As we reach the half way mark for 2013, I wanted to bring you updates on the top marketing trends this year, and what you should be incorporating into your marketing mix to give your marketing a boost.
Here we go:
Social Business Has Risen.
You cannot afford to ignore social media. Consumers rely on social media to research and make buying decisions and for customer service issues. You need to leverage this with a strong presence on major social channels like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Google+ for real-time communication and service with your customers.
This should be the year that your small business becomes confident and adept at social media. Pick the specific platforms that make sense for your business: You should decide which platforms are the most worthwhile places to reach your audience, thus seeing greater returns as a result.
Responsive Web Design is Key.
Responsive web design provides an optimal viewing experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices from desktop computers and tablets to mobile smart phones.
With the astounding growth of mobile platforms and the incredible speed with which smart phones and tablets are being adopted, a responsive website is key to your online business success.
Mobile Has Arrived.
This follows the point above: Mobile Internet usage is rising exponentially, and it is here to stay. Mobile users are primed to outpace desktop users by 2014. This has critical implications for business. There are many ways to go mobile: Creating a responsive website (above), sending out mobile-optimized emails, undertaking mobile advertising, using Google Adwords for mobile and mobile SEO. Mobile Marketing should be an integrated part of your marketing mix.
Content Must Be Quality & Personalized.
You are generating top quality quality content. Take it step further, make it more personal. Content that exudes emotions and/or provides useful, surprisingly personal information increases social sharing and engagement. Take your product and your brand out of the story. Provide real value; don’t push your own agenda. You must be engaging, authentic and trustworthy; answer questions without the sales pitch.
SoLoMo Marketing Takes Center Stage.
SoLoMo is an acronym for Social-Local-Mobile, referring to a new marketing approach: The growing trend of targeting consumers based on their current location and designed to be shared via social networks.
Consumers are going SoLoMo: They shop socially, search locally and do it all on mobile devices.
If you run a brick and mortar business like a restaurant, bookstore, coffee shop or a hardware store, then SoLoMo is right for your business and an important marketing tactic.
Marketing Must be Integrated
Consumers are shopping on a variety of channels and devices, often simultaneously. With so much information coming at them, a dispersed presence and message is frustrating and ineffective. Marketing efforts should be consistent and complimentary on both mobile devices and desktops, online and offline. You must establish the same unified presence and message across your website, social media, mobile, email marketing and offline presece. This clear communication will generate familiarity and a positive user experience, attracting new prospects and staying more connected with existing customers. So as you create your marketing campaigns, remember to have a clear and concise theme that ties all of your channels together, from social media to your website to direct mail.
I hope you find this advice helpful and that you give your business its best shot at tremendous success in 2013 with these marketing trends.