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The best way to ensure consistent success in your business is by staying on top of trends. More specifically, you need to prepare for any trends in the marketing world. In doing so, you guarantee your business is promoted as effectively as it can be in the current climate.

Keeping this in mind, I’ve come up with four of the biggest digital marketing trends to hit the scene in 2018. All four of these things need your full attention and investment. Check them out down below to see what they are and how your business benefits:

Video Content

Content is king in the digital marketing world, and this year will see a rise in one particular type of content; video. It’s fairly easy to see why people prefer video content over any other type of content. It’s easier to engage with and provides more entertainment value too. Video content has become popular thanks to the rise in ways in which this content can be produced.

Every social media channel has some type of function that allows you to create video content. YouTube is the most obvious place to go for full-length videos, while Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are all great for shorter video bursts.

Furthermore, you now have different types of video content that are becoming more worth your time in 2018. Live videos are definitely something your business should start thinking about this year. Start incorporating live videos into your social media strategy to increase engagement and provide a platform for releasing live news and announcements. You’ll find audiences are far more interested in something when there’s a live video attached rather than boring written content. The other big thing to prepare for is 360-degree videos. These videos are gaining more traction as more tech companies release devices that can take 360-degree videos. They’re fun for the viewer, which is why your business should consider adding them to your digital campaign.

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Voice Search Engine Optimization

As you may be aware, voice searches are becoming more and more popular as time moves on. There was a period where almost nobody bothered to use the microphone features on their phones, and asking Siri to Google things just seemed pointless. However, voice searches are popular thanks to the rise in smart speakers.

Smart Bluetooth speakers have worked their way into homes in the last year and are more popular than ever. One of their main functions is the ability to search for things online using a built-in microphone. As such, more and more people are doing this and the number of voice searches per day is increasing.

It’s predicted this trend will rise in 2018, and your business needs to prepare for it. This means having to conduct more SEO analysis and figuring out your top long tail keywords. When people use voice search, they typically search using long tail keywords and phrases. Start optimizing your pages for these types of search if you want to continue to dominate the search rankings in 2018.

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Social Media Influencers

There was a time when, if you wanted to market your business online, you had to rely on your own influence more than anything else. It was all about trying to grow your following and then using your followers to get the word out. These days, social media influencers are making life so much easier.

The role of an influencer is to help promote your business and use their following to get the word out. This is so beneficial for new businesses as they don’t have to necessarily rely on their own following. Instead, you will use an influencer with hundreds, thousands, or hundreds or thousands of followers. They post about your business, and loads of people see it. This helps you gain followers, customers, leads, and make more sales.

In 2018, it’s predicted that social media influencers will become even more influential. The growing trend amongst consumers is that they trust influencers more than they trust reviews. People form a bond with influencers, and they rely on them to point them towards the best products and businesses. So, to prepare for digital marketing in 2018, you need to start trying to work with more and more social media influencers.

YouTube Adverts

Back in the day, businesses relied a lot on TV adverts. It was a big thing if you could secure a prime time slot for a TV ad. These days, video adverts are more popular than ever – just not on TV.

Instead, the focus has shifted to YouTube. We’ve already touched upon this platform earlier, explaining how it’s a great place to create video content. But, YouTube videos can be monetized, meaning advertisers are allowed to run their ads before or during the video. It all happens through Google and their AdWords software. You create your adverts and then use the software to find the right places to run your ads. Essentially, you make the same ‘TV ad’ you’d have made in the past, it just goes on YouTube instead of network TV.

Why is this a trend? Because billions of hours of video content are consumed on YouTube every single day. Consumers are moving to online video rather than watching TV. Plus, you don’t have to pay for certain time slots for your adverts. They can theoretically be run on hundreds of different videos all at the same time. Your reach is far wider, meaning the results are better for your business.

If you asked me which four things you should invest in this year (in the digital marketing world) these are the four answers I’d give you. It’s clear that all four things are gaining popularity and this pattern will continue as the months go by. Even if they’re not massively dominant now, they will be by the end of the year. So, if you prepare for these trends, you ensure your business is in a far better position than your rivals. You’re riding the wave while they’re trying to swim upwards after the wave comes crashing down on top of them.