In what seems like just a blink of an eye, 2016 is in full swing. Before we know it 2017 will be upon us, bringing with it an array of new technologies, developments, and opportunities that can take your startup to the next level. As time moves faster and faster, so too does the human drive to innovate.
The future is bound to be an incredible for startups--especially if you take advantage of the leading trends pushing marketing forward. Here's some of my favorite marketing tactics that are bound to make your business boom:
Harness Big Data
Everyone's talking about big data--and for good reason. This transformative technology is able to instantly track patterns and trends of human behavior using social media, digital interactions, business activities, and more. Marketers then use this information to analyze customers' interests and habits in order to make highly effective business decisions.
While big data originally came into existence in 2000, it has peaked in recent years. Thankfully, there are a number of incredible startups are leading the way in the industry, bringing this technology to the masses. One example is Optimove. Optimove specializes in digital precision marketing using the power of predictive analytics. It's marketing cloud uses big data to acquire the emotional intelligence necessary to connect with customers on a deeper level. This way, marketers are able to come up with better strategic actions that strengthen customer relationships.
Big data leaders include Oracle, Domo, and many others. By taking advantage of the advanced capabilities of big data in 2016, your business can gain a more serious understanding of your customer's wants and needs, allowing you to perfect your offerings and increase loyalty for years to come.
User Generated Content to Boost Community
User generated content, or UGC is a great way to get your users involved in your marketing efforts. Generally defined as any content that is created and and contributed by users rather than brands, user generated content is great because it broadens your content horizons with more creative input, while also empowering users to actively participate in your brand.
One clever example of great B2C UGC is Infiniti's "New Heights" contest. In this campaign customers were asked to take creative pictures of the brand's Q30 model and post on social media under the hashtag #Q30Challenges. The winner would receive a free trip to Budapest along with recognition.This contest instantly took off because it fostered user's creativity and gave customers a chance to interact with a brand they love.
In addition to content contributions, online publishers have made reviving their comments section a priority. Because comments play an essential role in cultivating conversation and creating a positive user-brand relationship, publishers are recognizing that having a more socially oriented commenting system is the key to their success. While Quartz has launched their annotations section to make comments more modern and on trend, EW has also jumped on the bandwagon--using Spot.IM as their very own on-site social network. As a result of utilizing more socially oriented and modern commenting systems, these sites are at the forefront of user experience and customer loyalty.
Following the same lines of UGC, videos offer a growing arena in which marketing is able to take place. Not only in terms of commercials and video ads specifically, video is breaching the divide between marketing and UGC in a way that is both concise and visually appealing.
When developing a video marketing strategy, each technique is different. Generally speaking, the most effective methods for using video marketing involve a strong and clear call to action, a time conscious length and engaging content.
There are a great many number of tools out there to assist you with video marketing. Webyclip offers tools that will do wonders to your ecommerce and online conversions through videos through a unique API, Waking App allows you to create and present your own content in virtual and augmented reality and MediaTanks help you bring your content to life in video form.
Pay Attention To Generation Z
Watch out millennials--Generation Z is swiftly reaching adulthood. Millennials came of age in an era of smartphones and social media, yet Generation Z-ers can't even remember a time where these technologies didn't exist. This has many implications for the future of marketing, especially given the fact that the oldest members of this group are reaching college age and becoming major influencers in the realms of technology, fashion, and pop culture.
So what are the ramifications of this in terms of marketing? Growing up at the height of social media rather than its inception, these individuals know the risks of being too public and as a result, tend to be more private than the millennials. Simultaneously, technology is almost as intuitive to them as breathing, making it easier for them to multi-task using many different platforms as well as learn new technologies. They tend to favor social apps over interaction in person, which profoundly impacts their personal and social wants/needs.
These influencers will define the usability, practicality, and hype behind new technology. So it is worthwhile for all modern companies to align themselves with their values. The challenge here are their high standards. Since they are used to relying on technology to perform, they expect the best. Therefore, your goal is to make sure to give it to them.
As technology becomes more and more advanced, so should your marketing tactics. By using the latest technology crazes suited to your customers, addressing their interests, and encouraging their participation, you empower your audience and create a thriving fan-base for the future.