Most smart business owners review their online marketing strategies on a very regular basis. This is something that simply needs to be done, because the effectiveness of different techniques and approaches changes quite rapidly, and one style of engaging potential customers that worked great in 2013 (for example the Facebook fan page), may barely work at all in 2016.
Reacting to Change
Whether it is a change made by a major company like Facebook or Google, a new network becoming more prevalent, or simply a trend in user behavior, all of these changes are outside of the average business owner’s control, and so we have to be very reactive. For instance, if Google changes the way it displays local search results (as it did in 2015) and your business no longer makes it into the portion of the search results page that nets the most visitors, you have to react by changing your SEO and Google advertising plan to stop you losing out.
If you are currently going through a review process with a view to defining your 2016 advertising and online marketing plan, here are two things you may need to consider and react to this year:
Voice Search and SEO
In 2015, for the first time ever, there were more searches performed on mobile devices than on PCs. This trend is likely to continue, and as voice search becomes better with each generation of smartphones and tablets, as well as being offered on other devices people use to search the web like games consoles, you may have to start considering the differences between the search terms people use that relate to you when they are speaking as opposed to typing. This could mean a rethink of your keyword strategy, given people do tend to phrase their searches differently when they use a voice search.
More Social Media Platforms
Twitter and Facebook have become heavily saturated with businesses attempting to leverage the ‘free’ stuff they can do on there, and even paid advertising on these platforms has become hugely competitive. Now, many businesses are finding great success by doing marketing on other social networks like Pinterest, which have good, established user bases but tend to be more niche focused.
Learning about the wide range of fairly mature social media platforms you could be using to reach the people you want to attract to your business could help you define a great new marketing channel for 2016, and is something a lot of smart marketers will probably be doing (if they aren’t already).
These are just two things that may seem quite small, but can actually make the difference between being ready for shifts in how your target customers use the internet, and losing out to those who are. 2016 is likely to show continuations of the trends that have been going on subtly for the past two years, and these have been primarily movements toward mobile search, and away from the Facebook and Twitter ‘free for all’.