What’s Trending in Marketing for June 2018

Staying up-to-date on marketing trends is a great way to reflect and verify whether your marketing efforts are in tune with what’s going on in today’s marketplace. We’re aware that keeping up with these trends can often be difficult given the abundance of information thrown at us every day.

The following articles come from popular marketing blogs and highlight current marketing trends that we think are worth paying attention to:

Noteworthy Marketing News and Trends

Instagram’s New Native Payment Feature For Users

According to an article by Josh Constine on TechCrunch, Instagram’s new native payment feature will allow individuals to buy services or book appointments without having to leave the application. Users can now register their credit or debit card as part of their profile and will not be forced to go to a separate website or re-enter their payment information when purchasing a service. For businesses, this exciting feature will lead to higher conversion rates, as people will feel less inclined to quit in the middle of the checkout process and will make Instagram an even more powerful player in commerce. The potential of this feature has also enticed businesses to want to increase spending on advertising their services on Instagram.

Facebook’s Expansion of Reporting Options For Advertisers

Facebook’s Ads Reporting platform will be updated over June and the new changes will allow advertisers to customize their reports to their liking according to a recent write up on Marketing Land. The platform will also make things a lot easier for advertisers as it will include a side panel so they can edit ads on the same screen as the campaign page without having to switch back and forth between tables. Along with the updated platform, a new “creative reporting” metric will also be introduced and will provide users with useful information on which of the implemented creative ad elements are performing best.

Improving Your Marketing Program

Improve Your Marketing Strategy By Asking These 4 Questions

What separates a successful business from the rest? For Dan Gartlan, it’s the constant improvement and updating of marketing strategy. Updating your business’s strategy will demonstrate to consumers and competitors that you are in tune with the changes in your competitor’s messaging, methods of communication, consumer concerns, and the overall marketplace. In this article, Gartlan challenges you to reevaluate aspects of your business in relation to your marketing strategy by asking four key questions.

6 Email Marketing Tips

Email marketing continues to be a popular form of marketing and given the abundance of emails people receive daily, it’s important to make sure that your email looks good and stands out. Our own Nicole Wagner published a blog posts that offers tips on how to make the best out of your email marketing.

Recent Marketing Reports, Updates, and Trends

Amazon, Homebuilders Unveil Smart Home ‘Amazon Experience Center’ in California

A new partnership between Amazon and Lennar, one of the largest homebuilders in the U.S., plans to shake things up with their efforts to create pre-wired, voice-activated smart homes that will change the future for homebuyers. A recent article on Security Info Watch explores how Lennar plans to integrate Amazon’s Alexa voice-assistant program into the design of the future homes they are going to construct. They have already constructed several models of these smart homes across the nation so people can experience what it would be like to live in one. Amazon and Lennar are convinced that this partnership and new creation will allow people to have greater control over their lives and could potentially make doing chores a thing of the past.

Influencer Marketing for B2B Brands in 2018

While you might believe that influencer marketing is solely for B2C brands, Michael Brito asks you to think again. Influencer marketing has proven to be efficient in increasing ROI and reaching audiences. According to Brito, the principles of influencer marketing can be also be applied to B2B markets and the implementation of it for these brands can be explained using the 1:9:90 model of influence, which has been used in the past to find, segment, and activate groups of people. By applying this model and understanding the differences between each group, you can then determine the best way to engage with influencers and encourage them to talk about your company.

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What’s Trending in Packaging Design

The packaging of your products is more than just packaging, it’s a way to promote the product as well as your brand. Because there are so many businesses out there competing for the same audience, it’s important that you do everything you can to stand apart from the competition — and this includes keeping up with what’s trending in packaging design. The following are some of the articles that we’ve found that explore current packaging design trends in addition to where packaging trends are going in the future.

Smart packaging creates new ways to connect with consumers

When it comes to baking and snack packaging design, consumers care about functionality, such as whether packaging is re-closeable. With new advances in technology, manufacturers are turning to the Internet of Things (IoT) to create smart packaging, going beyond what a product’s package has traditionally been able to do. For example, NFC uses tags on their packages that allow consumers to pull up useful information, including promotional offers, product information, and more, using their smartphones. A recent article on Baking Business details the potential of smart packaging and how it could change the way consumers interact with packaging in general.

Special effects: Tetra Pak offers eye-catching options

The visual design of a product’s packaging is often what helps it stand apart from the competition. Food Dive recently published a blog focusing on Tetra Pack Artistry, a line of packaging material designs meant to help food and beverage makers give their products a stylish facelift. These unique designs include packages that resemble paperboard with wood fibers and even packages that use holographic images. All of these packages are carefully designed to draw the eye of the consumer and generate interest in the brand.

What are some package design trends that you can follow for the remainder of 2018? Read here!

How winning brands differentiate with digital packaging

The demand for high-quality, sustainable beautify products has resulted in more and more new brands entering the market, resulting in extremely stiff competition. A recent article on Beauty Packaging explores how competition has driven the need to explore every potential advantage, including through the use of a digital packaging design that allows consumers to engage with the brand more effectively. Digital packaging has allowed companies to provide more information to consumers without cluttering their physical product packaging. QR codes that allow consumers to scan packaging using their smartphones to access more information is just one example of successful digital packaging design.

A more flexible design for gel-based spirits

Roger Renstrom recently wrote a blog focusing on Flexible Packaging Association’s 2018 competition, in which two students from the Iowa State University designed easily transportable flexible squeeze pouches for Win-O’s gelatin shots. The packaging is not only well designed from an aesthetic standpoint, but also from a functional standpoint as it makes the product it holds easier for consumers to use. The design uses a laminated structure of PET, polyethylene, and foil, and allows users to easily squeeze the product out of the package using a small tube to consume at their own pace.

These four recent articles should give you some valuable insight into what’s trending in packaging design as well as where the future of packaging design might be heading.

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Video Marketing Trends for 2018

Over the past few years, video has become essential to any successful content marketing strategy, which is why it’s important to pay attention to video marketing trends in 2018. The reasoning behind video’s importance? Video is easier for people to consume and to share than other types of content. Almost every device has HD video capabilities, including smartphones. In fact, mobile consumption of video content is as high as it’s ever been. Keeping this in mind, the following are a few video marketing trends to pay attention to this year:

Video content will be produced more regularly

It wasn’t that long ago that businesses would have to invest heavily in creating quality video content. Because of how expensive this was, few businesses could afford to create more than a few videos a year. Due to advances in technology, producing video has never been easier — or cheaper. Expect to see more businesses creating video content on a much more regular basis.

Video content will become less promotional

video tutorials

Video content used to be solely promotional. Businesses would only invest in video content if it were a commercial of some sort. However, businesses are now starting to leverage video content as a way to engage their customers and to offer something of value that will build brand trust. As a result, more video content will focus on demonstrations and tutorials rather than product or service promotions. This means that video will play a more important part in nurturing leads through the buyer cycle.

What are 3 videos every B2B website should have?

Small businesses will be producing videos 

Because of how affordable it is to produce video content, smaller businesses are likely to begin producing their own videos as well. They are realizing that they have a much better chance of increasing brand awareness via video as a result of the fact that 92 percent of mobile users that watch videos will share video content with others.

Social media channels will become more video-oriented

Video content is the most viewed type of content on Facebook, and YouTube has consistently been one of the top social media platforms. However, more and more social channels are integrating video into their platforms as well, including Pinterest, Instagram and even Quora. Facebook has even introduced their Facebook Watch feature to capitalize on their users’ interest in video content. These platforms understand that video is the future, which is why they are racing to improve their ability to host and share video content.

Live streaming video will become even more popular

Live streaming is quickly taking off as a great way to provide your audience with unique content that they can engage with. All that’s needed to stream live video content is a smartphone and an Internet connection. With this, you’ll be able to live stream anything via social channels such as Facebook, YouTube or Twitter. Additionally, live streaming offers a sense of exclusivity since once it’s over, it’s over. This makes advertising certain events, whether you’re live streaming a conference or a show, extremely effective since it appeals to audiences’ sense of FOMO (fear of missing out).

Not only has it become easier for consumers to view video content, it’s become easier for businesses to produce it. This is the reason why video marketing is here to stay. These are some of the video marketing trends in 2018 that you may want to consider implementing into your inbound marketing strategy.

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What’s Trending in Marketing

Keeping up with what’s trending in marketing is an important way to ensure that your marketing efforts remain up to date. Not to mention that they can provide insight into how you can adjust your marketing strategies in order to improve your results. The only problem is that keeping up with what’s trending in marketing can be quite a challenge seeing as how the online marketing landscape seems to always be shifting.

The following are a collection of articles that we have curated from some of the most notable marketing blogs on the web highlighting recent marketing trends that we think you should be aware of:

1. Noteworthy Marketing News and Trends

The power of podcasting: How to boost your reputation and search engine rankings

Podcasts have exploded in popularity over the past five years, taking on the position that radio once had in our lives. As you can imagine, there’s a lot of opportunity for marketing using podcasts as a result. A recent article about podcasts published on Search Engine Land recommends establishing yourself as an authority within your field through the creation of webinars, video content, a social media presence and more. This helps build credibility so that you’ll have a better chance at being invited onto a podcast. Once you’ve built a name for yourself, you’ll want to pitch podcast ideas that can benefit your SEO efforts to podcast hosts that are relevant to your business.

YouTube’s new TrueView for Reach option makes bumper assets skippable

According to an article by Ginny Marvin on Marketing Land, YouTube recently introduced a skippable option for short-form ads that are called TrueView for Reach, which can be skipped after five seconds; however, advertisers only pay if the viewers watch 30 seconds, the viewer interacts with the ad or the video ends. YouTube has implemented this new option in response to requests for ways to optimize TruView buys based on the different campaign objectives that customers have. One of the beta testers of the TrueView for Reach option, Samsung, revealed that it reached over 50 percent more people at half the CPM (cost per thousand) using the new feature.

Google Switches to Infinite Scrolling Mobile Search Results

Google has switched from having to click from page to page on their mobile SERP (search engine results page) to being able to scroll down infinitely by clicking on a “more results” button. This could potentially change what it means to rank on the first page of SERP according to a recent write up on the new infinite scrolling feature on Search Engine Journal. However, it’s currently in a test phase, which Google will only make permanent based on user feedback.

What other trends are there? Check out these ten ways to use Google Trends to Increase SEO!

2. Growing Your Inbound Marketing

Do You Need to Redesign Your Website?

Your website plays a huge role in your ability to market effectively. If it’s been a while since you updated your website, it may be in need of a redesign. Our own Nicole Wagner did a write up recently sharing some of the signs that a website needs to be redesigned. These signs include poor web rankings, a change in branding, a lackluster conversion rate, an outdated look and a subpar user experience.

Your Company’s Core Values Play a Role in Developing Your Brand Story

Storytelling is one of the most important aspects of marketing. Without it, you’ll have trouble engaging with your audience and connecting with them. We recently published a blog post on developing your brand story detailing how important it is to employ storytelling in order to share what your company’s core values and beliefs are and how that will evoke stronger emotions and build stronger bonds with your audience.

3. Recent Marketing Reports, Updates, and Trends

Pinterest reports 50% gain YoY in SMB advertisers

The Pinterest Propel ad program has been around for a whole year now and it recently reported a 50 percent jump in small and medium-sized business advertisers since it first went live. Pinterest has made a concerted effort to position their platform as an effective tool for advertisers and also revealed that businesses who are using Pinterest Propel are earning three times as many clicks than those who are not — and are even experiencing an average of 15 percent lower cost-per-clicks within the first 90 days.

Snapchat looks to offer new e-commerce options for Discover Publishers

According to a recent post on Marketing Land, Snapchat is currently testing a new e-commerce option on some of its Discover publisher channels. The new feature will allow users to swipe on products within the Discover platform in order to buy them from the Snap Store. Although they are just testing the waters, the company seems to have great ambition for its store’s future potential. Several publishers have revealed that they have tested the new feature and that currently, Snapchat is not taking a revenue share from any of the products being sold so far during the testing stage.

Facebook & Cambridge Analytica: What we know, what they knew & where that leaves us

Facebook has been all over the news as of late due to the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Considering the fact that many businesses leverage the use of Facebook for their marketing efforts, you’ll want to know where the future of Facebook lies. A recent article on Marketing Land goes into detail about the scandal as well as Mark Zuckerberg’s recent testimony in front of Congress addressing the issue of Facebook’s privacy settings and user consent.

The future of retail is Generation Z-dependent — and martech is the way to reach them

A new generation (Generation Z) is coming of age, and like every generation before them, their buying habits are different. Rohit Gupta explains how important it is for businesses to begin adjusting their marketing efforts to better target this upcoming generation by providing numerous tips. These tips include customizing the purchase journey, connecting through social media, preparing for the use of voice recognition technology, and focusing on convenient shipping options.