As the end of the year is rapidly approaching, it’s time for marketers to start planning for the new year.  So, what exactly does the digital marketing landscape look like in 2019? Advances in technology will continue to dominate and dramatically shift progress in everything from SEO, to PPC, social media, content marketing and beyond.

Gone are the days when you could simply turn a blind eye to sci-fi tools like artificial intelligence.  In this modern age, visual searches that incorporate this technology are no longer just gimmicks, rather a future we all must now embrace.  And, there are many more new digital marketing trends and strategies that have evolved into must-haves in order for efforts to succeed.

What may have worked last year, just might not cut it as competition to embrace new technologies increases in 2019.  So, let’s take a look at eight digital marketing trends that you absolutely can’t afford to miss out on:

  1. AI – While it may not be taking over the world just yet, as many blockbuster films would have us all believe, artificial intelligence is at least making some jobs, especially when it comes to marketing, much easier.  AI technology has the ability to analyze consumer behavior and search patterns to provide us with actionable data from social media platforms, blogs, advertisements and beyond that can better help businesses understand how their users are accessing their products and services.  This means that through the use of AI, businesses can save costs and accelerate growth to edge out their competition.
  2. Chatbots – Chatbots have already become a go-to tool for digital marketers, and this trend will continue to grow in 2019.  They’re an AI-based technology that uses instant messaging for real-time chat with customers and site visitors. It’s a tool and service that many customers have come to prefer as the primary form of communication, as chatbots are prompt, responsive, patient, and have accurate recall that offer unparalleled customer service.   
  3. Video – Both pre-produced and live video continues to gain popularity, with a large number of businesses using it to give consumers a more personal experience they can buy into.  These videos include a look behind the scenes at everything from employee stories, to life in the office, to how products are made, etc., all of which allow for a more interactive (not to mention shareable) experience.
  4. Stories – The popularity of social media stories will continue to grow in 2019 as well, so it’s important for marketers to consider this format in their digital marketing strategies.  Since stories aren’t permanent, disappearing after a set period of time, they’re a fantastic tool to help promote engagement and brand awareness, as they create a sense of FOMO, or fear of missing out.  Much like video, social stories are a great way to give users a behind the scenes glimpse to make them feel like they’re a real part of your brand, team and message.
  5. Personalization – Personalization has become the ultimate goal for digital marketers and their campaign efforts.  And in 2019, your business will need to employ this tactic in order to stand out. This means personalizing all marketing, from content, to emails, products, and beyond, produced from available collected data, including consumer behavior, purchase history, clicked links, and more.
  6. Programmatic Advertising – Programmatic advertising is quickly changing the face of digital advertising.  It’s a form of advertising that uses AI to automate ad buying to better hone in on and target more specific audiences.  This kind of automation makes the process almost instant and much more efficient, which ultimately means higher conversions and lower customer investment costs.
  7. Voice Search – With the increasing use of voice search, it’s now more important than ever for businesses to rethink their digital marketing strategies in 2019.  Through the use of AI, voice search plays an important role in providing relevant information in response to user voice commands and audio content.  This is a direct way to deliver value-based content to your customers.
  8. Influencers – Word-of-mouth marketing will always be a great way to get your message out, and that’s exactly why you should be using influencers if you’re not already.  Influencer marketing focuses on using key leaders (e.g. celebrities, social media stars, respected journalists, etc.) to drive your brand’s message to a larger audience.  This way, you don’t have to take a swing (and possible miss) at marketing directly to a large group of people. Instead, you pay influencers to get the word out to a larger audience for you.  

For digital marketers, the coming year will be all about providing a better customer experience through the use of AI-powered technology, automation, and personalization.  So, take advantage of these tools and trends to stay ahead of the curve to increase your conversions for a successful new year.