We’re almost halfway through 2020. Though none of us could have predicted what kind of year it would be especially for small business, I thought it was worth looking back at some of the digital marketing trends that we talked about at the start of this year.
We're going to go through each of them to see if they've stood the test of time (half a year), and talk about one more 'new' trend that has come into the spotlight again.
1. Snackable Videos
Videos have continued to rack up great engagement rates for social media. But the format and length boils down to your strategy. With an increase in the use of social media due to lockdowns, video consumption has also witnessed a bump.
So snackable videos are still popular. Some content dependent businesses such as The Futur, Social Media today etc. have a video first strategy. They create long form content (hour-long Youtube live sessions, webinars) and then extract snackable videos from that to create shorter snackable videos to post on their social media channels.
Video content in the form of webinars became widely popular as a strategy to engage with audiences and impart business knowledge
If nothing else, it still pays off to create some kind of video content to schedule on your social media to get more attention and engagement.
2. Dual Strategy Public / Private
A dual strategy makes sure you’re covering all your bases.
5-6 months into 2020, big brands like Hubspot are still using this dual approach to create content for a broader audience, such as instagram posts about new WFH gifs available on Giphy, while creating more targeted content for audiences further down the funnel, such as blogs about results from outbound sales in the past few weeks.
The key here is still to create content for the classic buyer's journey stages:
Awareness: At times lighthearted, more generic content for top of the funnel audiences.
Consideration: More focused content about industry trends and solutions for audiences in the middle of the funnel.
Decision: Highly focused content about particular problems, and how your business resolves it, case studies, Product how-to guides for bottom of the funnel prospects.
3. Community / Niche
This still holds true. Even more so now. Recent algorithmic changes in Google’s search algorithm for instance prioritize content deep knowledge on a particular subject rather than very flowery blogs that are made up of other blogs without adding any value to them.
On platforms like Linkedin too, this manifests itself in experts coming to the fore, and creating content about their own experiences and learnings.
Targeting a well defined audience with niche content that actually provides value seems like the way to grow for the time being.
4. Voice Assistants
Two key facts to take into account.
- More people are using voice search and will keep using it.
- Voice search optimization can be different from normal SEO.
The number of search queries with question phrases in them have increased mainly due to voice search
As we wrote in January, it is imperative to include question phrases in the content you create. Though it would be an error to think voice searches include long tailed keywords.
Voice search terms follow a similar pattern to text based searches as far as the length of keywords is concerned.
5. Making Statements
The way 2020 has unfolded, it has become more important to be supportive, and show that your business cares for customers, employees, and other stakeholders in times of crisis.
Making loud political statements is secondary to sending out a message of support, and then staying true to it as a business and as a brand.
6. Going digital
The importance of undergoing a digital transformation/digitalization was high before 2020, and in 2020 and beyond, it has become a necessity. Without digital processes in place for business operations, payments and finance, human resources, marketing, and sales in place businesses might continue to suffer in the midst of an economic downturn. So this ‘new’ old trend has forced the hand of business owners into going digital now or never.
Other than a few big trends that are being witnessed world over, 2020 has been a difficult one to predict. Though our list did end up nailing quite a few of the trends that we’re seeing today, and will be seeing for the months ahead.