Top digital marketing trends to leverage in 2018

Three-dimensional digital experiences

To date, companies have been creating two-dimensional consumer experiences on two-dimensional devices, such as mobile phones, tablets, and desktop computers. The next generation of consumer experiences will be three-dimensional, lived through our entire environment, not just our devices. Customer interactions will bridge the gap between online and offline. For the enterprise, this means leveraging data across all digital channels to seamlessly integrate with their consumer’s day-to-day. Say your customer happens to be walking by your bank branch and their calendar is free for the next 30 minutes. Your customer, whose mortgage is about to expire, would receive a notification that nudges them to set up an appointment with a mortgage specialist. That’s a 3D customer interaction.

Voice-activated marketing

As more and more IoT devices enter the market, from smart thermostats to Amazon buttons, consumers are becoming overwhelmed by the myriad of ways to access information. As a result, the market for voice-activated assistants, technologies that consolidate information into a single device, will grow in 2018. This year, smart speakers have a predicted revenue of $3.8 billion and 43.6 billion units sold[1].

So, how can marketers across industries leverage this seemingly complicated technology to stay competitive? Let’s take a look at how the financial sector has integrated their offerings into voice assistants. Santander allows customers to make bank payments using just their voices, and BMO, TD, and Capital One – just to name a few – have all integrated with Alexa to develop basic voice command services like “Alexa, what’s my bank balance?”. Rather than thinking of voice technology as yet another device you have to cater to, think of it as a great opportunity to connect with your customers in a new and more personal way. In fact, 41% of people who own a voice-activated speaker say it feels like talking to a friend or another person[2]. Leverage your data and intelligent assistants to explore new ways of engaging with your customers.

Predict, don’t search

For years now, marketers have segmented their audiences and tailored content to optimize their digital marketing campaigns. Delivering  content that their audiences would likely be interested in based on online behaviors like their search patterns allowed marketers to achieve higher conversion rates. But the era for search is almost over. Brands no longer have the luxury of assuming that consumers will be at their keyboard, searching for what they need. The next generation of consumers expects retailers to be able to – to a certain extent – predict their needs and deliver the right information on the right device, where and when they need it. With all the data we have about our customers through the emergence of IoT and the advancements in predictive intelligence, 2018 will be about the next generation of segmentation. We’ll know what our customers want without them having to tell us.


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