Monday, December 28, 2015

2016 Digital & Social Media Predictions

It's time for my yearly digital predictions, and 2016 is no exception. I've loved seeing the digital marketing field continue to advance & make big moves the past few years and appreciate how many people have embraced digital channels over traditional ones. 
  1. Out with SEO & PPC, in with Digital Assistant Optimization
    • I'm not saying search engine optimization & paid ads aren't important, but optimizing ONLY for Google is. The rise of Siri & google's new predictive questions is going to force us all to stop simply writing content we think Google will find acceptable, but to write answers to simple questions our consumers may be asking about us to make it easier for us to be found by the Siri users of the world. 
  2. Mobile growth 
    • Mobile will continue to grow & I predict by the end of 2016 for many industries it will be outpacing desktop views, clicks & purchases. Look around you on your commute home & tell me you don't see everyone glued to their phones... 
  3. Shifts in Social Media Channels 
    • Facebook isn't out & won't likely be for awhile, but with it's pay-to-play stance on unlocking views & engagement for all users, it's getting to costly & those searching to target millennials aren't there anyways. Snapchat will continue to emerge as a newer gamechanger because fewer brands can figure out how to use it will - filters are fine, but can you really craft enough content to maintain a profile? Instagram will continue to be a star as well, but brands need to figure out the right type of content & how to measure engagement on the platform properly. 
  4. The downfall of old-school brands
    • I guarantee there will be yet another older brand (cough: Weight Watchers) who will be outdone by the fact that they can't keep up with the times. If you're not shifting your content to make way for better website experiences, better social media story-telling, great-functioning mobile apps, and keeping up with your demographics' trends, you will be obsolete. 
  5. Personalized PPC 
    • I must say Facebook is doing a fair job, but it and others could do MUCH better. As a customer it's frustrating to see ads that don't matter to you, and by now everyone's been tracking your every move on every site you've ever been on, they know ALL your likes/dislikes/friends/social media engagements, etc etc, so use that! 
I'm excited to step into another year of digital advancements & can't wait to see what's in store. Last year's predictions were mostly on point! 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

How To Use Visual Content To Your Advantage

For those of you who've followed my blog over the past few years, you'll know that not only have I grown up in the digital era, but I've been working in it since before I started this blog. I've seen social media channels come and go, I've seen email marketing lose major faith from bosses & coworkers, and I've seen the digital front change before my very eyes faster than anything! 

One thing that's continued to ring true as social media, websites, email marketing, retargeting, digital advertising, etc,etc, overtakes the marketing front, is that great visual content MATTERS. Not only does it matter, it can make or BREAK your engagement numbers, ROI, CTR, and then some. 

Not only do you need to hire marketers who can spot great photography, it's probably key that they can take great photography from an iPhone as well, because that's what consumers (at least in the travel industry) want. They want you to tell a story with your imagery, don't worry so much about the text content that you have to draft up alongside it - a picture speaks 1,000 words, so don't waste those extra characters if you don't need to. 

By now, thanks to social media, you should know what types of images your consumers are interested in. Do they love food shots? Do they care more about a behind-the-scenes type feel? Do like they to see you do good? Even personally, you know before you post that instagram shot what is going to do well (and what time it does best) vs. what doesn't. 

So, don't overthink it, but use your head. Don't post that blurry shot, don't forget to fix the lighting and post a photo JUST to upload an image, not text - and DON'T feel like you can't hire a great photographer above all when you don't know where else to turn.