Top 7 digital marketing trends B2B enterprises should be focusing on in 2020
Learn what digital marketing trends you need to be focusing on next year.
Frequent updates to search engine algorithms are changing the way we approach Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). The rise of virtual and augmented reality is giving businesses more ways to interact with customers. Artificial intelligence and machine learning are automating marketing at every stage of the funnel. With the fast pace of modern technology, it’s hardly surprising that the world of marketing and customer experience is evolving at breakneck speed.
With a new decade approaching, it’s time to brace for yet more exciting developments. Here are seven of the most important:
1. Voice Search
Voice search is nothing new, but recent years have seen it evolve from a quirky novelty to the new standard in an internet search. A recent study by ComScore predicted that voice will account for about half of all online search queries (source). Virtual assistants like Apple Siri, Amazon Alexa, and Microsoft Cortana and now standard in many modern devices and they’re redefining the way people interact with the web.
Of course, people tend to speak differently from the way they write. That’s one of the reasons Google has moved away from keyword-based ranking factors in recent years to focus more on user intent instead. Optimising for voice-powered search requires marketing teams to pay attention to longer sentences typically used in conversational language. Also, many voice queries are questions, so it makes sense to develop content that provides answers.
2. Page Speed
When it comes to getting people’s attention, every second counts. That’s even truer in the age of instant gratification and choices aplenty. Studies show that a quarter of users will abandon a page if it takes more than four seconds to load (source). And when that happens, they’re not likely to return. Page performance is also an important trust signal, particularly in the B2B sector where it’s closely tied to professionalism.
Page speed has been important for a long time, but the challenges and solutions around it have changed substantially in more recent times. The rise of bandwidth-heavy mediums such as video and interactive media place an additional burden and poorly optimised ads can also hinder the user experience. Demands are only going to get higher, so optimising page speed should always play an integral role in your marketing tactics for 2020.
Most of the ads we see are completely irrelevant to us, despite the efforts put into personalising in marketing. And even when personalised advertising does factor in, we often end up seeing ads for things we’ve already purchased. Currently, only a handful of companies are getting personalisation right, most of them being major enterprises like Amazon.
Personalisation will continue to play a central role now that 79% of customers feel frustrated when the content they’re viewing isn’t relevant to them (source). A common reason for this is that many businesses focus too much on increasing visibility through things like SEO, rather than putting the user experience first. This is an even bigger problem for B2B, where relevance is a crucial signal for trust and authority.
4. Zero-Click Results
Remember when digital marketing revolved around getting to the number one position in the search results? Well, that’s no longer the top goal. Today, the top spot is position zero, where your brand, product or service appears in the rich snippet at the top of the search results. This is known as a zero-click result, where users can get the information they’re looking for without having to leave Google.
Zero-click search results aren’t about keywords they’re about intent. A user asks a question, and Google delivers the answer right in front of them. That’s why zero-click results are often the only ones people will pay attention to. With more than 50% of Google searches resulting in no clicks, the value of keyword-based optimisation continues to drop (source). Instead, marketers should focus more on providing insightful, actionable content.
5. Interactive Content
The adage ‘content is king’ will continue to apply as much as it does today. But there’s a lot more to web content than written forms like blog posts and B2B formats like whitepapers and case studies. Video-based marketing has become enormously popular but emerging technologies have ushered in a whole range of new formats, including, interactive ones like shoppable posts, virtual reality, and 360-degree video.
With 91% of customers (source) now wanting more interactive content, it’s imperative that businesses diversify their content strategies to incorporate things like augmented and virtual reality. These technologies are no longer just for consumers. They have important implications in B2B too, whether it’s for showcasing complex products in immersive environments or giving interactive tours of workshop floors.
6. Business Intelligence Solutions
For many companies, Google Analytics is the go-to tool to track, monitor and analyse your digital marketing efforts. What makes Google Analytics even better is that it’s completely free.
However, digital marketing has become increasingly complex. Marketers now rely on multiple channels to generate revenue for their business, such as partnerships, remarketing, affiliate marketing, mobile and even voice search. These channels often have siloed data sets which makes it difficult to accurately measure what channels or combination of channels are performing.
Business intelligence solutions offer a central place where you can tie in all of your data and make better and actionable decisions to inform your company’s marketing strategy.
Next year you will see more companies adopting business intelligence solutions such as Amplitude or Google Data Studio.
Influencer marketing has grown from strength to strength over the last few years. Companies are spending 10 billion dollars a year on influencer marketing (source).
There’s no denying the power of a macro-influencer like Kim Kardashian or Kylie Jenner, with a large audience of loyal followers.
However, it is very expensive to employ celebrities or macro-influencers to help promote your business. For this reason, we will see more firms use smaller, micro-influencers, Or even “regular people” who have a decent following on social media and who hold their own influence, only over a smaller crowd.
Micro-influencers, are much more accessible, and with enough work, you can get similar results to a celebrity endorsement — improved brand awareness, more traffic to your website, and more engagement on social media — but at a much lower price.
In this article I have only touched upon seven marketing trends that I can see being most prevalent in 2020, however, in reality, there are many more trends that can help ensure your company’s success next year.
Some of the trends on this list are already a reality, and others you will need to start preparing for and implementing now.
So, let me know your thoughts regarding the above trends? Are there any trends that you feel are missing? please leave your comments below.
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