“The future is much like the present, only longer,” said baseball pitcher Dan Quisenberry.
Here are some predictions for the future of marketing in the year 2019 and beyond from some thought leaders I polled, plus a few of my own prognostications.
Here are predictions from digital growth marketing expert and speaker Lisa Apolinski, owner of 3DogWrite, who I met this year when she asked me to help edit her upcoming manuscript. Recently I asked her for some forecasts and here are three points she made:
- Digital, Digital, Digital. “Audiences will want better and more personalized digital engagement,” says Apolinski. “The digital user experience will need to be more seamless with stronger connection between digital assets.”
- It’s A Scandal. “Digital content overload will mean reviewing and optimizing digital messaging to keep it authentic and relevant,” says Apolinski. “With ever-growing data scandals, like the most recent one involving Facebook, privacy settings will increase, reducing data collection on social and other digital channels.”
- A Higher Degree. “To stay ahead of digital marketing trends, marketers will add education to their professional development with a digital marketing certificate program like the one offered at the University of South Florida.”
I put the question to one of my favorite marketing authors, David Newman, author of Do It Marketing, and creator of the Speaker Profit Formula that works with executives and entrepreneurs who want to monetize their expertise:
- Marketing More Personal. “What’s the one thing you can’t outsource or delegate? Your physical presence, at least not yet,” says Newman. “Thus, marketing strategies like speaking, networking, relationship building and becoming a visible authority will become increasingly important as digital assets become commoditized. Entrepreneurs and executives who want to be positioned as thought leaders will speak at more industry events, present more conference keynotes, host educational seminars and CEO round tables, and find other ways to market their smarts to their customers and prospects live and in person.”
- Value Add Advertising. “Heck, even advertising may finally become valuable and something we look forward to receiving instead of an annoying sidebar on a website or unwelcome interruption to a video,” says Newman.
Here are two predictions from global sales culture expert and author John Waid, who speaks and consults internationally:
- Human Marketing. “As a backlash to poor service, scandals, and even the current political environment, marketers will focus on treating customers more like human beings (than cash cows) in the new year and those that do will be rewarded by customers buying more and being more loyal,” says Waid.
- Internal Marketing Becomes King. “Marketers will be asked by their leaders to focus more energy on marketing to their internal customers (employees) as employment rates are low and disgruntled employees will be leaving in droves, causing retention rates of top talent to plummet,” said Waid.
Here are three of my marketing predictions:
- Client Attraction Chain Reaction. For high-end consulting and services, marketers will quit looking for the silver bullet and focus on a whole marketing approach. The magic is in the integrated marketing mix. The winners will focus on creating a self-sustaining process to attract high-paying clients.
- Our Brand Is Generosity. More free valuable content, more free trials and more free sampling will be the order of the day. Even in a digital world the fundamental truths still apply as time goes by, and the biggest truth is you have to give to get. The Law of Reciprocation is as sure as the Law of Gravity.
- Feature Fun. Watch for more fun in marketing to cut through the clutter. Fun can capture attention. As the late, great ad man David Ogilvy said, “You can’t save souls in an empty church.”
Let’s face it, you don’t need psychic powers to know that marketing will become more digital. That means more live streaming, more personalized video messaging, and more curated content with enhanced relevance to micro niches.