With a new year comes predictions for the year ahead. In every area people have been talking about what they think will happen over the next 12 months. We’ll leave the politics to the politicians, and stick with what we know! Here are our predictions for 2019 (with a bit of help from our friends):
1. Marketing will be more inclusive than ever.
Gone are the days of advertising focusing on your average white family with 2.4 children and a white picket fence; this year more than ever, we will see more diverse and inclusive advertising directed at the real people who make up this globe, rather than the small subsection that has historically been depicted. After all, if your product is designed to be used by anyone, why would you only show a middle class white man using it in your advertising? This article from Forbes brilliantly highlights specific trends in inclusion and diversity we can expect this year.
2. Voice search will be a priority.
We wrote about this last year; Google is really focusing on voice search at the moment and that should come as no surprise with the rise of things like Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. The wording and the way we search is different when we’re using voice search, and that’s something that will need to be factored into SEO strategies or we may just find that there are some new sites fighting their way to the top of the listings.
3. Search results will focus on intent.
Search engines are focused on understanding users’ intent – what were they hoping to find when they typed those particular words into the search bar? This article has some great examples of how people’s searches over the course of hours or even days will eventually lead to a purchase.
4. Use of influencers will change.
2018 was really the year of the online influencer – and of online influencer scandals. So many people became Instagram famous and leveraged their following to secure lucrative deals with brands. We used to look to A-list celebrities to tell us which brand was the best; now we look to social media influencers with hundreds of thousands of followers… but perhaps the tide is turning on this too? People are becoming wise to the idea that an influencer is essentially selling the attention of their followers to brands; we don’t trust online influencers in the way we once did. Yes, the likes of Kim Kardashian can still sell out a brand’s entire stock of a particular lipstick or weight loss lollipop (remember those?!) but she may be the last of a dying breed as people begin to demand more authenticity in the social accounts they follow. This year the way brands work with influencers will change as people search our more genuine collaboration. Check out this article on Campaign about shifts in influencer marketing.
5. No end in sight for Stories.
The Stories function on social apps has become more and more popular. Some would argue that the content on your Stories matters more than what you actually post in apps like Instagram these days. Mark Zuckerberg recently stated that he expects Facebook News Feed usage to decline, and the Facebook team are apparently focused on new features and ad products. And as we’ve seen for a number of years now, where Facebook leads the rest of us will follow. This article on Later talks specifically about Instagram marketing trends for the year ahead – the first point gives a lot of detail about Instagram Stories and ways to leverage them for your business.