2017 is already well under way, which gives me a little advantage in talking about marketing trends because everyone else published theirs back in 2016 when 2017 was the future. Now I might be able to find something that they’ve all missed – something that hasn’t been said before – but that’s unlikely. What I can do, however, is add my own perspective to some ideas have already been put forward, because to be honest, some of them don’t seem all that plausible. So here we go…
- Video is where it’s at
The millennials have finally taken over the asylum. They don’t like text, so from now on everything will have to be presented on video in simple bite-sized slices. But if I try to watch video online, as often as not I’ll get a message telling me “this media content cannot be played.” Does everyone else have better luck, or just a better phone? Well, it must be luck, because the next piece of expert advice is to “make sure all your video advertising is comprehensible without sound, because most of it will be viewed on mobile devices”. So millennials have phones that do video, but not sound?
- Facebook does live streaming
Apparently, the big attraction now is that there are social media platforms where you can either only watch live, or you can watch a video which will then disappear. Marketers are falling over themselves to use this because the fact that it can only be seen once before it disappears makes it “personal”, and possibly even “intimate”. Brilliant! Can you remember what you just read two minutes ago? Me neither. But I saw this fantastic video the other day. What was it about? Err… well it’s gone now. Never mind.
- Tablets are no longer where it’s at
They got this one right. There are smartphones, tablets, and laptops. Phones are small, mobile and convenient. Laptops are large, easy to work with, and useful. Tablets combine all the drawbacks of both, with none of the benefits. I know this because I have an employer-provided iPad which I haven’t charged since July – mainly because I also have a phone and a laptop, both of which actually work.
- Reputation management is on the up
Well I certainly hope so! The advice is to make sure you always respond to negative online feedback, which inevitably translates to an increase in the number of indignant hoteliers getting all irate on TripAdvisor whenever someone criticizes their breakfast. Get the popcorn ready – hours of fun for the casual observer.
- Voice search will be huge
Voice search is going to be huge. This is where you ask Siri for assistance instead of typing your query into your iPhone. Then you ask Siri again, because she never understands the first time. Then you re-state your question very slowly, enunciating every syllable. And finally you type your query. A little over 12 months ago it was claimed that 10% of all searches use voice technology, amounting to 50 billion inquiries per month. Even if this figure is counting all the multiple attempts to make your question intelligible it’s still a lot, and growing rapidly. The upshot is that your search engine optimization will have to be reconfigured as a result, meaning you need to think about the words people will naturally use when they make verbal searches and adjust your content to sound natural to fit this trend.
- Connect with guests in the buying funnel
I didn’t actually read beyond the term, “buying funnel”, so I’m not sure how you should accomplish this: I just fell in love with the “buying funnel” concept. I want to think in terms of funnels much more in 2017. So dessert comes at the narrow end of the dining funnel. Boarding passes are printed before we enter the aviation funnel. And the 4 P’s are found at the start of the marketing funnel.
- Bing is rising
The lesson here is not to look at data that’s not relevant to your market. Bing has over 7% of the EU market, and over 20% in the UK. But in Asia it’s still negligible. Google dominates absolutely, with the exception of Japan, China (obviously) and South Korea. And it still leads the market in Japan and South Korea. Maybe look again next year.