“Business Has Only Two Functions – Marketing and Innovation” – Milan Kundera

Shot Blast Media are always looking at the latest developments in the marketing world. With the New Year in touching distance, we’re looking into what 2018 holds for marketeers in all industries. The ‘innovation’ age is here to stay and it’s putting pressure on a lot of industries. Technology is fast paced, meaning you need to stay nimble to compete with present day challenges.

It’s an exciting time to be in business, as long as you’re willing to constantly test, measure & adapt.

Looking at what the experts are predicting and statistics from 2017, we’ve identified these top trends that all marketers should be well aware of going into the new year!

AI takeover

AI has already started to make waves across numerous industries. You probably interact with a computer system more than you realise. AI and computer learning software can be used in various exciting ways such as:

Enhanced PPC through AI advertising. Most pay-per-click ad campaigns are managed by either in-house teams or a PPC agency. For companies who run pretty big PPC campaigns, you can now think about getting AI on board to help sniff out those killer word combination opportunities that your competitors aren’t using.

AI powered content creation. By 2018, Gartner (the world’s leading research and advisory company) predicts, 20% of all business content will be authored by machines. In addition to content creation, AI-powered marketing tools like Rocco can suggest fresh social media content that your brand’s followers are likely to engage with.

Intelligent email content creation. Now, we all know that most businesses will be using email marketing in their business. But, thinking of compelling topics to engage your viewers takes a lot of time and effort and is not always a sure fire winner.

Even with segmentation, it’s near impossible for us mere humans to personalise every single email we send to ensure the highest chance of engagement. Algorithms however, can map out a subscribers website experience & email browsing data. The computer systems work to truly understand what content your viewers are engaging with and helps you create fully personalised emails based on the results.

Nothing you do online is a secret, nor is what your subscribers do. Get savvy and use the data available! You can check out more ways AI is effecting marketing, here. 

AR/VR experiences

Literally putting your viewer at the front of your marketing experiences. We’ve been big advocates of VR & AR (virtual & augmented reality) for a while. It’s a trend that allows brands to put their viewers in the driving seat and experience their product or service first hand, all from the comfort of their homes!

Check out our blog about 5 ways businesses can integrate VR into their business blog. (All tips can also be used in an augmented reality to save viewers needed a headset!).

Content is and always will be here to stay.

The Future of Marketing is About Connection and Content. Steven Chang, Corporate Vice President, Tencent

A lot of companies may feel like content just ‘doesn’t work for them’, but the truth is, it’s still one of the most powerful online tools for ALL businesses.

Whether you work in industry, creativity, tech or anything else, you need to spend your resources on creating some killer content.

The problem is, there’s a lot of competition out there! A lot of social sites get spammed with blogs that don’t add value to the viewer. So how do you stand out? Think of a way that your business can create content in a truly unique and engaging way. Businesses, even B2B’s, need to loosen up a bit.

Here’s some amazing examples of companies who are smashing their content game.

Video smashes engagement statistics on every platform – don’t underestimate it’s power!

Last but definitely not least is of course video (we’re not biased, it’s the truth). Almost 5 billion videos are watched on Youtube every single day. Viewers trust it and most importantly, it’s the most engaging content tool to date.

By 2019, global consumer Internet video traffic will account for 80% of all consumer Internet traffic (Source: SmallBizTrends).

Check out our list of the best, and worst viral video campaigns here.