This year has seen technology develop, new techniques created and algorithm changes - marketers need to prepare for emerging and continuing trends to stay ahead of the game.

  • As 2020 is fast approaching, it is time to focus on upcoming trends to be aware of before entering the New Year.
  • This year has seen remarkable changes, which show no indication of slowing down but what is noticeable is the opportunity for brands to reinforce and build on the lasting connections that have been initiated in 2019.
  • So that brands can continue to thrive and grow in the New Year, they must find new ways to connect and engage with consumers in an era of high consumer expectations and competitive disruption.

1. Social Influencer Marketing

In the past, ‘influencers’ were thought of as celebrities, typically with millions or hundreds of thousands of followers. However, 2019 saw this change to individuals with a much smaller following but who are still able to reach a targeted audience and gain their trust.

Influencer marketing has developed to become more personalised, along with an increase in authenticity. With influencer marketing predicted to reach $10 billion by next year, it is clear that this trend is here to stay and provide marketers with new ways to connect with their audience.

2. Video

Consumers respond well to visual content and this is obvious from the success video saw in 2019, and 2020 will be no different. On average, live videos shown on Facebook Live and Instagram Live are more likely to keep the target audience watching three times longer than pre-recorded videos.

Video content means brands can form a lasting connection with their audience, as 80% of consumers can recall a video they saw in the last 30 days. It is worth brands not only considering live video but also long-form videos. While short messaging is beneficial in the short term, it is less likely to resonate to the same extent as long-form which provides a deeper level of engagement.

3. Developments in Technology

The way consumers engage with advertisements will undergo a complete transformation in the coming year thanks to the release of 5G technology, advancements in AI and VR and voice recognition, to name a few.

  • 5G will result in a surge of mobile usage as it will improve the way consumers access and use content.
  • AI will make way for more personalisation in digital video.
  • Voice recognition will see further expansion as more homes begin using Alexa, Google Home and Siri.
  • Connected TVs and over the top media (OTT) mean that users will be able to interact with ads from their TV and mobile phones, which will increase product placement in videos.

4. Interactive Content

In 2020, marketing will see a more active focus on providing audiences with what they want, e.g. shoppable posts, 360-degree video, and AR/VR. The success of this trend for 2020 is down to its originality in the consumer journey, it can cut through the noise and provides consumers with a reason to engage and continue their journey.

For example, shoppable ads on Instagram. When a user taps on an image, the product name and price will appear, giving the user the option to go to the site for more information or a purchase opportunity.

91% of consumers want more interactive content and its success is due to:

  • Interactive content is different and as a result, it stands out more.
  • This content will keep consumers on the site longer, but for the right reasons.
  • Interactive content is more shareable which in turn, increases brand awareness.
  • This type of content is more enjoyable and engaging to be a part of than other content.

5. Personalisation

2019 saw savvy consumers tuning out advertising noise that was not relevant to them. 2020 will be the year personalised marketing soars as marketers focus on creating lasting connections with their target audience. They have noticed that traditional advertising efforts are losing their effectiveness and to overcome this, they will focus on personalisation.

80% of consumers in a survey of 1,000 people stated they would be more likely to invest their time in a brand that offered a personalised experience. Marketers need to embrace this change so the opportunity to connect meaningfully with an audience is not missed.

6. Content Marketing

Content has been a high priority element of digital marketing for many years, and the coming New Year does not change this. High-quality content always has and always will demonstrate a brand’s expertise and authority over their product or service.

Marketers experienced a year of heightened consumer expectations, increasingly savvy consumers and continual competitive disruption in 2019. Although 2020 does not indicate this will slow down, marketers have the opportunity to build on the progress made this year to stay competitive and ahead of the game in 2020.

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