There seems to be an overabundance of ‘trend’ and ‘digital trends for 2018’ articles doing their rounds. We know. So, we decided to distill them and this is our pick of the Big 5 influencers for 2018 and beyond. Quick & easy to digest.

Trend #1:  Live video content will continue to grow.

Facebook recently announced a significant change to their News Feed Algorithms that will shift the type of content users see in their news feeds to be from their friends and family – instead of the Business Pages they follow. This means that posts generating the most conversation will rank higher. And Business Pages will lose more visibility on News Feeds. Apparently, this is an attempt to safeguard against fake news and hateful content, for which the platform has recently been under scrutiny for. Publishers who traditionally have crafted their content for Facebook and rely on the traffic it generates are pretty aggrieved.

Digital trend video Camera

According to Facebook, videos rank highest and live videos receive 6 times the engagement vs. non-live ones. Virtual Reality will also be utilized more to create richer consumer experiences. The advances in augmented reality and virtual reality are mind-blowing. As we speak these technologies are being designed to improve our lives. Over the next decade the way we interface with digital information will no longer be screens and hardware but gestures, emotions, and gazes. Find out more about Tech Trends 2018 from Deloitte Digital.

Take a look at how Kinset created a virtual shopping mall (see a video here) where users can walk into different stores and view the shelves populated with products. It isn’t a stretch to see this expanded into an idea where users can interact with each other and walk into a wide variety of buildings, some of which might even enable the buying of products.

Trend #2:  Messaging apps will become key in communication

Remember in one of our recent blogs we shared Facebook’s launch of Messenger Advertising. Well, Messenger Apps are here to stay and may start overshadowing social networks for brands. Messaging Apps are used by 4 billion people globally. Many brands are using this service to provide more instant responses to customers one on one. It’s a great tool to deliver personalised customer service.

The Hyatt Hotel group are using Facebook Messenger for 24-hour customer service, where guests can make reservations, ask questions, and get recommendations for their trips. Going forward marketers should anticipate less social networking, especially considering the recent Facebook changes, and a steady increase in the use of Messaging apps that offers a real-time connection with their audience.Trend Facebook messenger ads logo

Trend #3:  Content Marketing that sets you apart

With the proliferation of online and mobile advertising banners that are now commoditised, users are starting to demand more engaging experiences. Consumers are becoming more cynical. Brands will need to invest more in creating unique content rather than trying to create unique advertising.

Another driver of this trend is the growth in video consumption. Digital-video advertising is forecast to grow by 43% in the United States, against a mere three percent for TV advertising. According to World Wide Worx 2014, 58% of SA brands are now utilising YouTube as a marketing channel. With the advent of the Information Age, it also brings with it plenty of clutter. To cut through the clutter the challenge for content writers is not only to be engaging by using topics of inherent interest, but also to demonstrate the context of the brand.

trend content marketing content writing

Trend #4:  Personal privacy must be considered

The modern-day digital native is also in the data-collection realm. User data is paramount in informing marketers on how to be more astute about delivering the relevant experience to the targeted user. With the focus on data, consumers are becoming more aware of their personal privacy. They are auto-filtering brand information that doesn’t interest them. Over and above this, the POPI Act has come into play in South Africa in a bid to protect the consumer from the exploitation of personal data. This will fundamentally alter the way brands use consumer data and the way in which we communicate to consumers.

Trend privacy digital

Trend #5:  Mobile advertising will dominate

Mobile penetration in South Africa is 133%, meaning the majority of the population have more than 1 mobile phone. Smartphone penetration is at 47% but is predicted to grow as data costs fall and smartphones become more affordable. South Africans are also ‘more predisposed to receive advertising on their phones, compared with their global peers’, according to Price Waterhouse Coopers.

Globally, mobile advertising has nearly doubled. It’s predicted that Mobile will not only be the fastest-growing platform in the digital advertising game, it will dominate the landscape.

Your brand needs to stay relevant and on trend. Creative Imagineering is a team of geeks who make it our business to keep on trend in all things digital. We can partner with you to ensure your marketing campaigns are digitally integrated and optimised to maximise ROI. Email us.