If you've ever wondered what marketing will look like in the future, you're not alone. In 2019, top companies are already starting to integrate some innovative marketing strategies. The truth is that if you want your business to continue to experience success and gain an edge over the competition, you definitely want to look towards the future.
As customer's behaviors and demands continue to evolve, companies are rising to the challenge by incorporating new technologies into their marketing campaigns. For example, forward-thinking marketing executives are taking a proactive shift to AR/VR knowing that by 2021, the combined market size of AR and VR is expected to reach 215 billion U.S. dollars.
However, AR and VR are not the only technologies that are making waves in 2019. Here is a brief look at some of the most innovative approaches that brands are taking to evolve their marketing efforts.
Interactive Video Content
According to HubSpot's State of Inbound 2017 report, YouTube and Facebook video are the 2 most popular distribution channels that marketers want to introduce into their strategy in the next 12 months. In addition, video display ads are expected to become the second highest ad platform over the next two years.
As a result, interactive video content is on the rise as marketers take the next step from traditional video into providing an interactive experience for customers.
Consumers are drawn to videos because of the deeper attachment they experience as a result of the visual elements. Realizing this need, the trend towards interactive video content is already in use by marketers in several industries.
This year, brands are putting the discussion about creating and sending personalized, customer-oriented messages into action. Why are companies so interested in personalization? Because it drives performance.
Marketers are incorporating automation tools that track prospects to make intelligent decisions on which prospects to target, thus making subsequent interactions highly relevant. These algorithms are driven by data, such as customer searches, buyers' behaviors and interests.
With this information, customized content campaigns can be designed for every single customer or prospect. By adding in location and real-time based automation, brands can deliver also immediate responses to their customers' actions.
Have you ever bought something online, don't like it, had to argue with customer service and spend more money than you'd like to return it? Now customers can get what they want the first time around without unpleasant surprises!
Ikea recently rolled out Place, which is an AR app for iOS users that allows them to preview furniture in their homes. This type of AR integration combines AR with e-commerce by allowing customers to visualize their products in their actual surroundings and then place an order right away if they are satisfied with the result.
Using an AR app as a marketing tool allows a brand to create interactive and highly persuasive experiences to convert casual shoppers into buyers. Augray has developed an interactive app TaDa time: The new era of Social messenger app which redefines how we communicate.
Digital Meets Offline
How about engaging with your favorite brands at sporting events and concerts? This year, digital goes marketing offline. The future of marketing means that your online activities as a consumer will now follow you into the real world.
The age of treating digital marketing as a separate discipline has come to an end. Today's cutting-edge brands are integrating digital marketing into all traditional methods of advertising and PR. As digital marketing becomes seamlessly integrated into real-life experiences, brands are blending the two, often using AR and VR as a segue.
Have you ever gotten customer service from a bot? Chatbots are an example of AI interference that has already gone mainstream. Traditional chatbox and text communication are being enhanced with bots that have the programmed capabilities to interact with users and make them feel as though they are talking to a real person with consciousness.
With AI already being used in SEO and email, brands are starting to put it to use for marketing purposes. In fact, recent data uncovered from the Salesforce State of the Marketing Report found that high-performing marketing teams are more than twice as likely to use AI in their marketing campaign as compared to under-performers.
Additionally, 57% of marketers who are already using AI say that it is essential in helping them increase touch points with customers.
Audio and Voice
As voice search rapidly becomes more utilized over type search, marketers will begin to leverage audio-based user experiences as a marketing tool. According to eMarketer, there are currently 45 million voice-assisted devices in use in the U.S. and that number is expected to rise to 67 million by 2019.
Amazon Echo, which is the device that currently owns roughly 70 percent of the smart speaker market, utilizes Amazon's AI technology called Alexa. Consumer-facing brands including Tide, Zyrtec, and Purina have launched their own “Ask Alexa” campaigns to provide personalized or relevant information to followers of their brands.
Additionally, 3D audio is also being used in conjunction with 360º videos to enhance user experiences. In fact, Vogue, AMC, Fiat and GE are just a handful of brands that are have released 360º video content with spatialized audio. The demand for spatial audio content has increased so rapidly that Google and Facebook both released dedicated spatial audio workstations.
As these technologies gain mainstream attention, more brands will experiment with them in order find new ways to engage with customers. Brands will develop multi-faceted marketing strategies in order to deliver the experiences that customers prefer.