Five marketing trends you should know about in 2019

Monchü’s Digital Marketing Lead Tabitha Whiting discusses her prediction of the five emerging marketing trends to watch for the rest of 2019.

#1 Having a chatbot on your website will become the norm

We all know the importance of customer service for brands, but today it’s less about the switchboard operators managing incoming calls, and more about interacting with customers online. According to research conducted for Facebook by Nielsen, 56% of customers now prefer a customer service messaging system over speaking on the phone. That’s why we’re starting to see chatbots on every website.

We’ve already seen Twitter morph into a customer support platform, and now more and more websites have chatbots built into them. As well as ensuring that your customers are well-supported, this can also increase your customer service efficiency. If a chatbot can answer your any simple or regular queries then the team can focus on resolving more complex issues more quickly.

Robot image

#2 Video is becoming vertical

We’ve known for a while that video content is incredibly important, with YouTube being the second biggest search engine after Google, and video consumption on mobile phones rising 100% every year (according to HubSpot). Video is also important for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), with Google’s algorithms meaning that your website is 53 times more likely to appear in the first page of search results if it contains video.

For 2019, though, the key marketing trend is vertical video. Historically video content has been horizontal, designed for television screens or YouTube viewing on a desktop.  But most of us now watch at least some video on our phones, and most of us hold our phones vertically (i.e. in portrait mode) most of the time. That means that if we see a video when we’re scrolling on social media we expect it to be optimised to watch vertically – we don’t want to be constantly rotating our phones whilst we’re browsing.

Instagram even launched IGTV in June 2018, deliberately creating a channel where video needs to be in vertical form, and it seems likely that this is a trend that will continue to grow in 2019.

#3 Influencer marketing is going micro

Influencer marketing originally focused on celebrities: brands working with famous people in order to increase the reach and appeal of their product or service.  In 2019, though, the marketing trend is for brands to choose to work with multiple micro-influencers rather than one larger influencer, usually because it’s more cost effective. Working with a major celebrity, even on one Instagram post, can be incredibly expensive, so you’re more likely to be able to work with a micro-influencer on a long-term basis or for a full campaign. Plus, micro-influencers tend to have a more engaged community of followers who respect them, meaning that they’re more likely to trust their opinion than that of a mega-celebrity.

And in case you’re wondering what the hell a ‘micro-influencer’ is, here’s a summary of the different types of influencer currently:

  • Mega-influencers –  more than a million followers, usually celebrities
  • Macro-influencers – between 100,000 and 1 million followers
  • Micro-influencers – between 1,000 and 100,000 followers, whilst their following may be small(ish), their authenticity is high
  • Nano-influencers – fewer than 1,000 followers, they can have high influence in a small market, such as a particular location

#4 Visual and voice search will continue to rise in popularity

With digital assistants like Google Home and Amazon Echo becoming common in our homes, we’re all getting more and more used to using our voices for search. Research by ComScore suggests that by 2020 50% of all searches will be voice search.

Brands are starting to take notice of this. Domino’s, for instance, has recently enabled voice-activated ordering through Amazon echo in the UK. One simple way to prepare for voice search is to ensure that the meta-description of your website is optimised for voice search, making sure that it reads well out loud and spoken and doesn’t rely on images or graphics for explanation.

And then there’s visual search, allowing users to use photos to search. Pinterest launched their Lens feature to capitalise on this trend, a visual search tool that allows users to take a photo of an item in real life and then find related items on Pinterest boards, as well as finding information on where to buy it online. Google has also launched a visual search engine called Google Lens, which recognises things visually through a camera app. For instance, if you take a photo of a business card you can automatically save the details to your contacts, and if you take a photo of a painting in a museum you can find out more about the artist and other works.

Voice control on app

#5 Content is (still) the key

“Content marketing is the only marketing left” – Seth Godin, Marketing Guru.

Content marketing has probably been in every ‘top 5’ list of marketing trends since 2010, and it’s still key to any marketing strategy. It’s one marketing trend that isn’t going anywhere in 2019. Now that digital platforms are the centre of every buying journey, content is the key to your customers choosing you over your competitors. Hubspot’s research found that 47% of buyers engage with 3-5 pieces of content before they directly engage with a company.

Having great content means that you:

  • Improve the search ranking of your company, and drive relevant traffic to your website
  • Position yourself as an expert in your industry, proving that you are knowledgeable and trustworthy as a business
  • Open dialogue on social media, providing opportunities to engage with your potential customers
  • Generate leads for new business, especially through using gated content.

If you don’t have a content marketing strategy for your business, you need one. Contact us and one of the Monchü team will be in touch very soon.