Our review showing examples of the latest innovations in digital media, technology, and data to support digital transformation

We love review­ing inno­va­tion in mar­ket­ing. It’s inter­est­ing to see ‘what’s hot’ and ‘what’s cool’, but to keep it prac­ti­cal and action­able as we like, we’re equal­ly inter­est­ed in which com­mu­ni­ca­tions and trans­for­ma­tion tech­niques will make the biggest com­mer­cial improve­ment for busi­ness­es.

A good exam­ple of the com­mer­cial impact dig­i­tal tech­nol­o­gy and media can have is Domi­nos. I recent­ly heard about the impact of dig­i­ti­za­tion of Domi­nos from Dave Wild, their UK CEO at Tech­nol­o­gy for Mar­ket­ing / E‑commerce Expo. Domi­nos UK only took its first mobile phone order in 2010 when online sales account­ed for less than 30% of rev­enue. Eight years on, Domi­nos have a mar­ket share of more than 50% with dig­i­tal trans­ac­tions accounts for more than 80% of sales and the UK smart­phone app account­ing for more than two-thirds of those sales.

In this review of dig­i­tal inno­va­tion, I’ll take a look at exam­ples of the lat­est mar­ket­ing tech­niques lead­ing com­pa­nies are deploy­ing which are like­ly to be adopt­ed as trends across busi­ness­es next year.

To struc­ture my review I will look at these new tech­niques and tech­nolo­gies across these 8 key dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tions tech­niques which form the dig­i­tal chan­nel essen­tials toolk­its used to struc­ture our plan­ning tem­plates in our mem­bers’ area.

Which marketing techniques will be most important to marketers in the year ahead?

Before I give my view on the more strate­gic mar­ket­ing trends, I thought it would be use­ful to look at changes in tac­ti­cal pri­or­i­ties that mar­keters think are impor­tant to grow­ing their busi­ness. It’s been real­ly inter­est­ing to ask this ques­tion on our blog and in our research reports over the last few years to see what the most sig­nif­i­cant trends are ‘across the board’ and how these vary through time.

  • #1 Con­tent mar­ket­ing — this has fea­tured con­sis­tent­ly in the top 3 for sev­er­al years. I think it’s num­ber 1 since con­tent mar­ket­ing can be applied by all types of busi­ness regard­less of their sec­tor or size and if the right strat­e­gy is fol­lowed can make an impact that sup­ports com­mu­ni­ca­tions across all touch­point of the cus­tomer life­cy­cle. It fuels all dig­i­tal chan­nels from search, email, and social media mar­ket­ing. This makes hav­ing a defined con­tent mar­ket­ing strat­e­gy essen­tial to com­pet­ing in many sec­tors.
  • #2 Arti­fi­cial Intel­li­gence and Machine Learn­ing — This is an excit­ing ‘new entry’ into the top 5 and sug­gests that mar­keters now believe they will see a return from deploy­ing the lat­est AI tools sup­port­ing the many mar­ket­ing appli­ca­tions for AI we review in this info­graph­ic. With­in AI, I believe the most pop­u­lar mar­ket­ing appli­ca­tions will enhance per­son­al­iza­tion and mar­ket­ing automa­tion which brings us to…
  • #3 Mar­ket­ing automa­tion and email mar­ket­ing — This is also a peren­ni­al fea­ture in our top five and it’s no sur­prise since, like con­tent mar­ket­ing, it’s effec­tive for both B2C and B2B mar­ket­ing. While some more mature orga­ni­za­tions will make improve­ments through the use of AI, oth­er less mature busi­ness­es will ben­e­fit from improv­ing the rel­e­vance and tim­ing of their emails through using rules-based automa­tion and per­son­al­iza­tion.
  • #4 Big Data (includ­ing mar­ket and cus­tomer insight and pre­dic­tive ana­lyt­ics) — It’s good to see big data in the top five since we believe in the pow­er of data-dri­ven mar­ket­ing. Big data analy­sis such as pre­dic­tive ana­lyt­ics typ­i­cal­ly requires larg­er bud­gets, so will be restrict­ed main­ly for larg­er orga­ni­za­tions, but the use of mar­ket and cus­tomer insight using the tools shown in our Martech tools wheel is open to all busi­ness­es and I think is why this is a rel­a­tive­ly pop­u­lar choice.
  • #5 CRO and improv­ing web­site expe­ri­ences — This is the first time that CRO has fea­tured in the top 5, which is again a sign of increased adop­tion of data-dri­ven mar­ket­ing as process­es improve in orga­ni­za­tions who can now run ‘always-on’ improve­ments using struc­tured AB test­ing pro­grammes. There is also the option of new low­er-cost tools includ­ing Google Opti­mize which is freely avail­able.