The State of Digital Marketing in 2017

digital marketingIt’s hard to believe 2017 is half over! Digital marketing moves so fast that the world you find yourself in at the start of Q3 is often very different from the one you entered in Q1. New technologies appear and take root – while entire sites, apps, and platforms flourish or die seemingly in an instant.

What digital marketing trends are dominating 2017 now…and which ones are true, lasting keys to success?

Mobile Devices Have Conquered Shopping

As smartphone adoption reaches peaks that even industry insiders once thought impossible, the mobile world has become one with the retail world. No matter what you’re selling, you can be sure prospective customers will comparison shop before they choose you. This goes double for brick and mortar stores, as searches “near me” are now the crown jewel of SEO strategy.

Live Video Streaming is the Key to Engagement

Everyone knows that video is one of the most shareable forms of content. It’s ideal for today’s digital marketer because it inspires engagement and connection in a way that’s ultra-convenient on mobile. What could top standard video content? Live video streaming! Customers go wild for the rawness, rough edges, and unforced authenticity that good livestreaming can offer.

digital marketingBig Data is Energizing Personalization

While “too much” personalization can be creepy, the average website visitor is becoming more selective when it comes to personalized content. People of all ages and backgrounds want to see content that resonates with them as soon as they reach a website. With its unmatched predictive capabilities, Big Data can be used for content customization that really works.

Marketing Automation is Taking Center Stage

Marketing automation has always been around in one form or another. Even entrepreneurs on a shoestring budget have heard a thing or two about automated email sequences, for example. Now, however – thanks to granular analytics and more data than ever – it has really become possible to automate marketing from first contact well through the consideration phase.

What’s Coming Next – And How Can You Get Ready?

Let’s face it: There’s no way of knowing exactly what comes next in digital marketing. True, the broad trends show that platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn aren’t going away. Visual content is becoming more important, and personalization is essential to making a connection.

But there are always outliers – incredible success stories like Snapchat or bizarre failures like Vine. No single technique will keep a marketer sharp in this kind of environment. Instead, it’s important to stay focused while still remaining open to change.

Some strategies will never go wrong: Always be gathering more data about your customers, using analytics to find out what’s generating true ROI, and making steady improvements.