Word of mouth or viva voce is no longer the speed at which information travels. Information travels at the speed of light. An incident on a street in Los Angeles can now be streamed live to a global audience in real-time by anyone.

In a world where new innovations pop up almost on a daily basis, how do you come up with a cogent social media marketing strategy when new technologies that you need to compete effectively are still on the drawing board?

social marketing strategry

With all the new trends, you need an abundant and constantly updated source of marketing and consumer trend information. No source is more incisive and definitive than the Data and Marketing Association’s (DMA) Statistical Fact Book (SFB). The SFB comprises over 400 pages and charts that are arranged by channel. Numerous insight reports and company perspectives are also included in the report.

The following is a summary of six of the major social media trends that are shaping social media marketing strategy as reported in the 2017 DMA SFB.

1. In-Store Marketing

According to the SFB, 80% of millennials using their phone in-store and 74% of millennials willing to receive location-based mobile alerts. This is a fantastic opportunity to provide customers with relevant product content right at their fingertips. Several big companies are using this tactic with great success. It is even being used to provide customers with offers as they physically walk through the different product sections in brick and mortar stores. Beacon technology is making it possible to place relevant offers in customer smartphones.

2. Invest in Social Analytics

Despite the massive growth of social media, it’s still in its nascent stages. This may sound controversial but it actually is a fact. Consider this; according to the SFB, only 30 percent of companies are collecting social media data. This gap will soon close as more companies realize the importance of social analytics. The SFB also notes that 37 percent of companies view email and websites as the important opportunity followed by 26 percent who consider SEO to be more important.

3. Increase Your Focus on Video

You have likely observed how video is taking over social media. In fact, live video has become so pervasive that even criminals are using it to broadcast crimes online. Almost ten billion videos are watched online everyday. Four times as many consumers prefer watching a product video over text. Facebook Live and Periscope have made it easier for brands to connect with fans in real-time. Another area where video is being accelerated is programmatic video. Programmatic video allows marketers to use software to buy digital video advertising. The advantage of programmatic video is that it uses real-time data to display at the most opportune time. More timely, relevant and responsive ads will be the most successful in future.

4. Really Focus on Programmatic

And, programmatic ads aren’t just growing in video but pretty much all the advertising market. These type of ads are growing a lot faster than other types and have already captured 50 percent of all ad spend in display. In mobile, the total programmatic spend was 69% of all mobile ad spend in 2016.

5. Get Ready for Cross-Device Marketing

According to the SFB, the average consume is now connected to the Internet through several devices. At any one time, a consumer will shuttle between a smartphone, tablet, laptop and desktop. These are multiple opportunities to get your product offering in front of the eyes of the consumer.  But, in order to effectively market to them, marketers must be able to recognize that this is the same consumer and engage with them in a meaningful personalized manner. The problem is that 69 percent of companies have not aligned their data for cross-device communication which creates hurdles.

6. Invest in Technical Acumen

The SFB reports that the top talent being hired today is in the fields of mobile, app development and website design. A third of top executives say lack of employable skills is hindering them from improving data quality. In order to make sense of social media data and upcoming marketing technologies, you must invest in the right people. The right people will get your the right results.

Conclusion

These are the main points from DMA’s 2017 Statistical Fact Book. To keep yourself regularly apprised of developments on the Internet, social media and upcoming martech, you can always get yourself a copy.

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