Today, an increasing number of businesses are enjoying more success by publishing original content rather than from advertisements within external content. The reason behind this is a simple one – there are some additional benefits on inbound tactics – it offers branding and audience growth, two aspects that are very important for engaging and enlarging a customer base.
If you are well acquainted with online marketing for a long time, chances are you have probably experienced these changes on your own and have a hunch that this shift towards inbound tactics is here to stay. We must say, you are quite right about that. Inbound marketing will not slow down anytime soon... at least not in 2015. However, standing in the last quarter of 2014, it is safe to say that we will see some trends that will dominate the online marketing scene in 2015.
1. Content Marketing – Go Big or Go Home
Content is and has always been the king in online marketing. But today, the role of this king has become even more important. Companies today are able to establish their authority in the industry by regularly offering valuable content (infused with industry information) via multiple channels such as - social media, articles on different websites, whitepapers, eNewsletters, case studies, infographics, images and videos. This has allowed companies to gradually build rapport with its niche audience to create a following.
Sharing valuable content helps the company build a positive reputation within their industry and engage a wide number of audiences.
2. Social Media Marketing to Diversify
Nowadays, social media sites keep cropping up and most of them have become quite popular among their niche crowd. These sites offered businesses with some whole new options to produce engaging content in different media formats that will reach the mass via more than one channel and help companies reach the maximum number of consumers. Such effort also helps businesses build brand equity.
3. Mobile-Friendly Content Will Be a Survival Strategy
Your audience is on mobile and so, businesses should be there too. And the easiest way to ensure their presence is to create content that’s accessible to mobile users. According to Forbes, “87% of connected devices sales by 2017 will be tablets and smartphones”. Therefore, in order to stay in the business, companies need to either create an alternate mobile version of their website or opt for responsive web design. The idea is to offer a positive experience to the smartphone and tablet users.
4. Ad Retargeting to Thrive
This is a great new marketing strategy that utilizes browser cookies to track the websites that users visit. Once they leave a site, the products or services they viewed will be shown to them again in advertisements across other websites they visit.
With“only 2% - 3% of web traffic converting on the first visit , ad retargeting can effectively increase the conversion rate by reminding prospects of the product or service they viewed. Seeing the brand names and logo over and over again will make them trust the brand and eventually purchase the goods or services.
Even if the consumer does not buy anything immediately, ad retargeting pays off in the long run. Therefore we are sure to see many of these in 2015.
5. SEO and Social Signals to Become More Connected
Though social signals don’t carry the same weight as traditional inbound links, they play an undeniable role in organic search rankings these days. Let’s not forget, they’re one of the three pillars of SEO. The higher the number of social shares of blog post, article or product page gets the more relevant and audience-friendly the content will be. And since search engines aim to provide users with the most relevant and valuable content, they will give social share its due importance and increase its position within the search engine results pages.
Have you ever wondered why the content with the highest number of social shares get the top spot on search engine ranking? – Coincidence? We think not!
So, businesses must take these trends into consideration before planning an online marketing strategy for 2015. Following one or more of these trends will enjoy better brand visibility, social media presence and increased sales.
William Walker lives at Birmingham in Alabama and works as an online marketing strategist. He teams up with the best of startups to plan on products, growth, mobile, online business and brand equity. He enjoys writing informative blogs with good coffee or wine to inspire the wannabe market leaders.