With the end of another decade, Roobix is taking the opportunity to look back on what’s changed over the last ten years in the marketing world and what might be in store for 2020.
To give you an idea of how far we’ve come, the iPhone 3GS was reigning supreme in 2009. It ran on iOS 3, which looked like this:
Instagram didn’t launch until 2010, and it didn’t allow sponsored posts until 2013. Hard to imagine that now when Instagram advertising revenue was estimated to hit $14 billion USD in 2019.
How did this happen? Well, the average time U.S. adults spent on mobile media increased from 46 minutes a day in 2011 to 258 minutes a day in 2017. Online marketing, of course, has eclipsed print and television.
In his article for Forbes, Christian Thomson called the speed at which digital marketing evolves ‘breakneck pace’ characterised by ‘constant updates, new techniques and changes to algorithms’. And that is expected to continue – so without further ado, here are some of the key figures and forecasts for the oncoming decade.
Fact: 72% of Instagram users have purchased a product they saw on the app
According to Business Insider, a majority of Instagram users say they have purchased a product they first saw on Instagram. This has far-reaching implications for in-app shopping and shoppable posts, two features released for both Instagram and Facebook in 2017. Although it will prove difficult to track conversions based on a view-through method of shopping, the takeaway message here is that Instagram is the prime spot moving forward.
Forecast: Better tuning-out
A 2015 Forbes article found that millennials don’t respond to advertising – and that’s pretty much still the case. Heading into 2020 and beyond, people will be better at ignoring ads that mean nothing to them. AdBlock is likely to become more sophisticated, too. For that reason copy needs to be stronger, better and more concise to combat this resistance. Advertising must cut through the noise and work against the status quo to get anywhere. We may well see a triumphant return of the creative ad.
Fact: Ditching the keyword-stuffing approach
Keyword stuffing – the process of cramming as many search terms into a webpage as possible in order to maximise its SERP position – has been penalised for a while by Google but it’s also a good reason for consumers to penalise you. Nobody wants to read robot food; long swathes of bloated copy that is neither casual nor conversational. Keyword stuffing is well and truly done for 2020.
Fact: SERP #0
According to a Forbes article, ‘the top spot in SERP is now position zero, a featured snippet of text appearing above the search results. This prime location often provides information relating to the search query, while also providing a link to the page from which the information is drawn. Position zero is the first, and sometimes only, result that some users will view. As such, it is highly coveted and should be the focus of your efforts.’ In 2020 and beyond, SERP #0 will be the aim. Attaining that ‘featured snippet’ will be largely determined by the quality of your content, which again points to content retaining its title as king.
Forecast: A customer focus on branding over logic
Similar to Veblen goods, better brands can sometimes perform better purely because of their branding. This is particularly true of Instagram leads. This is purely anecdotal, but on a platform like Instagram it’s likely they don’t tend to follow the logical cost-benefit analysis of the past consumer (which takes into account extensive customer service, low price points and high quality). This group is more likely to be swayed by beautiful branding and a well-curated feed alone. Of course, everything behind the brand is even more important – but capturing that first impression will be vital.
Forecast: Instant access
Customers now demand a response to a sales enquiry in 10 minutes or less. This means a lot for the future of automation. While you may not be able to staff your business 24/7 for enquiries, you can set up automation campaigns that will alert you when a lead has interacted at any trigger point you determine. That might mean clicking a link, sending an email, or using a chat feature.
Fact: Quantify everything
Data interpretation and analysis is increasingly valuable. That’s hardly a novel idea, but now we can prove it. According to this McKinsey research, ‘intensive users of customer analytics are 23 times more likely to clearly outperform their competitors in terms of new customer acquisition than non-intensive users, and nine times more likely to surpass them in customer loyalty.’
Forecast: More visual and voice search
Both search tools are on the rise. As Amazon Alexa and its counterpart Google Home become more ubiquitous, the need to consolidate voice-search capability for your product will become more urgent. Voice search = voice-based purchasing. Visual search is also on the rise. Some research suggests nearly 20% of all Google searches return images and that many shoppers attempt to search for a product by image. ASOS is a brilliant example of this – the ability to perform a reverse-image search using their Style Match tool has revolutionised the customer journey.
Could a reverse image search benefit your business? How about automated sales attendants, or an extensive database of customer analytics?
At Roobix, we understand the evolution of marketing trends. We move with purpose, not baseless prediction – and we’re a proud no-nonsense business.