Wouldn't it be nice to have a crystal ball that tells us exactly what to do? Of course it would. Sometimes, paying attention to important trends is the next best thing.
When we pay attention to what some of the massive companies out there are doing, it shines a light on what's possible. It helps us understand how consumers are adapting to modern marketing.
And it helps us make smart decisions.
Like understanding that social media platforms are focusing on revenue growth and how that affects brands large and small. (Keep reading to understand more).
Sure, you probably don't have the budget for the third one. Neither do I. But it's important to understand the trend and what it means for other businesses.
Who knows? Maybe you'll end up being the one who gets bought out.
Stranger things have happened (just this year).
Here are three leading edge marketing trends to pay attention to and adopt when possible:
Trend 1: Backlash against social platforms
As of this writing, YouTube megastar PewDiePie (aka Felix Kjellberg) has been extremely critical of YouTube over the past few months. Specifically, PewDiePie believes that YouTube’s algorithm changes are costing him traffic, which is hurting his advertising revenues and other sponsorship opportunities.
Honestly, the details don’t really matter. More and more social media influencers, as well as brands leveraging social media, are frustrated with YouTube, Facebook, and more, and their ongoing algorithm changes.
In 2017, I believe two things will happen — there will be more advertising on social media platforms and less organic publishing. The case can be made that a brand does not need to publish organic content on any social platform and instead can opt for an owned platform (website) plus paid promotion to create and grow an audience.
Of course, social media sharing can happen, but the brand doesn’t need to be present on that platform for sharing to happen.
Trend 2: Email renaissance
According to Campaign Monitor, social media darling BuzzFeed added over 1 million email subscribers in the past 12 months. How? The answer can be found in trend No. 1.
With social media channels moving toward revenue growth, brands have almost no control over communicating with fans and followers. Of all the ways to grow an audience, email has emerged as THE most critical.
In 2017, we’ll see two things. First, more brands will launch targeted and relevant e-newsletters, which will become the key method to grow their audiences.
Second, more brands will take a hard look at the e-newsletters they have and move them from “email as marketing collateral” to “truly amazing and relevant customer experiences.”
Trend 3: Buying influencers
As Robert Rose and I covered in a recent This Old Marketing podcast, CNN bought the social media app Beme owned by YouTube celebrity Casey Neistat who amassed 6 million followers through his video blog. CNN is shutting down the app and asking Casey and his team to start a new media platform.
Basically, CNN is looking to target a new audience, one that it believes Neistat holds the keys to. Instead of organically growing a platform or finding a leader within its ranks, CNN just went out and purchased Neistat and his team for $25 million.
Influencer marketing was hot in 2016. Look for influencer marketing to shift a bit from partnering with content creators and distributors to flat-out purchasing them.
You can read more from our friend at the Content Marketing Institute.