The marketing world is changing so rapidly, it can be hard to keep track of every new development. Unexpected elements like personalized experiences, that used to delight customers, are now considered more or less obligatory. A recent McKinsey study found that 76% of customers actually get frustrated when companies don’t deliver personalized interactions.
Customers also care more than ever that companies share and live up to their ethics and values. In fact, many customers are willing to ditch companies that treat the environment, employees, or the community in which they operate poorly. They’re more than willing to boycott companies that don’t demonstrate positive impact and social responsibility.
What all this means is that marketing is no longer about simply selling your product, brand, or company to your customers. Instead, it’s about getting deep into their psyches and figuring out how to offer them something they believe to be invaluable. It’s about making them feel known and understood, and catering to key needs and desires.
There are dozens of ways to execute marketing strategies that capitalize on these key concepts. But some seem more likely than others to take center stage in the next couple of years. AI and data, in particular, are poised to have the biggest impact on the marketing industry. Here are just some of the technology tools, strategies, and practices likely to be most crucial for marketing success in 2024.
Widespread regulations have limited the use of third-party marketing data, making it harder for brands to rely on tools like cookies. Some companies have revised their strategies to lean more heavily into new methods of data collection. But others are lagging behind, still struggling to make the leap into first-party data.
According to Hawke, making this shift into first-party data collection is essential. “This data is not only immune to these privacy changes,” says the company, “But also offers more accurate and reliable information.” Relying on first-party data also empowers your marketing team to offer more personalized, tailored interactions with your brand.
There are a number of different ways to get relevant first-party data from your customers. One is to ask them directly, through lead forms, surveys, user testing and feedback. You can also gather data from email marketing, by tracking click-through rates and other metrics. Social engagement and information shared with customer service reps and chatbots can also be invaluable.
Social Media And Influencer Campaigns
Social media is no longer just a nice-to-have for your marketing efforts. Most companies need to have a thoughtful, engaging, and audience-appropriate social media strategy. There are a lot of different ways to execute a successful social media marketing program. A social media campaign can be done mostly organically, or with paid ads and partnerships.
One of the easiest (and cheapest) ways to win on social media is to regularly update your accounts and get your loyal customers to follow you. To make this simpler, you can automate social media workflows using software that preschedules your posts. Next, share your social links on your website and in marketing emails. Finally, always make sure to always engage and interact with followers, by responding to any comments or DMs.
You can also consider taking advantage of paid ads on Facebook or Instagram, or trying out TikTok’s new Spark Ads. Even more ambitious brands should consider influencer and micro influencer campaigns and partnerships, which can be organized through an agency. But however you coordinate your social media strategy, make sure it’s authentic and resonates with your customers.
Killer Content Strategy
To market successfully in 2024, remember the saying “content is king.” Coined by Bill Gates in 1996, the phrase was the title of an essay predicting that most of the money generated online would come from content. And he was generally right, especially insofar as the power content has to engage potential customers with your brand. Now, it’s more important than ever to invest in a solid content strategy.
Your content strategy can include regular blog posts that share useful or topical information with the reader. They can be pegged to news stories, or offer practical how-tos on subjects pertinent to your potential clients’ areas of specialty. Content can also include other distribution channels like email, podcasts, or video presentations. For written content, SEO should be considered, but should never take precedence over the quality of your content.
The most important takeaway is that brands need to produce authoritative, original content that readers trust to give them the facts. Companies that consistently produce this kind of credible — and even journalistic — content gain their readers’ confidence, engagement, and loyalty. Any data or information you share should come from (and be linked to) reliable sources like published research or credible news sites.
Artificial intelligence will almost certainly form a crucial part of marketing strategy in 2024 and years going forward. AI is already revolutionizing everything from the way search engines work to how companies decide to route goods from factory to customer. To market successfully in this new AI world, companies will need to deploy this technology in various forms.
One way AI is useful in marketing is analyzing customer and competitor data. AI can sift through vast amounts of data, generating accurate predictions and customized recommendations in many fields. It can help make decisions like how to segment or format emails to get more click throughs and conversions. It can also help you analyze what your competitors are up to so you can outsmart them.
Another way AI might impact marketing is by bringing changes to the way that search and SEO work. For instance, marketers currently use things like keywords and formatting to get their content to the front of the SERP. But with more companies adopting conversational AI search, marketers will have to think about responding to queries with human-sounding, full-sentence. responses.
The Main Key To Marketing In 2024
There are obviously many more marketing technology tools to consider — everything from sales-savvy chatbots to immersive virtual reality experiences. But none of them will reach their highest potential without a bit of humanity at the center. That’s because, at the end of the day, core marketing principles haven’t changed — they’ve only gotten more sophisticated.
The most important thing to keep in mind, no matter what tools you use, is adding more and more value for the customer. Individual strategies will be relatively meaningless without a customer-centric ideology at the heat of your marketing efforts. When deploying any new marketing tool, from a blog to a high-profile influencer, always put your user first.