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Most Important Digital Marketing Trends Going Into 2020

Digital marketing trends

Once upon a time, it was impossible to imagine concepts like voice search engine optimization, AI or even data-driven marketing. Looking back at the last decade we can conclude that these digital marketing trends are top priorities for the modern business.

It is not surprising, however, because digital trends are fast coming and fast-evolving. Relevance in the modern market dictates that organizations seeking real growth must remain abreast of these trends.

As much as we make reference to modern trends, it is important to note that the modern consumer is also evolving very fast. Their behavior and interests are harder to predict. Marketers should be awoken to the fact that guesses will no more cut it and old tactics are mostly irrelevant.

In the words of Brian Solis:

“Businesses are no longer the sole creator of a brand; it is co-created by consumers through shared experiences and defined by the results of online searches and conversations.”

Below is a list of digital marketing trends for 2020. They will be the difference between surviving and thriving in a modern business age.

Digital Marketing Trends for 2020 That Will Give Businesses an Edge

1. Chatbots

Just like they were in 2019, chatbots will be increasingly in demand and will be used for digital marketing in 2020. Chatbots are an AI-based technology used for real-time instant messaging. They are priceless tools in communicating with customers around the clock.

Here are some interesting chatbot stats to keep in mind:

Customers prefer organizations that use chatbots because it guarantees access and support around the clock. These bots perfectly recall your buying history, and never run out of patience. They cut down the need for paid personnel and are by far the better choice for repetitive tasks; allowing staff to focus on more important tasks.

There are a lot of brands that are using chatbots to great effect. Fandango, for example, employs the Facebook Messenger bot. This bot lets a user Find local theaters, watch movie trailers, and see weekly trends.

Most Important Digital Marketing Trends Going Into In 2020

2. Artificial Intelligence

For years there have been a lot of theories on how the world could be dominated by AI. The truth is that 2020 will see a lot of AI dominance. This last decade it has taking over many simple jobs and that is not going to slow down in 2020 as more jobs will be AI-based.

How much AI dominance is expected in 2020? Well, a lot. Havard business review and Gartner analysts have forecast that AI technology will be very rampant and will be the main part of every software product and service in 2020.

Here is an interesting quote from the Techgrabyte

“Artificial intelligence is the biggest commercial opportunity for companies, industries, and nations over the next few decades” and “will increase global GDP by up to 14% between now and 2030,” which means that “AI latecomers will find themselves at a serious competitive disadvantage within the next several years.”

One key example is the use of Knightscope K5 robots by Uber and Microsoft to patrol and secure large outdoor areas and parking lots. These robots read license plates, collect data and are taught to report suspicious activity. The funny fact is that these robots come in cheaper than human labor. They can be rented for as low as $7/hour.

AI is taught to go through data found on social media platforms and analyze customer patterns and behavior. This data are key in helping businesses understand how customers use, find and relate with their products and services.

3. Programmatic Advertising

This digital marketing trend is very AI-centric. In programmatic advertising, AI is used to automate the process of ad buying, this allows a more specific audience to be targeted. When AI performs the tasks of Real-Time bidding, there are higher conversions and customer acquisition costs are at a minimum.

It gives digital marketing a huge boost making it invaluable. It is predicted that by 2020, 86.2% of digital display ads will be programmatic.

There are a lot of stats that make this reality more real. Irina Kalvalenko is quoted to have said:

Most search-driven manual advertising campaigns (even those performed with professional tools) take into account three or four targets: the keyword, time of day, and location. Such tools like programmatic demand-side platforms can use hundreds of targeting signals to individualize the advertisement and even target according to lifestyle or behavior habits when integrated with customer data platforms.”

4. Conversational Marketing

There has been a lot of talk on how consumer behavior keeps evolving. This necessitates a need for conversational marketing. This is, in fact, one reason why chatbots are increasingly used.

Did you know that 82% of buyers want an immediate response when they have a problem?

Conversational marketing allows a buyer to experience a one on one relationship with a vendor.

The use of an extensive range of devices and platforms by users means marketers in 2020 must carry conversational marketing across numerous platforms. There, brands will meet customers on the customer’s terms and schedules.

The end goal is improving user-experience by adopting a feedback-driven model of communication with customers. In 2020, conversational marketing will be the ideal means of marketing because:

  • 79% of consumers prefer to use messaging apps for customer service
  • 82% of consumers consider having an instant response an important factor in resolving questions
  • Live chat for marketing and inquiries is used by 36% of companies

5. Shoppable Posts – Social Commerce

This last decade, social media and e-commerce grew exponentially. This growth has fostered the integration of new marketing strategies. Brands in 2020 will exploit this to increase sales opportunities.

Social commerce is the buying of products or services directly on social media through posts or adverts. With Instagram’s Checkout; which allows users to complete their purchase from Instagram, shoppable posts becomes a real way of making sales.

The biggest advantage of this trend is that leads will have a higher conversion rate because they do not have to switch applications to complete an order.

According to Instagram, the platform has about a billion users, 90% of these follow active brands and are daily users of the app. The platform is a beehive for marketing opportunities, and this trend will see more growth in 2020.

Already, 25 million business profiles exist on Instagram, and a third of the most-viewed stories on Instagram are from business accounts. The market is continuously growing, and it will be wise to ride along with this chariot and increase your sales opportunities.

6. Content Personalization

Digital marketing trends this last decade have been fast and coming; content personalization trend is a few years old but will be more relevant in 2020 because of the sheer amount of competition in the modern market.

With regards to content personalization, Michael Brenner said:

“If you want to cut through the fat and emerge as a brand your buyers want to engage with, your marketing has to seamlessly resonate with your buyer’s goals, interests, and preferences.”

Two big companies that marketers could draw personalization inspiration from are Amazon and Netflix who display a well-tailored recommended set of movies or products.

To take your business to the next level, it is wise to reflect on these stats:

  • It is proven that 63% of consumers are turned down by repeated generic ad messages
  • 80% of users agree they will do more business with brands if they offer personalized services

7. Social Messaging Apps

Many users assume messaging apps are just meant for casual conversational use, in fact, this could be no further from the truth. A few statistics on social media messaging apps create the full picture:

  • 1.6 billion users are active on WhatsApp monthly
  • 1.3 billion users are active on Facebook Messenger monthly
  • People and businesses exchange 10 billion messages monthly on FaceBook Messenger
Digital Marketing Trends: social messaging apps

Since people are passing more time messaging, these apps have grown in popularity and should be exploited by every digital marketer.

The broad range of personalization allowed by social messaging apps will increase the value that is added to the customer when they are used as marketing tools and it is almost a requirement these days that businesses have their presence on messaging apps.

Reasons for your brand to use messaging apps include:

  • Contact cultivation
  • Information delivery
  • Sales boosting
  • User involvement
  • Customer reactivation
  • Assistance and support provision

8. Video Marketing

Video marketing is arguably the most important of marketing trends today and it is not looking to slow down any time soon.

Marketers have adopted it throughout the last decade and will continue to include it in their marketing strategies for 2020 for some of the following reasons:

Hubspot claims that users prefer to learn about brands using videos:

Digital Marketing Trends: video marketing

Other than YouTube, video marketing is increasingly in use in different social media platforms. There is an increase in the use of video posts and live broadcasts on LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.

Video content has been a favorite for marketers because it makes it easy for content to be duplicated across many platforms and in diverse forms. Marketers have adopted a number of approaches to videos other than just having them uploaded to Youtube:

  • Video transcription for a text-based representation
  • Transcription publications on blogs beneath embedded videos
  • Video uploads with transcriptions on FaceBook
  • Audio extraction for podcasts

9. Push Notifications On Browsers

85% of online stores in the last year have utilized push notifications as part of there marketing strategy. It looks like a digital trend that will continue into 2020. A few stats show why it has been a vital digital trend:

  • 9% of publishers increase traffic with the use of web push
  • Only 10% of the best email marketers can achieve a newsletter sign-up rate that matches the performance of web push

Email marketing potency has taken a dent with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) update. That coupled with the fact that younger audiences prefer other methods of communication makes push a viable means of marketing brands. Personalized push notifications are getting more advanced and will continue throughout 2020.

10. Email Marketing

Email marketing over the last decade has developed beyond the mere promoting of brands, goods or services. It is in fact, the use of emails to develop, foster and enhance clients and leads. Almost every website has a subscribe form with the sole aim of email list building. Going into the new decade, email digital marketing trends are not going to slow down.

According to Colin Nederkoorn (Founder Customer.IO);

“If you’re running a real business, email is still the most effective way to universally reach people who have expressed interest in your product or site. For that, it really can’t be beaten.”

In 2018 the Radicati Group suggested that about 2.5 billion people worldwide own and use emails. This figure accounts for 34% of the world’s population and they predicted the number will increase to 2.8 billion in two years. They also estimated the number of business emails sent to be 109 billion daily. You probably receive a number of emails daily, many of which you read and seek inspiration from. It is a big part of our lives and a lifeline for any business looking to thrive in 2020.

There are a number of email marketing services that make the work of automation and delivery easily manageable, in fact, almost every CRM service provides integration for the biggest email marketing services. In 2020, marketers are going to familiarize themselves with the best tools to maximize this trend. Apart from automation tools, marketers who understand the art of writing powerful converting emails in 2020 will have an advantage and will record higher open rates and conversions.

Digital Marketing Trends: email marketing

Verdict on Digital Marketing Trends in 2020

In the modern marketing game, relevance is the goal, and with the ever-increasing list of competitors, staying updated with the digital marketing trends of the times is a priority.

Here I have not made an attempt to present an exhaustive list of trends, but just the biggest of the trends worth following in the new decade.

Please let us know what you think. If there are trends you feel is not inclusive, let us know in the comment section.


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Afam Onyimadu
Afam is an astute wordsmith with deep backgrounds in SEO, copywriting, editing, and digital marketing. He is an avid consumer of information across multiple niches but has a specialty for content marketing and technology. Asides writing, he is a music enthusiast and an animal lover. He enjoys the company of family and friends and indulges in chess, scrabble and a few card games.