Heavy-Hitting Digital Marketing Trends 2016: Part Two

 Steve Renner's take on the Digital Marketing Trends of 2016

Part Two: The (Near) Future Is Now

Digital trends typically change so gradually that we don’t fully realize it until we’re holding the change in our hands. For example, in 2016 the number of smartphone users worldwide is predicted to reach 2.08 billion. That’s a pretty significant chunk of the global population as a whole. Ten years ago, very few of us would’ve seen this coming. Another one: When Facebook launched, back in 2004, it was called Thefacebook, and it was available exclusively to college students. Now the little social network that could has completely shifted the way humans communicate. It’s difficult to know which digital trends will take off (Netflix, Amazon), and which won’t (AOL, WebTV). But a little heads-up on which digital marketing trends will (probably) dominate in the year ahead is always a good place to start.

Here, we’ll uncover a few more of the biggest (projected) digital marketing trends slated for 2016.

Thinking Small, Living Large

Consider the luxurious services now offered to everyone through mobile apps: Uber provides curbside car service with a few swipes, Instacart and other delivery services have become ubiquitous, and if you want an up-close-and-personal peek into the life of a celebrity, simply follow them on social media. These apps, and apps like them, have ushered in a digitally democratized era. Organizations will continue to capitalize on this trend, working in tandem with teams of business analysts and designers to bring luxury services to the masses, and providing more and more solutions to more and more problems.

If you don’t believe the future is not only here, but that it’s for everyone, just consider digital assistants like Siri and Cortana. We may not have flying cars (yet), but we’re carrying a concierge in our pockets.

Get Personal: Relationship Marketing

Fact: Relationships grow customer loyalty, and customer loyalty grows business. This is relationship marketing.

Fact is, mobile ubiquity brings businesses closer than ever to customers and potential customers across the globe. This is an incredible opportunity to establish communications and relationships directly. Relationship marketing targets customers through long-term personalized engagement. Meaningful customer relationships and conversations build loyalty, company recognition, lead generations, and brand advocates. The mass-market approaches of yesterday (and of the less-savvy) are dwindling. Instead, companies are focusing on microcosmic relationships. How? Through easily accessible data and interpretable formats that allow us to operate within relationship-mapping frameworks.

Location, Location, Location

Location-based marketing will likely soar in 2016. Using this technology, such as iBeacons and RFIDs, marketers create an interactive experience by targeting users at the point of engagement. iBeacons, which operate using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology, can help users get the most out of events, providing them with sign-up forms and scheduling management systems, and more. Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) devices, on the other hand, contain chips and antennae, providing users with unique identifiers. These devices come in the form of wristbands, cards, and apps, allowing users to interact in new and engaging way, such as sharing their experiences to social medai in real time. Location-based marketing is yet another way businesses can engage with customers and potential customers in a personal and timely fashion.

That’s it for our latest installment of Heavy-Hitting Digital Marketing Trends 2016. Stay tuned for more predictions, right around the corner.