In today’s ever-changing digital and inbound marketing world, the ability to adapt is key to any business’ or company’s survival. Last year’s trends do not always mean they will be this year’s trends, and those who recognize this are better able to be flexible and innovative in their business and marketing strategies. You can choose to continue to do things the way you’ve always done them, but in a world where the stagnant get left behind, this is a recipe for failure. Do yourself a favor and take a gander at our list of the top 5 surefire inbound marketing trends for 2013 and learn how to leverage these trends in your direction.
Visuals Have Become VERY Important
Visuals have always been important in inbound marketing, but their importance increased exponentially in 2012. With powerful visual platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram, visuals have taken off and have become one of the best ways to interest and engage your audience and draw them to your website and social pages. Since the platforms are so easy to use, there really is no excuse to not be providing great visual content for your viewers.
You may think creating quality visual content is a daunting task, but it really isn’t. Remember to keep it simple. If you have a website, be sure to include a visually appealing logo and design. You’ll also want to provide photos and pictures of you and your team when it is relevant and necessary. If you are putting together a blog, always be sure to include great visuals and infographics along with them to increase the quality of your content. On Facebook, you will want to share and post videos and images on a continuous basis.
Search Is Going Social
With the continuing meteoric rise of social media and the recent algorithm changes made by Google, social signals and influence have become much more important to search. There is still some fuzziness when it comes to the relationship between social media and SEO, but inbound marketers have managed to put together these tips to improve your search engine rank using social media.
- Integrate all of your social accounts.
- Create inbound links in your social channels.
- Constantly and continuously post quality, original content.
- Create an active presence on Google+
Google+ is not necessarily as popular as Facebook or Twitter, but since it is owned and run by Google, you might want to keep Google+ in mind.
Gamification is the concept of integrating game-like elements into marketing strategies. This has surprisingly proved to be a very successful way to generate interaction and engagement. One way a lot of marketers have used this is by using social media to reward fans based off of likes, comments, shares, and other social media activities. You can even take this a step further and implement similar ideas into apps or your website. Gamification is still a relatively new concept among marketers, so this should be interesting to watch play out over the coming months and years.
Mobile is Going Responsive
Responsive design has become extremely popular recently due to its ability to adjust to whatever device is trying to access it. It works across all platforms including desktop PCs, smartphones, tablets, and laptops. Responsive design can also make it a lot easier to update your website since you will no longer have a need for a mobile only domain. Industry experts see virtually everyone going responsive in the coming years.
Email is Still Alive and Kicking
It seems like every year now that people are saying that THIS year is going to be the year email finally dies. However, year after year, it refuses to kick the bucket and appears to be as strong as ever. Why? Because email has adapted and grown with new technologies and discoveries. To be blunt, email still hasn’t even reached its apex because marketers are still learning how to use it to its fullest capabilities.
Email is still email, but in order to use it effectively, companies must learn to approach it differently. The usual email blasts and impersonal messages aren’t going to work anymore. You, as a marketer, must learn how to create interesting and relevant content, target your efforts, and engage your recipients with personal messages. If you manage to pull all of these factors together, and do it well, you will be shocked at how effective your email campaigns have become.
Times are fast, and they are continuing to move even faster. This means that adaptation and flexibility are your two most important traits when it comes to navigating the digital and inbound marketing landscape. New trends are on the rise while other trends are dying out. It is your job to be able to recognize the difference between the two and apply that knowledge to your business. If you do, there is no stopping you and your business from becoming successful.
Certified Inbound Marketing Strategist | Content Marketing Specialist | Social Media Strategist | SEO