If you search the Internet for “What is marketing,” you’ll find numerous definitions – some current and some not so current.
For digital marketers today, the definition of marketing holds to the tenants of the past (the act of promoting or selling products and services), but it incorporates a much more modern outlook.
Wikipedia tells us that marketing is “the study and management of exchange relationships.
The American Marketing Association defines marketing “as the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering and exchanging offerings that have value for your customers, clients, partners and society at large.”
These more modern definitions more accurately define marketing in 2017. As a marketer, your most important goal is to understand your audience because this is how you reach them.
In this article, we look at what you need to know about marketing in 2017 and beyond so you can build a loyal customer base and continue to build your business.
Instant Gratification Matters
Today’s Millennial generation is a driver in our modern society. As a whole, this group wants what they want when they want it. This has trickled down to other sections of society as well.
Blame it on Millennials or the digital age, it doesn’t much matter. What does matter to you as a marketer is that people don’t like waiting. They want immediacy.
If you want to satisfy your customers and engender their trust, do what you can to ensure their needs are met instantaneously.
How can you do this in your marketing? Here are a few tips:
- Respond to social media comments immediately.
- Provide downloadable resources on your website.
- Create videos that highlight how to use your products or services.
Your customers are on social media, and as the largest social media platform with more than one billion users, if you aren’t on Facebook, you need to be in 2017.
You can engage, connect and amuse your customers on social media, and Facebook is the king of the hill.
What’s more, in 2017, you’ll see more businesses harnessing the power of Facebook paid advertising. It’s an incredibly cost-effective way to market your business online and connect with your customers.
With paid advertising, you can also re-market to your website visitors and even extend your ads to Instagram while creating custom audiences. This allows you to meet the right people with the right message.
Are we suggesting that you should leave out the other social media platforms in 2017? Not at all. Facebook is simply a great place to start.
When deciding on the other platforms you’ll be active on, know your target audience. Know where to find them, and then get to work building your audience there as well.
Expect content to continue to lead digital marketing in 2017. But, we want to be clear, while content is blogs, articles and whitepapers, it is actually much more.
Content is anything you provide your customers that meets their needs, engages them and is relevant to their interests.
For example, perhaps you offer a cost-savings calculator on your website – this is great content. Or, you offer a how-to video describing in detail how to open a swimming pool for the summer – more great content.
As you move forward into 2017, concentrate on providing content to your customers in the way of tools that provide an answer to their question or a solution to their problem.
Podcasts, videos, downloads, articles, blogs, live streaming, infographics, email newsletters and more make up the broad definition of valuable content.
We’ve discussed what you need to know about marketing in 2017, and now it’s time to put it into action.
Create a marketing strategy and work it throughout the year. Test and test some more. Use what works and fine-tune it for the best success.
Just remember that the key to marketing in 2017 is about flexibility. Digital marketing is an ever-changing platform, and it’s up to marketers to be flexible and adapt.
Your flexibility will lead you to great results in 2017!
Engage your customers in 2017 with a social media marketing strategy that drives growth. If you’d like help crafting posts that persuade and engage, we can help. We’ll provide customer-focused and engaging posts that encourage trust and a connection with your business.
We are here for you when it comes to your social media posting. We’ll study your brand, and create posts that work with your overall social media posting strategy. Learn more about our services and how we can create engaging content that your customers will enjoy and appreciate.
Image: Brigitte Tohm