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1. Social Media Search Functionality Enhancements
Highlighted Below Are the Most Recent Impactful Digital Marketing Benchmark Changes:
- 2015 - Facebook lost Bing - replaced site search with own algorithm for free search on all public posts.
- September 2015, Instagram opened advertising on the platform to everyone.
- 2016 - Twitter updated its advanced search capabilities to allow for long-tail keyword searches.
- 2016 - Facebook shared that most of the videos on their site are watched without sound.
- 2016 - Pinterest added Engagement Retargeting.
- 2016 - Lookalike/Actalike Audiences, and Snapchat enhanced its ad targeting capabilities.
- 2016 - Google enhanced mobile page load speeds - introduced Accelerated Mobile Pages Project (AMP).
- March 2016 - LinkedIn launched Account Targeting.
- April 2016 - Twitter introduced Ad Groups.
- April 2016 - Facebook launched Facebook Live, which improved live streaming.
- May 2016 - Instagram added dynamic (retargeted) ads to the platform’s offerings.
- June 2016 - Easier YouTube's live streaming - captured/served directly through the company’s mobile app.
- June 2016 - Pinterest amplified ad targeting for customer list, visitor, and lookalike targeting.
- September 2016 - Facebook added category blocking.
Social search effectively researches and targets by allowing marketers to search for any term on Facebook and find public posts using that term. These results are filtered by source, location, and date, giving you results for people that already follow your brand, are located in your area, and have posted questions about the term you searched.
These insights drive content marketing by speaking directly to your audience, and allows B2B organizations to implement account-based marketing using the data to announce/promote their targeted campaigns.
2. Real-Time Marketing
Real-time marketing highlights current and topical events, and is effective in earning big boosts in traffic and visibility. It’s easier than ever to find trending topics these days. Using Google Trends, Twitter and Facebook provides up-to-date information on popular topics.
3. Live Video Streaming
Live video emerged with Facebook launching Facebook Live and YouTube releasing a new capability for live streams to be captured and served directly through the company’s mobile app. These new services have made live streaming easier than ever, and marketers are using this simplified access to achieve a variety of positive outcomes including increased engagement and damage control.
4. Evolution of Pay-Per-Sale (PPS)
The PPC advertising model has transformed to a PPS model, through finite targeting capabilities that allow marketers to hyperfocus their advertising on audiences that are more likely to convert. LinkedIn launched Account Targeting; Twitter introduced Ad Groups; Pinterest amplified its ad targeting capabilities with customer list, visitor, and lookalike targeting.
People are accessing the internet with a wider array of devices than ever before, forcing marketers to invent innovative ways to reach buyers across platforms. Noteworthy...SEO marketers across most industries are increasingly incorporating natural language and long-tail keywords into their strategies due to voice search features that are increasingly available on wearables like the iWatch.
6. Visual-Driven Advertising
Limited attention spans and media-driven lifestyles cause users—and thus marketers—to prioritize images and video that capture attention instantly. The demand for visual advertising is in some part driven by rising mobile usage - for the first time ever 2016 saw mobile usage surpassed desktop usage. Smart marketers should be using these visual platforms to create dynamic, visually compelling ads to attract attention.
With a solid remarketing plan you can increase engagement across both search and social media while reducing the cost-per-click of your ad campaigns. Marketers can use retargeting in a number of ways. If a product is viewed on your site but not purchased, retargeting can display that specific product as an ad. Or a larger-scale approach can be taken that serves promotional offers to people who visited your site but didn’t convert.
8. Big Data and Real-Time Analytics
Finding meaning in big data is easier and more accessible with tools such as real-time analytics, predictive analytics and advanced marketing automation. Since big data is opening business opportunities more than ever, marketers are using real-time analytics to simplify processes, improve conversions, and more precisely target potential customers. Anticipating what they click and order lets you directly target them earlier and directly.
9. Mobile App Development
Today progressive web apps blend a website and app that allows push notifications and offline access without requiring visitors to download a separate mobile application. Since most mobile app usage occurs on email, social media, messaging, and browser apps, progressive web apps allow marketers to focus on building progressive web apps that marry the best parts of both sites and apps: faster load speeds, push notifications, the icon-able on a phone’s home screen, and indexing by search engines.
10. Speedy Website Experience
Quick-loading websites and pages are critical for SEO. If it takes more than three seconds to upload, half of people will abandon a search. On mobile, fast loading sites are critical, given the vast scope of browsing to find something. Slow page speeds have a huge impact on bounce rate: Google’s research found that by expanding search results from 10 to 30, load times were increased by half a second, resulting in a 20% drop in traffic.
Planning for the Future
There have been major changes in social media, mobile apps, SEO, wearables, and big data in 2016. When considering the most effective way to begin 2017, be thoughtful that those you implement offer the biggest benefits to your goals and strategy. If you’re not keeping up with changing industry news and marketing trends, your competition will get an upper hand and dilute your ability to win those new deals.