Are you in the midst of planning your 2020 digital marketing?
These are the biggest digital marketing trends for 2020, according to Convince & Convert’s consulting team:
- Messaging Goes Mainstream
- Brands Need to Meet Consumers’ Continued Need for Immediate Information
- Standards Are Being Raised in Privacy and Digital Wellbeing
- Content Inclusivity Across Digital Touchpoints Is Gaining Momentum
- Teams Need to Become Fluent in Interpreting and Collecting Useful Data
- Gathering 1st Party Customer Data Is Becoming Increasingly Important
- Voice-Activated Content Will Increase in Popularity
- The Already Trendy Chatbot Will Get Trendier and Provide Even More Interactive Options
Messaging Goes Mainstream
While email will continue to be an important way for brands to communicate with customers, other modalities will see sharp increases in 2020, especially SMS and Messenger/WhatsApp. While these communication methods are already massively popular in other parts of the world, the United States and Canada will begin to catch up this year, as brands seek to boost open and interaction rates by changing communication vehicles.
The long-standing avoidance of using SMS because it’s “too invasive” is falling away, and the rumored merger or combination of Messenger and WhatsApp into a WeChat-style messaging powerhouse will be the catalysts for this trend. Already, DTC e-commerce brands are taking advantage of these opportunities, and more organizations will quickly follow, given that consumers are signaling a willingness (desire, even) to communicate outside of email and given that the technological complexity and cost are relatively modest.
Brands Need to Meet Consumers’ Continued Need for Immediate Information
The internet has given us the amazing ability to gain access to more information and data than ever before. Thanks to our beloved mobile devices, we can get that information anytime we want, no matter where we are or what we’re doing.
Unfortunately for brands, that means they now have to provide immediate information and answers to every customer question, anytime they want, no matter where they are or what they’re doing. That demand is only going to intensify in 2020, as seen by a recent Google report showing that “best” and “right now” mobile queries have grown by over 125% in the last two years, and “where to buy” and “near me” mobile queries have grown by over 200%.
Standards Are Being Raised in Privacy and Digital Wellbeing
Last year, people made 2.5 billion visits to their Google account pages where they can view or adjust how their ads are displayed. 1 in 3 Americans have taken steps to improve their digital well-being in the past year, and 80% said this had a positive impact on their overall wellbeing. YouTube has delivered over 1 billion “take a break” reminders since the feature was introduced last year.
In 2019, it became evident that user privacy, trust and well-being go hand-in-hand with effective advertising. To be successful, marketers need to work to win people’s trust by raising industry standards and providing more tools and insights to help them manage their digital wellbeing.
Content Inclusivity Across Digital Touchpoints Is Gaining Momentum
Making the web more inclusive and accessible is gaining momentum. Updated Web Content Accessibility Guidelines released in 2018 started to get real traction in the past year as web developers and UX designers began to move away from the “one-size-fits-all” mindset that has been pervasive until recently.
The WCAG standards are structured in four principles: Perceivable, Operable, Understandable and Robust. A framework that includes 13 guidelines fall within these principles. Though not explicitly, these guidelines are moving beyond websites to include additional content types, including the videos and graphics most commonly found on social media. Adding captions on all video content and descriptive captions as alt-text for images is already becoming commonplace for social media content creators — yet there are more steps to include for creating and publishing new social content that will be inclusive and accessible.
More than 285 million people in the world have visual impairments, and, in 2018, Instagram made improvements to make it easier for people with impairments to use the platform. Creating all content, whether on websites, email, social media and voice, to WCAG standards helps makes content more accessible to a wide range of people with disabilities. It also helps the older generations (and, truly, everyone) by making content more usable.
Teams Need to Become Fluent in Interpreting and Collecting Useful Data
As we continue to move towards a more trackable and measurable digital marketing environment, marketing teams have the opportunity to learn, understand and predict the behaviors of their audiences more accurately than ever. 81% of marketers expect the majority of their decisions will be data-driven by 2020, according to Gartner’s 2018 Marketing Analytics Survey. The disconnect is that many teams have found their skillsets misaligned with this new reality over the last several years.
As we move into 2020, the reality is that it is no longer optional for marketing teams to be good at understanding data. It is absolutely vital that all marketing teams become well-versed in data storytelling and interpretation.