Emerging trends for Digital Marketing – Keep your eyes peeled..

stand out

Trousdale, S. (2015) details how exploiting the latest trends can help businesses stand out from the crowd. Rapidly changing environments within the digital world pose constant challenges to business in terms of which channel will make the biggest impact. However, on the other hand, rapid change has fuelled digital marketing with technology giants driving Facebook and Twitter. One factor that is continuously constant though is that there will be change. It is being aware of changes and how to utilize this which will make the difference.

This blog post will focus around the topic of emerging strategies for the Digital Marketing World which if read into appropriately could pose potential strategic advantages (hint hint!)


Through the use of big data, it is easier for brand interaction which is highly relevant and tailored to specific individuals to become input. Data providing information on individuals online, social behaviours, shopping history, preferences and tastes have been made available to businesses enabling businesses to strategically utilize this information and provide a more personalized touch to their endeavours. An example of a company who do this well are Amazon. See below.



Pay-to-display advertisements to consumers based off of previous interactions with the site are becoming popular. For example if a user didn’t complete checkout, websites such as AdRoll and Facebook Custom Audience enable ads to be displayed encouraging consumers to come back and complete purchases. I have experienced this quite a few times! Whenever I have been doing a (cheeky) shop but then realized I don’t need the item, put it back and then continued with my social media activities, occassionally the item will appear on Facebook and I always thought it was mere coincidence – how foolish was I!

User Generated Content

Advertising agencies and brandscan utilize their fan and customer base through using their authentic and original content to power their marketing campaigns. Also, through this, a wider sense of community can be established and maintained as consumers actually feel involved within a campaign. An example of this was the Lego phone case idea. See below.


Predictive Analytics

Gains, B. (2015) states that companies such as Lattice and Mintigo are helping B2B companies with better lead scoring and prioritization without hiring a team of data scientists to get those insights. As well as guiding future marketing activities like automated drip campaigns.


A lot more of digital marketing endeavours are focused around being human-centric and story focused content that conveys raw human emotion. Such as the Facebook advert below, posted both on Facebook and available on TV. Trousdale, S. (2015) detailed that companies should share more image/video based content such as the highlighted Facebook example as this increase engagement and boosts shareability.

Finally, Ryan, D. and Jones, C. (2009) state that expenditure on online advertising will continue to increase and that WOM and digital savvy consumers control the future as technology is enabling people to maintain this hold.

However, the hype cycle has been highlighted by Consult Club at IIMA (2015), developed by IT research and advisory firm Gartner for representing maturity, adoption and social application of specific technologies. This diagram aims to assess technologies and how they move through diferent phases of hype and indicate whether they are good short and long term. Most technologies in peak of their hype cycles today will plateau in terms of producticivity within two years thus making it hard to gain competitive advantages in fast paced environments such as this. Companies need to quickly adapt accordingly. However, this is simply a theory and it could be argued that it is very difficult to objectively estimate the current location of a technology in its hype cycle. See the model below.


Five phases of the hype cycle

So that marks the end of the emerging trends I have identified for 2015, let’s see how things pan out!


Consult Club at IIMA, (2015). Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies in Digital Marketing. [online] Available at: https://iimaconsulting.wordpress.com/2015/01/01/hype-cycle-for-emerging-technologies-in-digital-marketing/ [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

Gains, B. (2015). 10 Emerging Trends in Digital Marketing for 2015. [online] Referral SaaSquatch. Available at: http://www.referralsaasquatch.com/10-emerging-trends-digital-marketing-2015/ [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

Ryan, D. and Jones, C. (2009). Understanding digital marketing. London: Kogan Page.

Trousdale, S. (2015). What are the emerging trends in digital marketing?. [online] Businessinspiredgrowth.com. Available at: http://www.businessinspiredgrowth.com/business-insights/2015/01/22/what-are-the-emerging-trends-in-digital-marketing/ [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

Blogging about blogging and the benefits!

Okay, not necessarily blogging about blogging but I just love saying that whenever I get the opportunity to (Guilty!). Blogging does hold many benefits and you should definitely utilize the opportunity to start up a blog. Let me tell you why…

Eridon, C. (2013) details how blogging can help drive traffic to your website through organic searches. Each and every single indexed page is yet another cue to google that your site is active. Consequently, every new indexed page is another opportunity to show up within search enginges and drive traffic towards your website and for this to convert into sales. I’m guessing you get the gist of this now! Also no doubt, alarm bells are ringing that blogging is a worthwhile strategy to element. Slow your horses, we’ve only just begun!

Blogging is highly beneficial if you understand your audience and what exactly they are looking for. Following acquiring knowledge of this, the rest is (with the right knowledge), a piece of cake! (and I do love me some cake!).


So, as a business owner, blogging will enable you to share expertise and build credibility through the outlet of (you guessed it) blogging. It is through this outlet that you can show visitors to your site how much you know around said specific topic and consequently gain their trust by divulging valuable information on specific topics of interest. For example, as shown below, The Beauty Department’s example of how to contour, for all of the users interested, this provides a thorough step-by-step guide on how to complete this. Users comment asking questions and are responded to, leading to trust and future engagement to discover other methods of expertise.

makeup tutorial


Continuing from this, blogging will not only heighten consumer trust but will also encourage visitor engagement. Consistent blog posts with relevant, interesting topics will form relationships eventually with consumers and through these relationships and enhanced trust, it is possible for brand loyalty to be enhanced and sustained (which probably sounds like music to your ears!).

Orzan, M. et al (2009) detail how importantly, the conversational, colloquial and seemingly truthful character of blogs implies the authenticity and credibility of interpersonal communication and these attributes differentiates blogs clearly from most traditional marketing media further driving consumer engagement.

Demographic Targeting

In an attempt to add further depth to consumer engagement, demographic targeting can be assessed. Blogs can aid both targeting and outreach. For example; a hairdressing company posting specifically about varying hairstyles for the niche of those interested would of course be regularly updating engaging, real-life applications which are entertaining and informative all through the medium of something as simple as a set amount of blog posts per specified time-frame. Furthermore, through comments, it could be assessed what this demographic require. See the below example of a hairdressing blog in which consumers tell her what they like about her blog. One lady comments ‘Love this, I couldn’t agree with you more! I follow you on almost every platform, your work is very inspirational as a fellow hairstylist/ session hairstylist. I will admit I do missing out on liking a post or two because I now live in Dubai. The time difference + the randomness at which I check my Instagram, so I don’t see everything from a lot of the US based accounts I follow. Much love!!’


Olenski, S. (2014) states how relevant and popular social indicators can continue to increase in relevance relative to search engine optimizing and that true authority building and reputation management tactics have grown alongside this. Olenski then continues to use the example of Moz Blog; mentioning how Moz is a gateway into the largest and most established online marketing communities on the internet, hosted, coincidentially on their own branded web property.

moz blog

Engage with other experts

Once established and set up on a blog, it can be beneficial to engage with other experts, comment on their work, like their work. This is a great way of reaching out to other experts in your space and strategically building connections which could later benefit you such as their fans following you through promotion or so forth. However, it should be noted that most blogs won’t allow a comments section to be indexed therefore there is no use trying to publish content from this

Content Strategy

Take the time to develop an engaging content strategy. I posted a blog on how to enhance this previously, click here to read up on it. Naturally, the content of your blog is fundamental. if the content that you provide isn’t good enough and readers aren’t interested then no matter how hard you try, your efforts will be thwarted. Users will be disappointed, they will not share content and they will not return to your blog. Content will be only be read is quality si good and creates further value to the consumer. This can only be achieved through a target groups needs and interests being catered for.


Schneider, A. et al (2010) detail how blogging allows interaction with readers, which is what makes it a form of social media. Comments are important to see what interests readers. This information will help choose related topics that will continue to provide interesting content. Following this, information should remain accordingly focused.

HOWEVER, be aware that although comments provided can be nice and provide insight, it is also possible to receive content that is negative and could have a negative impact on marketing efforts. Furthermore, creating blogs for a set time period can be time consuming. It is absolutely vital to decide whether your company has the resources to invest within blogging. I mean, if you do, there’s some hella’ good benefits!

Aaaaand last, but certainly not least.

Host your blog on your website as this enables more creative freedom!

For an example of some really good business blogs, click here.

Thanks for reading, I hope that you took something away from todays blog! And as I like to end on a positive note, here is an example of a successful blog; Perez Hilton’s website/blog and yes, I’m guilty of reading the occasional post! A lot of shares, ‘buzz’ and so forth. He knows what his demographic wants; celebrity gossip, outrageous comments, not afraid to test the waters. His content keeps users interested, wanting to share and stay on top of celebrity gossip. Furthermore there is an added element of humour which further interests fans and keeps them returning to read more and share content.


Until next time, HAPPY BLOGGING!


Eridon, C. (2013). The Benefits of Blogging: Why Businesses Do It, and You Should Too. [online] Blog.hubspot.com. Available at: http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/the-benefits-of-business-blogging-ht [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

Olenski, S. (2014). Three Hidden Benefits Of Blogging For Marketers. [online] Forbes. Available at: http://www.forbes.com/sites/steveolenski/2014/03/13/three-hidden-benefits-of-blogging-for-marketers/ [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

Orzan, M. et al (2009). BLOGGING: AN EFFECTIVE TOOL OF INDUSTRIAL MARKETING. Web of Science. 14(9), 153-157.

Schneider, A. et al (2010). Social Media Networking: Blogging. The Journal of Medical Practice Management : MPM. 26.2, 82-5.


Content marketing? Content strategy? Whaaaaat?

What’s the big deal about content marketing anyway?

Well, figures provided by Chang, S. (2013) detail that 86% of B2C companies in 2013 were planning to keep or increase their content marketing budget with 54% of B2B companies planning to do the same (see the graphs below). This demand is ever-increasing and surely this increasing figure should be accompanied by research and learning about the opportunities that content marketing can bring to you. Luckily you can fast-forward, I have done some research and have compiled two useful frameworks together and some tips I have found centred around the topic. Don’t say I don’t spoil you!


The Guardian (2015) details content marketing as ‘all about creation of good content that attracts and engages with a target group’ – in other words, it is about communicating with target consumers without the actual sales pitch. All digital marketers (who, of course, are used to social media channels and so forth), this blog post is directed heavily to you with all of the content you work with on a daily basis. Content, content, content. Now let’s delve into this, hand in virtual hand.

First things first..
Before you can even contemplate creating content, you have to know what kind of content it is that you wish to create. I mean, you don’t want to blindly dive into the online sphere spurting random content left, right and centre, do you? Think about it. Hard. Of course me just saying that isn’t going to aid you at all so I have seperated the thought processes up and found some useful tools to further aid you.

1. Consumers. Your target audience.

This is probably a good place to start as no doubt the content which you edit will be targeted towards the beautiful, beautiful beings known to you and I as; The Consumer.

Patel, N. (2014) provided a framework for buyer personas. This framework can be used to efficiently specify exactly what you aim to target towards consumers. They are fictionalized representations of your ideal customers so fantasize away! This will of course need to be enhanced by market research and insight gathered from a consumer base. As the template states (consumer surveys are a good starting point!). See below for the framework that will guide this.


Furthermore, The Guardian (2015) provided some simple but key questions to help aid your brainstorming around content. See below.
1. Who do I want to target?
2. Is there a specific topic or niche where we want to excel?
3. What do I want those I target to associate with our brand?
4. What information are my customers looking for?
5. What type of content do my customers look at?
6. How can I keep existing customers happy?
7. How can I attract new customers?
8. What do we like/dislike about competitors content strategy?
9. Is there anything I do not want to highlight about our brand?
10. What overall business objective do I want to achieve from my content marketing? What are our KPIs?

These are relatively similar in terms of targeting consumers however these questions add some depth and flavour (in the form of attracting new customers, competitors content strategy and KPI’s with objectives). This will enable a more forumlated structure and plan for the pinultimate content strategy to be implemented.  Furthermore, which channels do you aim to attract these consumers through? Rowley, J. (2008) details how the optimum business model for many providers of digital content is likely to depend on achieving a balance between their portfolios delivered through different channels. Although deciding which channel can be quite difficult, especially nowadays with so many social media channels available. click here for a social media comparison tool.

Once these questions have been answered significantly and thoroughly enough to meet the business aims of your organisation and you have a firm idea of the message and group to be targeted, you’re slowly but surely (hopefully) onto a winner!

2. Data Collection (make sure you’re prepared for this stage cos’ there’s lots of it).

Following the idea of the message to be targeted and who specifically you wish to target, it’s time to gather some data and see if this is synonymous with your proposed ideas. Of course you probably know what data collection entails but just incase your mind went a little blank. Here are some examples of what to begin researching (in depth and in line with your business objectives!!)

  • Competitor analysis
  • Keyword research
  • Market research
  • Customer Surveys

3. Analyzing and Assessment

Once we have thorough data collected, what will come next? Ah, yes! Analyze. It’s now time to create benchmarks and put together a content audit to display how the site is performing and how you intend to enhance this. How the site is performing will be measured through vital metrics such as Analytics metrics and SEO metrics and following this, the content funnel can be used (see below).


Where exactly does the company sit withn this for each different section of the funnel? The content funnel aims to assess the distribution of content on the channel and if this needs improving i.e. if there are any gaps. Once this has been completed it is officially time to clarify your goals (potentially based on the gaps of the funnel that you are not fulfilling) based upon this assessment/analysis and come to a conclusion with very clear, specific goals. Metrics for each of these goals are to be conducted and on you begin!

Hopefully these tips have made it easier for you to implement and structure the beginning of your content cos’ I mean we’ve all got to start somewhere, right? I’d like to end on a positive note, a great example of content marketing provided by Buzzfeed (a media company) who posted tis heartwarming content that is easily shareable. N’awwwwwww, cute.


For some more examples of good content marketing, click here.

Oh, and how could I forget, GOOD LUCK!!


Chang, S. (2013). How to Build a Content Marketing Strategy. [online] Moz. Available at: http://moz.com/blog/how-to-build-a-content-marketing-strategy [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

Rowley, J., 2008. Understanding digital content marketing. Journal of Marketing Management. 24(5-6), pp. 517 – 540

Patel, N. (2014). How to Create a Content Strategy That Actually Drives Organic Traffic. [online] Blog.hubspot.com. Available at: http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/create-content-strategy-drive-organic-traffic [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].

The Guardian, (2015). Developing a coherent content strategy. [online] Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/media-network-outbrain-partner-zone/developing-a-coherent-content-strategy [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].


Skip to toolbar