Getting a Jump Start for Marketing Your Business in 2018

It’s that time again. Time to take a look at your marketing program from 2017 and create a plan for 2018. One of the things we do with our Pick Your Own Marketing Plan clients is meet with them in November or December to look at any change they may want to do for 2018. We discussed their goals and plans for growth? We review what is currently working and tweak what may not be working or needs improvement.

One of the tasks I do to prepare for these meetings is get a feel for what others may be saying about marketing trends for the new year. Here is a preview of what’s trending for 2018:

Expiring Content

One that I hope becomes a trend on all social media channels is the option to expire content. For those on Snapchat, it already happens. There is so much noise out there and old content. Imagine being able to choose what you want to save. I know, for me, past event notifications would be perfect to expire with the exception of the photos from the events. How about you? What would you like to see removed from those things you post?

Live Streaming Videos

Video was the major trend in 2016. 2017 saw more social media channels specialized in live streaming videos. In 2018 live streaming videos will continue to become more fine tuned. Last year at this time I really liked Periscope. Then I began to experience Facebook Live. Besides some of the glitches with Facebook Live, I have to admit it is lots of fun to not only use, but also to experience.

You have to Pay to Play

Way back when the internet was a baby, it was free to market your business on social media channels like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Now, with all the algorithms in place to determine when your posts will be seen, it’s now more difficult for your posts to be seen without investing in boosts and ads. Yes, social media is and will become part of your paid marketing expenses. Plan on it!!!! What I find clients frustrated about is how to manage this new marketing investment, when to continue and when to pause. To explain what I mean by this, recently, we had an experience with a Facebook Boost for a local fundraising event. We wanted to sell tickets for the event on Facebook. We decided to spend $50 to boost the event. Our boost was set to sell tickets for 12 days to fans and friends of fans within a 50 mile radius of where the event was being held. The boost began. Day one it reached 1,000 people and not one ticket purchased. Day two it reached another 1,000 people and again no tickets purchased and day three was the same scenario. Most people set their boosts and just leave things ride. Not me, the goal is to sell tickets. By the third day there should have been ticket sales. So, what did we do? Paused the current boost and researched the organic reach of our posts to see which ones were doing well on their own. I choose one, took the remaining amount of money and applied it to this new boost. What happened is what we wanted to have happen with the initial boost. Ticket sales kicked in the very first day and continued. The rule is never put your Facebook marketing on autopilot.

Artificial Intelligence

Recently, I was introduced to artificial intelligence when discussing online advertising through banner ads with some of our publisher’s websites. Imagine having a computer provide the current stats for your favorite major league teams. No, maybe you don’t even need to imagine that because it is always happening. Yes, artificial intelligence is around us. We just take it for granted. Here’s a great example: You post a photo of your friends on Facebook and go to tag the photo. Well look at that, their faces on the photo are already tagged because of facial recognition. You didn’t tag them, artificial intelligence did it. Pretty scary!!! There are more examples I’m sure you can come up with on your own which are delivered to your inbox from LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest. They learn about you and your interests to deliver exactly what you want to receive.

Text Messaging Increases

The use of text messages will continue to grow as more and more people opt in to accepting them. How many of you already accept reminders to doctor’s appointments? Text messaging will begin to expand beyond the obvious to include payment reminders, alerts, and offers. Does your business or organization entertain the masses? You have a great opportunity to send text messages to your fans to announce competitions, sell tickets for concerts and events, and announce surveys. Like email marketing, text messaging can only be sent with permission from the individual receiving your messages.

Email Marketing Continues To Be Effective

Keep your emails simple. The evolution of emails has gone from multiple columns with a heavy slant on graphics to one thought, one graphic, one call to action, one column emails with everything above the crease. Why? You compete with the multitude of emails in the inbox. Your subject line may be the only key to your email being read. Create a reason for your email to be opened. Segmenting your email lists is key. With less is more, you need to make sure the audience wants to receive the email.

With these trends in mind for 2018, we’ll be discussing how to implement these marketing changes and ideas into our client’s monthly marketing plans. We hope you do the same for your business.