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2015 Just Around the Corner: So What’s the Skinny on Digital Marketing Trends?

Quality content. Content marketing. Mobile-friendly content. Ad retargeting.

Scores of pundits and prognosticators awake and arise this time of year from their marketing crypts to make predictions, outline scenarios on what they see as hot digital marketing trends for the upcoming year. And we see a lot of those aforementioned terms – and others – you know what some of them are – year-after-year, being bandied about and re-purposed.

To use some pirate vernacular, “arrrggggghhhhhh!”

All good-intentioned, most impart a lot of useful info-nuggets but it’s easy to get lost in the morass.

So is there anything really interesting that might help drive awareness of products/services, and ultimately sales next year?

Yup.

Internet Retailer recently did a search marketing survey (full results being published in November) from mid-September to mid-October encompassing responses from 95 participants; about two-thirds identified themselves as working for web-only retailers.

Some interesting survey snippets:

• 46.2% reported increased traffic to their e-commerce sites over the past year through natural, or organic search;

• 32.9% generated at least half of their online sales through their paid search and organic search programs combined;

• 40.3% said their search marketing budgets increased over the past year;

• 53.3% said they would increase their pay-per-click search spending next year.

So the fight for top rankings via natural search will continue to gain traction.

Flip side of that, as reported by Lizetta Staplefoote in Entrepreneur Magazine, is that paid placements are not going away. Staplefoote said that changes to the Facebook algorithm in 2013 resulted in a 44% decrease in non-sponsored brand content in users’ newsfeed.

“LinkedIn, Twitter, and even Pinterest now offer sponsored content placements and ads that promise specific reach. The days of free reach are over. If you don’t pay, your followers very likely won’t see anything your doing in the social realm,” said Staplefoote.

Staplefoote added that another ’15 marketing trend to watch is that marketing automation tools will change the way you play. B2B businesses, particularly technology companies, have long paved the way in using marketing automation tools.

“However, many businesses have struggled to integrate their existing tools into a single system to take advantage of all the bells and whistles automation systems offer. For those who have made the leap, according to research from the Aberdeen Group, using marketing automation can increase conversion rates by over 50 percent,” noted Staplefoote.

Lastly, we’re also seeing executive titles morph and/or change. McKinsey & Company predicts there will be a 40 percent projected growth in global data generated per year versus only a five percent grow in global IT spending. And as Big Data continues to have a greater impact on e-commerce, New Jersey-based digital marketing agency Lion Five Studios says the relationship between the Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) will become even more important:

“The CIO can no longer work in a vacuum…with IT budgets going outside of IT, the new role of the Chief Digital Officer (CDO) is starting to emerge and this trend will only increase as companies place a strategic emphasis on digital content,” noted the studio.

To quote Arte Johnson, best known for his portrayal of a German soldier on Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In, “verrrrry interesting.”

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Photo courtesy of: iMedia Connection

Originally published on: iMedia Connection

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