The world of digital marketing moves at a furious pace. The nature of the medium means that things are constantly evolving, and keeping up to date with customer expectations and new ways to reach your market can become a full time job.

As running a business in today’s competitive environment depends on establishing and maintaining a great connection with your customers, it’s important to understand the ways in which they want to keep up with your company.

With half of 2018 gone, what are the major trends in the world of digital marketing and how can your company use them?

Video Is A Winning, Multi-value Tool

If you had any doubt about this, here’s a metric that may convince you – by 2020, 80% of all web activity will be video content. Whichever social channels you favour there is nothing more attention-grabbing or better for forming a connection with your audience.

This content is eagerly consumed – viewers on YouTube now watch a billion hours of video every single day! And with a huge variety of applicable formats, from the humble vlog, to 360 virtual tours to live streams, there’s so much opportunity to find a format that works perfectly for the messaging you are trying to communicate.

If your business still doesn’t have a digital content strategy, you definitely need one. Hunt out specialist agencies such as MicroD to help you plan your approach, as this trend is going nowhere.

Getting Cosy With Influencers

Social influencers are a direct medium into the audience that you want to speak to – and one work credibility. As competition for top influencers is currently fierce, you may want to try looking for more micro-influencers – ones with smaller followings, but higher engagement within a particular niche or specialism.

Not only are you more likely to be able to establish a working partnership that genuinely benefits both of you, but you’ll be operating with authenticity.

Customers can easily detect deals that are too commercial or not genuine, and they backfire. So work on targeting the most relevant individuals for you.

Well Trained Chatbots Go Mainstream

2018 is the year of the chatbot when it comes to web support. You may be thinking of previous, negative experiences with clunky AI, but that’s a thing of the past as the technology has rapidly improved.

More and more brands are not only using them to provide fast and reliable customer service, but increasingly as a marketing channel as well.

The stats show that Millennials are comfortably interacting with these bots to find what they need with ease, so it should be a solution your company looks to adopt if you haven’t already.

Data Protection

With our personal data becoming more valuable than ever, today’s consumer is hyper aware of what we are collecting and why. The introduction of GDPR legislation in Europe back in May has shone a global focus on the rights of consumers when it comes to how companies collect and use their personal information.

And these laws which require express opt-ins and the customer to be informed about what their data will be used for apply to companies outside of the EU interacting with EU citizen too.

With big financial penalties in place to give the ruling teeth, if you don’t have a robust data policy, now is the time. You also have to watch out when GDPR crosses swords with established marketing practices, you might end up losing your Analytics data.