If you are a business owner, you’ve already realized that digital marketing (social media, blogging, local SEO, etc.) is much more cost-effective and delivers more trackable results than traditional marketing (television ads, radio spots, billboards, etc.).
But given how quickly things change in the advertising world, how long will this be the case? Is digital marketing going to stick around, or will something shiny and new take its place in the next few years?
Let’s take a look at where digital marketing is now, and where we can expect it to go in the future.
Digital Marketing: Where Search Is King
According to Forrester’s Consumer Technographics data, as of 2015, 49% of U.S. consumers reported the use of search engines to gather information about brands, services, and/or products that they are considering.
If we use their 2016 numbers, then there are approximately 3.4 billion users in the global online population, which – keeping the 49% statistic from 2015 – would mean that 1.7 billion people are using search engines to find products or services just like yours.
Take into consideration the fact that the global online population is expected to rise to 4.2 billion in 2019, and you’re looking at 2.1 billion people doing research via search engines.
When we compare the influence of search engines with traditional marketing, we find that search engines are far more influential: 19% of consumers identified it as the most influential factor in their decision, compared with just 7% for traditional media.
So how can your business show up in search results? We’re glad you asked.
Harnessing the Power of Local SEO
Whether your goal is to be discovered by new customers, to remain top-of-mind for future customers, or to maintain the customers you have, grabbing a seat at the top of local search results is essential.
In order to do this, you need to know how people are finding you. Website analytics and search engine-side analytics can help you understand information about your traffic, like what people are searching for when they find you and what they’re doing once they get on your site.
Boosting your ranking on search engines like Google takes time, patience, and intentional marketing strategies like fresh content and proper keyword placement. If done correctly, your business could be enjoying a top spot in local search results, which can have a significant impact on your ROI and your new customer conversions – and given the way search has picked up in recent years, we’re expecting it to be even more important in the future.
A Digital-Native Audience
Millennials (consumers between 18-35 years old) are beginning to live in a higher-spending stage of life as they establish careers, buy homes, and start families. They are now the largest living generation, spending $600 billion annually.
As this group settles into adulthood, digital marketing will continue to grow, with marketers shifting away from volume and towards quality. Brands will begin to increase their digital budgets in order to connect with an audience that understands technology innately and searches daily for products and services online.
Video marketing will play a significant role in this increased spending, as large and small advertisers love the reachability of online video. Spending in this sector is already up 114% since 2014, offering larger companies the ability to extend their traditional methods to digital easily, and giving smaller operations the chance to have a TV-like presence without the substantial cost.
Spending Projections for the Next Five Years
When we look at the path that leads to 2021, we see companies investing heavily in paid search, social media advertising, display advertising, online video advertising, and email marketing. In fact, we see it accounting for up to 46% of all advertising within the next five years.
If current spending trends hold steady, then investments in digital marketing in the United States will reach $120 billion by 2021.
Will Your Business Be Ready?
Uptick Marketing is dedicated to helping your business succeed by taking advantage of the power of digital marketing. We’re passionate about giving you the best ROI possible, and we believe that with digital marketing, your business can see a significant increase in website traffic and lead conversions – with far less cost than traditional methods.
Take a look at our case studies to see what we mean, and contact us when you’re ready to start a conversation about taking your business’s marketing strategy to the next level.