One of the best ways to get ahead of your competitors is to take your marketing efforts above and beyond theirs. Because of the constant and rapid changes of the digital marketing space, the opportunities to do this are plentiful - they just require time, effort and a little bit of risk.
The first step to getting ahead of your competitors is understanding and even predicting the conditions of not only your own industry, but the digital marketing industry as well. Once you can make an educated guess as to what the future looks like, you can start to build toward that future. Even if your predictions and preparations are slightly off, you'll still be rewarded. More than half the battle of getting ahead of the curve is just attempting to get ahead - your competitors do the rest for you by remaining stagnant.
In order to help you get a jump on your competitors, we focused our latest DM Video Series entry on 5 Digital Trends To Get Ahead In 2015. Here they are:
1. Marketing Becomes Everyone's Job
In the past, company departments like sales and marketing have operated as two separate entities, only crossing paths when absolutely necessary. But these days, working in silos is an archaic practice that will do nothing more than leave your company behind its competitors. As online customer behaviour continues to evolve in real-time, it's important for businesses to embrace company wide collaboration. It's not about who is responsible for what tasks, it's about how the company as a whole can work together to deliver a better customer experience. Marketing isn't one person or one department's job - it's everybody's.
2. Content Is Still King - As Long As It's Smart Content
Content has been an integral part of digital marketing strategies for a few years now, but with so much of it out there, your content needs to be better and smarter. Content that's relevant and interesting isn't just a good idea, it's a requirement. The next level of 'smart content' is mapping your brand's creative material directly to your buying funnel and targeting the different segments to see which one converts at the highest rate.
3. The Customer Experience Is More Important Than A Sales Pitch
One huge positive brought upon by the digital age is that marketing has become less sales-y. Everybody can agree that the deaths of the sales pitch and cold calls are good for business. Great marketing no longer feels like marketing and as such, is focused on offering value, making a connection and providing out-of-this-world customer service.
4. Human Conversations Overpower Corporate Messages
Keeping with the theme 'less sales-y and more real', digital marketing in 2015 will place focus on speaking to customers in terms of what they are - humans. Corporate jargon and a bland "professional" tone are boring and don't suit the digital space. As brands open up to customers and become more human, they'll develop more real connections and the beginnings of a loyal customer base. They'll also have more fun with their marketing, and there's no substitute for people having fun and loving what they do.
5. Be Mobile Ready Or Be Left Behind
It's no secret that the web - and the world - is an increasingly mobile place. By 2016, tablets are predicted to outsell laptops and desktops combined. It's a changing world, and businesses absolutely need to focus on ways they can give their marketing efforts a mobile component.