Trying to determine what the marketing trends will be for the coming year is not a fun exercise in which industry experts are playing fortune tellers.

It is something much more serious and very useful, since having an idea, even if it is approximate, of where the paths of digital marketing will go in 2019, will help us, among other things, to define the strategy and the most actions adequate of our digital marketing plan and to be in an advantageous position against the competition. Do you need some light in the darkness? This post interests you!

What was trending in 2018

As regards digital marketing, 2018 is about to end and it has been a year of continuity for some of the trends that were already beginning to emerge in 2017, as well as the affirmation of new actions.

The marketing trends that originated in 2017 and that have hatched in 2018 have basically been two:

Growth of two already classic social networks: Facebook and Instagram. Despite the bad omens in relation to these two giants of social platforms, especially due to the supposed abandonment of millennials, the truth is that both Facebook and Instagram have grown in 2018  in both the number of users and advertisers. The secret of the good health of these veteran networks lies in having known how to adapt to new uses, needs, and demands of users, such as streaming video.
Rise of the video format. The videos, which were already hit hard in 2017, had a great public acceptance during 2018, which has encouraged marketing managers to include them in their digital campaigns. Especially in its most affordable versions: ephemeral videos, testimonial videos, interviews or videos of product samples.

The paths that digital marketing has traveled in 2018

With regard specifically to the year 2018, we have been able to distinguish 4 very marked lines of action in the field of digital marketing:

In the contents, quality has been clearly prioritized over quantity, since it has been found that, sometimes, users did not have material time to digest all the published material.
Increased penetration of instant messaging for advertising and marketing purposes, especially through WhatsApp.
Marketing automation enhancement. Marketing departments have been forced to step up process automation to gain effectiveness and efficiency.
Hatching of Big Data. The analysis of all types of data, especially the interaction of users on social media (Social Media Intelligence), has been confirmed as a first-rate tool for brands and companies when making the best decisions regarding marketing.

The importance of knowing the trends in digital marketing

We said at the beginning of this article that trend prediction is not a whim or a diversion, but a necessary, important and useful question. These are the main advantages of knowing what the immediate future holds for us in the marketing sector :

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Being aware of news helps define the most appropriate strategy.
Prepare an online marketing plan with all the necessary actions, prioritizing the most important ones.
The information on trends is very useful when preparing the marketing budget for the coming year, determining the economic and material resources that we are going to need and the most profitable investments.
It helps that news does not catch us unexpectedly and makes it easier for us to adapt to it.
They help us stay one step ahead of the competition.

What awaits us in 2019? Top 7 trends

After a review of the previous year, we will unveil what, in our opinion, will be the 7 main trends in digital marketing in 2019. Bets accepted!

1. Video marketing
Everything indicates that in 2019 the use of video in marketing campaigns will intensify and develop. The incorporation of a new specific application for video functions in HubSpot, one of the world reference platforms for online marketing, is a very clear clue that demonstrates the growing importance of this format in digital marketing.

What’s new in HubSpot Video
As we have seen, HubSpot is strongly committed to video with the launch of HubSpot Video, a fully integrated application on the platform that allows a series of video marketing functions that were not possible before  and that are also free for system customers:

Up to 250 videos can be hosted for free in the file manager. These videos can be optimally reproduced and transcoded and easily embedded in blog posts, social media, and other landing pages.
Add CTAs (call to action buttons) and forms directly to videos.
Create lists and workflows based on user interactions with our videos.
Creation and sending of personalized videos.

The importance of video to impact the user
The non-use of the video in our online marketing campaigns prevents us from benefiting from the following battery of advantages :

The potential in terms of visibility of video pieces on social networks and online platforms is very remarkable.
Video content has a great impact and adds added value to the user.
They facilitate interactivity with users.
They improve engagement between brand and customer.
They are a format of great consumption on the internet in all kinds of connected devices.
The use of video is a favorable factor for organic positioning (SEO).

2. Incorporation of IGTV on Instagram
With more than 4 million daily interactions and average participation that exceeds Facebook by 23%, Instagram has long ceased to be a promise to become one of the most powerful marketing channels on the internet.

In order to strengthen its prominence, a few months ago the social network Instagram launched IGTV, its new video platform dedicated exclusively to mobile users, since its reproduction is vertical and, therefore, fully suitable for viewing on small screens of smartphones.

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One of the main innovations of the new IGTV channel is that it allows the publication of long-format videos, which enables the implementation of more complex strategies that go one step further than sequenced Instagram Stories ads.

3. Augmented reality on Facebook

It is a very new option and still in the development phase but with great potential. The augmented reality ads on Facebook allow, with a single touch in the CTA “Touch to test”, access to the camera of the user’s phone so that they can see how they would look, for example, sunglasses or a lipstick.

It can be very useful for the promotion of certain products and represents a great change in the way of interacting with the user, improving their experience. How about?

4. Chatbots in marketing automation
The chatbots can be considered as another part of the marketing automation, allowing to simulate conversations with customers automatically, achieving progressively greater perfection thanks to the use of artificial intelligence systems.

Its basic beginnings of the beginning are giving way to a notable development of this system  that, possibly, will be perfected in 2019 allowing advantages such as:

Cost savings in customer service personnel.
More efficient and agile interaction with the client.
They can become systems that some customers are most comfortable with.
The weaknesses of chatbots are that they require a somewhat high initial investment and not all people feel comfortable communicating with them, nor are they effective for all services or markets.

5. Influencer Marketing
The influencers are famous or celebrities of the virtual world. Its YouTube or Instagram channels have hundreds of thousands of subscribers and loyal followers.

They are characterized by having great charisma and magnetism, being able to generate opinions and create trends. For this reason, the simple appearance of some of them with a garment of a specific brand can increase sales due to the imitation effect of many of their followers. And the same goes for a good review of an item or service.

The strategies of marketing influencers are still very new and, therefore, with a wide range of travel and development. It is expected that in 2019, due in part to a foreseeable change in legislation that requires greater transparency in certain marketing campaigns with influencers, this type of campaign will opt for:

Identification and use of influencers who add value to a brand because users feel identified with the character and not so much by more general criteria as the number of followers of their channel. In other words: also on the issue of influencers, the quality will prevail over quantity.
Campaigns of this type will be focused above all on achieving engagement with users, seeking complicity and creating positive synergies between brand, influencer, and customer.

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6. What’s New in Voice Search
The voice searches will be taken increasingly into account in the digital marketing strategies of companies by the confluence of three factors :

The unstoppable increase in voice searches by users.
The incorporation of devices or gadgets such as  Google Home or Alexia from Amazon, which extend voice search to other uses and devices, removing the exclusivity of smartphones, as it has been until now.
The notable impact on SEO of this trend. When searches are done by the voice they are different than when typing them because there is usually a greater semantic mismatch and geolocation has an important weight. All this must be considered in our keyword search strategies and other issues.

7. Increased use of mobile devices
The progressive increase in the use of the smartphone to access the different web pages, gradually displacing the desktop PC (desktop) as a priority form of connection, is not in itself a novelty. However, in order to define the web and content design strategies for 2019, a series of data collected in this post cannot be overlooked :

The 90% of the members of the millennial generation, a strip of very consumerist age, are connected via online daily and almost uninterruptedly.
Although the use of the desktop to buy online or fill out lead conversion forms is still the majority, 40% of brand ambassadors (influential users who recommend and criticize products) already use the smartphone to buy.
The latest changes in Google’s algorithm to position web pages give priority to the mobile version in those pages that have two different versions. This topic is extensively developed and discussed in this article on Mobile First published on our blog.

How to use trends to our advantage

In conclusion, I would like to emphasize the importance of always being well informed of trends in online marketing with the aim of incorporating them into our annual strategies and budgets and, in this way, being prepared for the changes that are coming.

Knowledge of trends allows us to position ourselves at an advantage over the competition, anticipate changes, apply new actions and analyze the results based on the reaction of the users.

This does not mean that we have to try to apply all the trends, but only those that we think can provide us with advantages and benefits.

Finally, it is important to remember that trends are not irrefutable, incontestable, or rigid facts. They may change over the course of the year, fail to materialize, or not do so as strongly as experts had predicted.

So if you think that this list is missing, in your opinion, any trend that you consider will come true in 2019, what are you waiting for to predict it?

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