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Our Top 4 Digital Marketing Trends to Watch for 2019

The start of each new year so often feels like a blank slate. A chance to try new things. Like the first rain after a long, hot summer, it washes everything clean. We all start January feeling bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, only to start to wonder if it really is a fresh start… or rather just a continuation of the previous year. The bad news is it’s kind of both, right?

When it comes to marketing, the start of a new year often means a shift in marketing. New contracts are in place, new projects are on the docket, and businesses are looking at the ways they want to improve in the next 12 months. It’s easy to set big goals for your business, but it takes work to achieve those goals.

One thing that helps us when it comes to adjusting marketing (both for ourselves and our clients) is keeping an eye on trends in digital marketing. What’s going to be the big shift in 2019? What is going to cause digital marketing to keep changing? Because if we know anything, we know that digital marketing is shifting sand: staying on top of the latest version of Google’s algorithm, as well as up-and-coming social networks, trends in Paid Advertising, and more, is important to achieving our goals, as well as helping clients achieve theirs.

Over the last few months, we’ve seen some huge shifts in digital advertising—influenced, of course, by internet culture. If you’re curious about how to make your goals for 2019 more achievable, we recommend paying close attention to these trends.

Trend #1: Voice Search

Did you know that in 2018, nearly 40% of adults performed internet searches by voice? Whether they were asking Siri, shouting “Alexa!” across the room, or accidentally activating their Google Home while singing along to the radio, voice search was a big deal. Take it from one of the biggest memes of the year: that’s so sad, Alexa play Despacito.

Not convinced? Studies have shown that by 2020, most searches will be performed by voice.

You might be wondering, what does this mean for your marketing? And the truth is, it means a lot. Firstly, when you’re talking to Alexa or Siri, you ask for a search differently than you would if, say, you were typing it on your phone’s browser. That means search phrases and keywords will become more nuanced.

As an example, instead of searching “coffee shops Eugene, Oregon” into a browser, you would instead say, “Siri, what’s the closest coffee shop to me?” That means searches will depend on longer keyword phrases, as well as geotagging.

This also means in that in terms of SEO content, content that is conversational and casual will be more effective that website content that focuses primarily on keywords.

These changes in tone, structure, and more will need to be made to your website content to ensure that it meets user expectations—and can be read aloud by these digital assistants. In the coming months, we’ll be doing more research here at Lunar Logic to help determine the best route of action for clients and their website content. Stay tuned!

Trend #2: Increased Focus on Video

In 2017 and 2018, nearly ⅓ of all activity on the Internet was watching videos.

From Instagram to Facebook to YouTube, internet users watch a lot of video content.

In fact, Facebook videos have become increasingly popular—in fact, you’ve probably seen one. Whether they are stop-motion cooking videos from Buzzfeed’s incredibly popular Tasty brand or funny Snapchat-style videos from self-styled comedians on Facebook, you’ve probably watched at least one video on Facebook in the last week. And if you’re like me, you’re slightly addicted to scrolling through Instagram watching videos of makeup, slime, or food.

You know what makes videos on social media platforms unique? Most of them are watched without sound. That’s right: the most popular videos on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and more are watched without sound, which means captioning videos is becoming increasingly popular.

Video content is shared so much more than photo and text content, it’s actually a little ridiculous.

This is all to say: the internet loves videos, so if you’re not using videos in your marketing, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity. Videos increase leads and conversions by nearly 66%; conversions increase by 80% on landing pages that use video content; and marketers that use videos get nearly 41% more traffic from organic search.

In 2019, video will only increase in popularity. It’s not a guess, really; it’s just a fact. From video advertising to vlogs to videos on social media, video dominates the internet. That means it should also dominate your digital marketing.

Trend #3: User Experience

For years, SEO has primarily been focused on the keyword. Using the right keywords, tracking the right keywords, designing content focused on keywords… the keyword was the focus.

When we wrote about readability and SEO, we talked a little bit about user experience. But in 2019, we think this will become increasingly important.

Already, voice search is changing the way keyword phrases (or strings) work. But the Google Algorithm has been favoring content that is written in a readable way for several years already, making keyword stuffing obsolete.

Content that is conversational, informative, and friendly will provide a better user experience—providing users exactly what they’re looking for.

But user experience isn’t just about content. It’s about everything related to your website. Users, more than ever, are being picky about the websites they use, the links they click, and more. What does this mean? More than ever, your website needs to be SEO-optimized, especially in terms of load times and design. (Google, specifically, has been increasing penalties to websites that are slow-loading.)

This is all to say that it’s becoming more important than ever to ensure your website is designed and built in a way that makes it easy for users to use. It’s not just about having the slickest website, the best plug-ins, or keyword-focused content; it’s about ensuring that your website is exactly what you’re ideal customer wants.

Trend #4: Humor in Marketing

When it comes to social media, the funnier you are, the more likely to are to gain a following.

And yet, why are most brands so… dull on social media? We mean that in the nicest way possible, of course. For so long, so many businesses and brands have felt the need to keep their social media as professional as possible—and we totally agree! But there is a reason why individuals do better on social media than brands: they can be authentic, honest, and, most importantly, funny.

It goes without saying that there are ways to be funny on social media that aren’t offensive. Using popular memes to your advantage, telling jokes, sharing pieces of company culture, and more can all be funny without making your potential customers mad. (And it goes without saying: if a simple joke makes a customer mad, then they were probably looking for something to get mad about!)

Without sounding too dry and boring, humorous social media posts are pretty much guaranteed to get higher levels of engagement: from sharing to liking to commenting. It’s just the truth!

Want More?

Here are a few more blog posts to help you start 2019 right.

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