Marketing continues to evolve with every passing year. While some fundamentals might remain the same, many of the tools use to achieve our goals change from year-to-year. According to a study done by Hubspot, new marketing candidates are going to require technical skills. That same study also shows that market research skills will need to be expanded through the coming year.
This post will walk you through 4 of the best marketing tools you should master in 2018.
#1: Use the AI Revolution to Your Fullest Advantage
If you are one of the few entrepreneurs who have yet to embrace artificial intelligence, then it’s time you hop on-board. Start defending it rather than being sceptical. Start making AI work for you. Most importantly, decide how you are going to measure the success of your AI efforts.
AI isn’t some magical solution that will fix every challenge. It takes mastery to get the most from your AI efforts. Start with a few low-margin, low-risk areas and find some ways that AI could help improve them. Always start with the quickest wins first and then move onto larger, more expansive parts of your business.
A customer-first approach is usually a good philosophy. Master AI technology that dives deeper into your customer’s journey through the entire purchasing process.
#2: Take Advantage of Voice Search
Towards the end of 2017, we started to see voice searches become more mainstream. I expect that trend to grow throughout 2018 and beyond. In fact, voice search is likely going to be the next huge technological step. 20% of all Google searches are now done through voice queries.
Look no further than companies like MapQuest to see that businesses are starting to evolve into a more voice oriented strategy in mind. If you want an early edge on your competition, then you should adapt this same mindset. Voice searches are going to be based around much different keywords than traditional searches because people say things differently than they type them. Imagine if you could rank on page one of these rankings.
The majority of voice searches are conversational. By understanding this fact, you will be able to tailor content around more conversational keywords.
#3: Learn to Fully Incorporate SMART Content
This is where you will need to switch your focus from mass production into more performance-driven approach. This is where you’re going to see the most impact through the coming year.
Poor content performance is a big challenge that marketers must overcome. It’s not enough that you have a lot of content. You want the majority of that content to be consumed. SMART content has the same context as SMART goals.
Start creating content that is:
- Targeted to your Ideal Customer
- Solves a Specific Problem
- Optimised in a Way That’s Discoverable
- Adaptive and Relevant
- Integrated in a Measurable Way (link tracking, etc.)
- Has an Effective Call-to-Action
#4: Utilise Smart Hashtags
Finally, we come to the powerhouse of the social marketing world. The mighty hashtag has spread onto every social media platform. As a digital marketer, you have no choice but to adopt them.
Smart hashtags are used to track results. We see television shows use specific hashtags for each episode – something that only viewers would understand. Your brand will need to find a similar strategy. Each marketing campaign you launch should come with several unique hashtags.
Smart hashtags allow you to easily track and analyse which channels are getting the biggest audience.
Are you prepared to effectively market in 2018 and beyond? Feel free to comment below and share your ideas.