Leverage these Online Marketing Trends for the Rest of 2014

Digital marketing is a fluid and dynamic field, and it seems like every year the online marketing gurus come out with a new list of trends to look for and, ultimately, invest in if you really want to connect with online customers. On top of that, every time a new bit of mobile technology, software or social networking platform really takes hold, marketers rush to see how users are interacting pitch products and services to them.

We live in an age of digital innovation, and keeping up is difficult. While the fundamentals of marketing remain the same (i.e. sell benefits [not features], show [don’t tell] how your product can change customers’ lives. What changes is the way that we communicate these tried-and-true marketing messages. With that in mind, here are four current advertising trends that should inform your marketing initiatives for the remainder of 2014:

Online Marketing Trends 2014

Image Credit: onlinecrowd.com.au

1. Content is Bigger than Ever

There’s nothing new about content marketing, and gurus have been touting the “Content is King” rallying cry for decades. Bill Gates is often credited coining this phrase in an essay he wrote back in 1996, though this turn of phrase appears in articles older than that (see here the battle for online content by Scott Donaton). Regardless, there’s nothing new about our collective insistence that content reigns supreme.

What is new is, perhaps, the ever increasing size of content’s kingdom. In 2014, Internet marketers are pursuing more high-quality content than ever before. As search engine algorithms become more sophisticated, we are finding that those sites that actually provide compelling, high-quality content are reaping the rewards.

For the remainder of 2014, make a point of adding as much top-quality content to the company’s website as possible. This could be something as simple as more detailed and accurate product descriptions or something as lofty as a humanising image gallery of noteworthy employees or customers. These are just two ideas, of course; but in any event, create more content.

2. Increase Ad Re-Targeting Tactics

You may have noticed a few increasingly common situations in early 2014. Let’s suppose that yesterday you used your computer to check show times at cinemas in Melbourne this weekend. Now, every time go online, you keep seeing ads about the latest DVD or an upcoming blockbuster. That’s no accident; rather, it’s a finely tuned means of internet marketing in Melbourne. The advertiser has actually hired a third party to anonymously track your surfing behavior and show you ads accordingly.

This is known as re-targeting, and it hinges on the digital cookie. There is no sensitive data being exchanged. What’s really happening is, companies are keeping track of who has been to their website over the past 30 days or so and trying to follow-up with relevant ads in response. Regardless of whether you feel that the practice is unnerving or completely acceptable, it is worth pointing out that cookies are absolutely ubiquitous.

From an advertisers’ standpoint, refusing to track down your potential customers is just silly. With that in mind, consider getting in touch with an ad re-targeting service and adding this to your company’s repertoire for the rest of 2014.

3. Don’t Ignore Alternative Content

We’re going to give this a separate point from the above, though it’s certainly in the same vein of thought. Content has never been limited to mean only the written word. However, 2014 has begun to drive this point home. More and more alternative forms of content are growing in popularity.

For example, virtually every big of content on the Internet today is attached to a compelling and highly recognisable image. Likewise, infographics were still a relatively form of content two or three years ago, but now you can hardly visit any social networking stream without spotting at least one. With that in mind, take some time to consider alternative means through which you can tell the story of your company and its products.

4. Double Down on Mobile Users

Okay, so maybe it’s not fair to suggest that anyone was outright ignoring mobile (i.e. tablet and smart phone) users in the past. However, times are changing rapidly. Early in 2014, figures suggested that more people in the US are now accessing the web via mobile apps than through their PCs. The same was already true of citizens of some other countries, including China.

This is important for several reasons. First, advertising content needs to be mobile- friendly. This begins with responsive or adaptive websites that can fit stretch to fit a variety of screen sizes and resolutions. Beyond that, it’s also time to start investing in mobile app development, since this appears to be where consumers are now spending more of their time.

In short, if you don’t have a mobile strategy, it is high time to develop one. But even if you do have a strategy in place, 3Q 2014 could be a good time to revisit and re-evaluate it.

About the Author:

Amanda Bruce is a writer working on a freelance basis for Online Asset Partners, one of the leading providers of Google Analytics, search engine optimization, and internet marketing in Melbourne.

Follow  Amanda Bruce : Google Plus

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