Thanks to innovations like CRM and automation technology, the digital marketing space is expanding rapidly. Channels, platforms, and strategies that are incredibly popular today weren’t even a blip on the radar five years ago; while others have changed so much that they’re barely recognizable, and others have become obsolete. To be an effective digital marketer requires no shortage of adaptability and foresight, as today’s top trends can often become tomorrow’s forgotten fads in an already saturated market.
With that said, there are a few noteworthy strategies that marketers can expect to dominate the new year. Here are the 5 top digital marketing trends that we predict for 2020:
1. Chatbots will Become the Automated Concierge of the Customer Journey
Once considered an unnecessary luxury, chatbots are now essential components to the customer journey on a website. By programming helpful responses to common questions someone may have when they’re on your site, you can nurture and qualify leads without having to lift a finger. As chatbots become more sophisticated and incorporate more advanced elements of artificial intelligence, they’ll likely evolve to the point where they can fulfill key roles such as:
- Sales: Engage with leads, assist them with the sales process, and comprehend when to up-sell or cross-sell.
- Data analytics: Collating vital customer information during interactions with leads on a website.
2. Marketing will up the Personalization Ante
Gartner predicts that 90% of all online marketers will employ marketing personalization in some way next year, which should go a long way towards alleviating the frustration that 70% of consumers feel when content isn’t relevant to them. While we’re already seeing audiences filter out irrelevant content, relevant content that suits a particular need, want, or interest consistently grabs their attention. Here’s why:
- Consumers value personalization: According to Accenture, "91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands who recognize, remember, and provide them with relevant offers and recommendations."
- Prediction-powered AI: Artificial intelligence will arm marketers with the tools to not just comprehend our behavioral tics, but to understand how we behave before we even act.
3. Voice Search to Increase in Popularity
As consumers become more comfortable interacting with speech-enabled platforms like Alexa and Siri, voice search’s popularity will also continue to grow. Factor in the increasing sales of voice-enabled mobile devices and you begin to get an idea of just how much. In 2018 alone, there were over 1 billion voice searches every month, highlighting the growing demand for this channel. Healthcare marketers need to become early adopters or risk being left behind by equally tenacious peers.
4. Social Influencers to Grow in Authority
As trust in brands continues on its downward trend, businesses are understandably reticent to continue with irrelevant marketing bombardment for the sake of it. However, a solution lies in organic or micro-influencers, who are already brand ambassadors and have a reasonable amount of clout with their followers. There’s a fine balance between authentic content and superficial advertisement, but by forging a relationship with an influencer who’s both reputable and experienced in the industry, you can increase your brand’s line-of-sight across multiple channels.
5. Social Media to Become King of Advertising
Social media spend will surpass print for the first time, with a predicted $84 billion, in comparison to print (less than $69 billion). Social media’s monopoly on advertising isn’t expected to slow down anytime soon, and we expect it to eventually surpass all forms of traditional advertising in the coming years.
Audiences of traditional channels like print and broadcast television are consistently decreasing, as younger people embrace streaming services like Netflix and YouTube for video, and turn to the web for news and other miscellaneous information. The question “Why waste your money on traditional advertising when people spend on average over 3 hours a day on their phone?”, will become increasingly important when deciding where to spend your marketing budget in the future.
Don’t do the Heavy Lifting by Yourself
Staying on top of trends and adjusting your strategy accordingly can be difficult when you’re a healthcare marketing professional who wears many hats, and services just as many clients. Thankfully, specialist marketing agencies who can do the heavy lifting for you do exist (and are ready and willing to assist).
KBK Communications is a marketing agency that delivers services to the medical industry. Our team leverages over 50 years of experience in the healthcare industry to deliver marketing strategies that grow your leads and revenue. Reach out to our team to find out how we can help you harness the latest trends for better results in the medical sector.