Every single year, software pushers and consulting idiots across the marketing cosmos line up the lists. And not just any list…the list of marketing ‘trends’ or ‘predictions’ for 2014. To save you some time, misery and frustration, here’s the lineup of BS you’ll likely see in the top 10 or top 100 list of online marketing bloggers and digital design pubs across the globe.
It typically begins something like this…
2014: The Year of Mobile Commerce
A who’s who list of marketing thought leaders have predicted this for the past five years, or more. So maybe 2014 will be the year we hit the economy big on the small screen? Well according to a report from Marketing Land, mobile traffic now accounts 28% of all web traffic – so the mobile ship has sailed.
People visit your site and read your blog on smartphones already. They buy products on their phones – using your mobile app and mobile browser. And when people have websites or other digital experiences that aren’t responsive, they’ve already left.
2014: The Year of the Customer
Like mobile, this trend is already behind us. Even if this wasn’t the case, here’s a fun fact…customers have always controlled your company’s destiny (online or offline) – this is called Supply and Demand.
The growing social media business risk for companies makes this prediction the safest of them all. One minute you tweet, and a few replies / retweets / embeds / blog posts later, your role at the company hits the cut list. More people impact your online business today, for better or for worse, thus the purpose of web strategy.
2014: The Year of Social Media
This one comes from the same BS social media consultants that scream engagement as a metric year after year. While engagement can indicate success in reach, social following, post share-ability and other soft wins, focusing on social engagement will NOT make your marketing metrics move. Find a balance in publishing, promotion, capturing leads, and engaging your social media followers. And before I get off this one, don’t read the CEOs will begin to buy into social media.
The reason to roll beyond this BS prediction? Maybe ask the experts Weber Shandwick – who found that a whopping 76 percent of executives believe their CEO should be social in today’s online market.
2014: The Year of Content Marketing
In this marketing trend, there’s actually a split in how this foretelling is told. It can be pushed in two distinct (but always predictable) versions of the same story…
- The Year of Visual Content – not only is this trend behind us, it should have never been a prediction. When did people not like visual content (art, landscape, sculptures, monuments, statues, etc.)?
- The Modern Marketer as a Publisher – your typical online business does NOT – and will NEVER – have a big content team or budgets to be equal to even the smallest of publishers. Content Strategy is not the news…it’s the creation of liquid and linked content that drives a planned conversion.
2014: The End of the SEO
So you lost the Google keywords that you had been obsessing over for years…I get it (they are still in Webmaster Tools, but I feel your pain). Google encrypted keywords and changed its algorithm…again. And once again, the update to the search algorithm was to focus more on topics than specific keywords. To even the novice in content strategy, search engine optimization (SEO) is still a major player in the online marketing game.
People still have questions. And when they’re online, they still need to search for the answers. So…you still need to optimize your content for search engines – only now, you’ll need to do it differently. A prediction like this gets posted solely for page views – ignore it when you’re seeking real SEO knowledge.
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