Strategic marketing agency Twin Engine recently released a new infographic looking at projected trends in online and social marketing for small businesses for the upcoming year 2014. While online and social media tools (such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and targeted websites and blogs) have been critical in recent years for small businesses looking to connect with customers and expand into new markets, this is expected to become even more relevant in the coming year. Here are some of the key points contained in this infographic.
- In 2014, the social enterprise is expected to emerge as a critical business function, with more and more emphasis placed on this type of outreach. Thus, social media will soon be considered an essential component of any successful business strategy, and budgets for digital efforts will exceed those for traditional efforts accordingly.
- In the next year, mobile marketing is expected to surpass traditional advertising modalities. Companies will continue to engage more and more with consumers in real time using location based advertising tools.
- Content marketing is becoming key to attracting and retaining customers. However, an important point to keep in mind is that images outrank words when it comes to engagement.
- Within the world of online marketing and social media, augmented reality is expected to shift marketing from data oriented to an approach that emphasizes visualization modalities.
- Experts expect to see a significant transition in marketing approaches, where monologue transforms into dialogue between business and consumer.
- Social crowdsourcing tools will continue to grow in 2014. For many small businesses, this can be an important opportunity as it expands available resources.
- In the coming year, hashtags will become a leading search tool for consumers.
- SEO efforts are expected to become more focused on consumer behavior.
- Small businesses will come to see that building relationships with inbound marketing is going to be critical to long term growth.
Social media platforms are also expected to evolve, with LinkedIn expanding business adverting options and Twitter playing a critical role in news distribution. Google+ will continue to be a key engagement tool, while Facebook sponsored updates become more mainstream and YouTube grows as a content tool. Slideshare and Pinterest will continue to expand in relevance, and many experts are looking to the emergence of social TV as the next big thing, where viewers are able to comment and share in real time.
Thornton, Lucy. “14 Digital and Social Media Marketing Trends for 2014.” Perfect Balance Marketing. 11/5/13.