversations. Marketers should close this gap and use this missed opportunity by getting such information from chatbots.

3)Growth in alternative search formats

Some new trends emerging in the way audience search for content are the growth of voice searches. Another one is visual content after Google’s announcement of giving more prominence to visual content in searches.

So here lies the rise of alternative searches. It’s not that marketers are not responding to this trend. A study showed that use of image-based content increased by more than half and more than one-third marketers used audio-only content more.

Responding to the rise of alternative searches doesn't mean that you create various types of contents without thinking through the ways of how it will be found online.

In 2019, you need to decide what types of content are relevant to you and how can you ride the alternative search bandwagon.

4) Overlapping areas of Marketing and PR

Marketing and PR are different teams in an organization but brands are realizing that there will be more overlap in their functions as they share some common goals.

In recent years, the role of PR has evolved into a more dynamic and personalized one. It’s not about canned responses and templated messaging. The content produced by PR has to appeal to brands, customers and reporters. Personalized, engaging and helpful content is also the core of marketing. There lies the overlap.

Brands and organizations should me all efforts to bring these two functions into closer proximity so that they can work together and your customers derive more value.

5) More Importance to Security and Data Privacy

Who doesn't want online security and protection of information that that is shared with brands. But when we hear of so many examples of data breaches, hacks and leaking of personal information, then it does make us uncomfortable. Your audience has those same feelings.

Consumers are increasingly aware of the personal information that companies are collecting and the risks involved, should a data breach happen. As responsible marketers, customer’s security and data privacy should be of huge concern to any business.

A major initiative in this regard was taken in the General Data Protection Regulation in the EU in 2018. Businesses should put efforts to protect users’ data when they collect and store it. This helps in building trust that is so important for business growth.

6) Personalization and Authenticity in Marketing Communications

Nobody likes to be bombarded with irrelevant messages and emails from brands. Technology and machine learning have given access to so much information about consumers that creating personalized marketing communication should be very easy.

There’s already information overload and surely you don't want to add to the clutter. Technology has empowered you with valuable information that should only make marketers better communicators.

Derive valuable insights from the data and make hyper-targeted messaging that meets your audience’s expectations of authentic and helpful content.

7) Choose New Things Carefully

Just because some new trend or concept has worked for a business does not mean it will be suitable for yours too. The trick of approaching marketing is being selective with new techniques, understanding and implementing them. Monitoring and analysis are part and parcel of any new introductions.

Don't get in the race of adopting many things at one go. This only leaves you with abandoned projects, inconsistent messages and wastage of time. They do more harm than good.

Always keep your customer as the focus and exceptional brand experiences as the central theme in all your marketing endeavors.

Hopefully, your marketing budget for 2019 will account for these upcoming marketing trends as you don’t want any missed opportunities for growth.

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