Digital Marketing Trends to Watch out For in 2018

In 2017, Twitter added more characters, Instagram added stories to lure Snapchat users, and the President of the free world threatened to use his nukes against North Korea with the 280 characters given to him by Twitter. But these are not going to be the highlights of social media in 2018. In fact, digital marketing is going to be the real deal.

This year, more brands will try to expand their reach, create ads to get ahead of their competitors and social media is lying in wait to give them various options to accomplish these goals. However, only those who stay abreast of the trends will be able to stay ahead of the pack. Are you a digital marketer? Come let’s go on a ride together on digital marketing trends for the year.

Micro-Influencers

Statistics show that nearly 40% of Twitter users claimed to have made a purchase as a direct result of a social media influencer’s tweet.  The alternatives like paid searches, affiliate marketing, email marketing and content searches have given way for micro-influencers. Micro-influencers have also taken the place of celebrities which was the norm when it came to endorsing a product in the past. These social media influencers usually possess hundreds of thousands to millions of followers and have achieved a celebrity status in their own circles. With brands realising that micro-influencers deliver 11 times the ROI compared to traditional digital marketing, some have opted for this form of marketing. Mercedes-Benz, Nikon and SuperBowl have shifted to this form in the past year.  With this, you can attest to the fact that marketing through social media influencers is not just a trend in marketing but an emerging industry.

Augmented Reality

Augmented reality promises to be more prominent this year, as well as move beyond mobile gaming. There are already signs of social media platforms accommodating this new technology like the Pokemon Go buzz. Snapchat already has a provision for users to project animated versions of their images doing different things.

Brands can key into this to showcase their products in novel ways to their customers, like projecting how an item of furniture will fit in the house or how an accessory will look on the body. 

Mobile-Ready Content Will Drive Ads

The number of smartphone users in 2018 is expected to rise above 2.53 billion worldwide. This means marketing contents will reach more people with mobile phones due to its accessibility and portability. Already, people are turning to their smartphones to carry out tasks formerly left to their desktops such as online shopping, flight booking and other online transactions.

In 2018, many marketing contents will have to follow this trend of targeting mobile phone users. Social media channels will keep on adding new technologies such as providing users with augmented reality experiences, and social video content will only get more mobile-friendly.

Live Streaming as the New Way of Branding

Live streaming didn’t just happen, it has been around for quite some time. However, it is the use people and brands impose on it this year that is going to be new. The changing nature of this social media tool is a trend every digital marketer has to watch out for in 2018.

It will be interesting to see how politicians in Nigeria capitalise on these trends as election year approaches. We hope to see an innovative politician using the Facebook Live to engage voters in the coming elections. Politicians and brand managers could make use of this tool to generate greater organic reach.  With better smart phones come greater video recording and processing, and in this year, forward-moving brands will expand their reach if they incorporate live streaming into their monthly content plans.