These 3 Trends Will Define Marketing Success in 2023
As PR practitioners, we have to immerse ourselves in the industries in which our clients operate. Over the last few months, the evolution of AI, a volatile economy and shifting consumer preferences have forced businesses across all sectors to overhaul their strategies.
Last week, my N6A colleagues and I had the chance to attend DigiMarCon East, a summit of industry leaders to discuss the latest in digital marketing, media and advertising. As communications partners for some of the fastest-growing martech, adtech and ecommerce companies, it’s important for us to keep a finger on the pulse of the biggest trends impacting our clients’ businesses, especially during a time of massive upheaval and transformation across all sectors.
Based on everything we learned, these are the top trends impacting this space.
AI will usher in a new era of marketing innovation—if implemented properly.
Over the last few months, generative AI—especially ChatGPT—has unleashed a flood of discussion and experimentation. Its rapid advancement has marketers pacing to catch up and unlock its potential.
If executed properly, AI helps marketers analyze massive amounts of data in real-time and make faster decisions to optimize campaigns. With the ever-dwindling sources of third-party data, it’s important for marketers to harness the power of first-party data in order to increase targeting efficiency and campaign ROI. AI has the potential to execute these robust functions in order to deliver exponential success.
By freeing up the manpower required to analyze data effectively, AI gives time back to marketers to focus on the creative aspects of their craft. These include developing stronger visuals, drafting compelling copy and building strategies that flex their creative thinking. Most importantly, they’ll be able to do this with a data-backed process, as they will have access to more in-depth and accurate recommendations that will help them fully refine their work.
Despite the rapid advancements, AI still has a long way to go before it can fully automate core marketing and advertising processes. That means communications professionals will continue to provide core creative and strategic value.
Brands can’t afford to ignore the creator economy.
Over the past few years, TikTok has brought creators and influencers to the forefront of the industry conversation. While social media platforms and the dominant voices on them have been a mainstay in marketing strategies for quite some time, success looks quite different in the TikTok era. Instead of glossy, idealized Instagram posts featuring carefully curated aesthetics, more consumers are responding to the chaotic authenticity of short-form content on TikTok—which has had social media incumbents like Meta and YouTube snapping at its heels. Short-form video content is expected to generate billions in revenue for all these platforms in the coming years.
In addition to TikTok, brands should be looking toward other companies that are attracting more influencers and heavily investing in infrastructure to utilize them. Amazon, Spotify and Roblox are among the few that are leaning toward this strategy and are expected to compete heavily with the mainstay platforms in the coming years.
Most importantly, brands need to invest thoughtfully in creative strategies that fit the format of these platforms instead of applying the same formats and calling it a day. Consumers expect brands to cater to their content consumption preferences and will write off those that miss the mark.
Data mastery is more critical than ever.
The marketing and advertising industry has been roiled with setbacks and budget cuts due to the unavoidable influences of the economy and have shifted focus to smaller, targeted initiatives. This has increased the reliance on martech solutions that offer robust analytics capabilities to optimize campaign performance. Companies in this space are seeing a sharp rise in demand despite the economic headwinds and have the opportunity to capitalize on this unique situation.
In addition to analytics, technologies like Web3, metaverse and blockchain should also be looked at closely by marketers as immersion, attribution security and privacy are becoming key to engaging consumers. While financials may not allow for much experimentation right now, marketers should still be paying close attention to what’s working with these technologies in preparation for when budgets return to normal.
The road ahead won’t be any less bumpy for companies in the marketing and advertising space. In fact, it’s likely that new trends will have pros playing defense and chasing the next great opportunity. However, with the right strategic thinking and hypersensitivity to ongoing shifts, growth and innovation will always be achievable.
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