As we get ready for holiday treats and NYE bubbly, we’re looking ahead to 2018 and all it holds for digital marketing. Here at the Xoo, predicting—and preparing for—the future is one of our favorite pastimes. While we gear up for all the changes next year is sure to bring, consider this post our gift to you—three resolutions for badass digital marketing in 2018:
Commit to the Journey
Your number one resolution should center around customer experience and engagement. At Sparxoo, we believe in—and demand—a seamless customer journey from prospect to purchase and beyond. How can you do this? Demonstrate to your customers, regardless of where they fall in the funnel, that you have the answers – and then take action to support this goal.
Start the customer journey with interactive, engaging content that speaks to your customers individually. Then, continue to tailor content to specific niche audiences by including personal messaging that speaks to each of your prospects. And as always, speak directly to your existing customers and seek out feedback on where you can improve and how you can do better. StitchFix, a clothing subscription service, does a great job of this. They start with targeted ads on various social media that lead to an interactive quiz. Once a customer takes the quiz and subscribes, StitchFix continues to offer direct engagement opportunities and personalize their deliveries through social media, direct 1:1 feedback, and discount opportunities for customers who refer their friends.
The nature of digital marketing is that it’s constantly changing and evolving. Rather than a concrete landscape, think of your digital marketing plans as a forecast. When developing a weather forecast, meteorologists look at patterns, trends, and as much data as possible to predict atmospheric changes and possible outcomes. Marketing works very much in the same way: in order to develop your marketing plan, you should look at what’s worked in the past, current trends, and the potential impact of new technology on future outcomes.
Currently, digital marketers should be gearing up for the ongoing evolution of interactive content. Live video, gamification, virtual reality, and voice search all present new and unique channels to engage audiences and distribute content. Oreo is a brand that does this really well—between great graphics, cute videos, and a recent contest that allowed users to submit their own flavor creations, with three winners actually ending up on store shelves. By offering an audience a direct opportunity to interact and engage with a brand, marketers can open the door for future conversations and deeper connections.
Insider tip: We love a challenge at Sparxoo, and we are resolving our commitment to using these tools to achieve our own digital marketing goals.
Build A Community
Next year, connect your business to the community and be proud of your values – your customers will notice. Research shows that more and more consumers are committed to brands with a purpose: 87% of millennials say that they base their purchasing decisions on whether or not a company makes positive social efforts. In 2018, resolve to renew your company purpose, give your brand context through individual values and charitable work, and understand how your efforts are engaging with specific communities locally, nationally, and globally.
Connecting your business to community, like most self-improvement related New Year’s resolutions, starts from within. In 2018, ask serious questions about your company culture. Do your recruitment efforts target top talent? Is your current team happy and engaged in the work they’re doing? Does your company have a unique culture that sets you apart from the competition? Google and Trader Joe’s are well-known examples of companies that create positive workplaces, treat their employees well, and work with the community (but you don’t have to look too far for a smaller, equally badass culture). If your company culture is thriving, the outside world—including your prospects—will take notice.
Hungry for more ways to turn 2018 into the best year yet? We take a deeper dive into all of these resolutions and highlight the must-know digital trends in our 2018 Digital Trends Report. From all of us at Sparxoo, we hope you have a wild and wonderful New Year!