We’re on the cusp of a brand new decade – one that is certain to bring some massive developments in digital marketing, SEO and social media if the last 10 years has been any indication.

As we all get stuck in to January and forge ahead with new plans, strategies and campaigns, Google has released a timely prediction of what it expects to see taking centre stage over the next 12 months. Read on to see if your plans match up, and discover a few new opportunities to leverage with additional tactics you haven’t yet considered, in our handy, digestible round-up…

  1. Video content will get shorter

Over the last 24 months, we’ve seen the Story format on social media gathering steam. These shorter, temporary videos have risen through the ranks to challenge traditional social media posts for viewer attention. This year, this snackable concept is also set to transition to ‘proper’ video with shorter formats and custom variations expected to be all-powerful. We may have TikTok to thank for this one!

  • More engagement for voice search

The buzz around voice search seemed to quieten a little last year, despite Google’s 2019 predictions tipping this medium for big things. The search engine isn’t backing down though and it’s included more engagement for voice search on its forecast for 2020 too. Google Spain’s head of consumer marketing, Manuel Roman says, “Voice assistants will become a much bigger engagement touch point for customers next year. At the end of 2021 there will be more than 1.6 billion people who use voice assistants on a regular basis, and their interests will not only focus on asking for time or sending an email.”

  • Digital transformation will become digital marketing transformation

Another expectation for 2020 is that digital technology will evolve to such an extent that many organisations will begin to think about the extent of their digital marketing maturity and consider ways to move this forward. Julia Solovieva, from EMEA emerging markets at Google Russia says they expect this to be a strong trend this year.

  • Diversity and Inclusion

Both diversity and inclusion, not to mention social responsibility, have been high on the radar and news agenda for at least the last 12 months. We’re increasingly seeing more social activism dominating our feeds. Consumers expecting the brands they buy from to match their ideals. Google Italy’s country marketing director, Vincenzo Riili explains that this will require brands to be authentic and to think outside of their own product or service portfolio to connect with audiences on topics that matter to them.

He says, “Today’s consumers want more than product information from brands. What they really demand is the brand’s perspective on topics that matter — and how they positively contribute. In 2020, a brand’s view on issues such as diversity and inclusion, climate change, and sustainability will become even more important.”

This could be one of the trickier trends for brands to navigate as it looks set to take many outside of their comfort zone.

  • Mobile maturity

Consumers aren’t yet shopping on mobile devices to the same extent that they do on desktops, though events such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday show that this behaviour is slowly shifting. As more consumers look to use their devices for actions such as subscriptions and purchases, they expect a seamless, frictionless experience. Technologies such as AMP and PWA are important here, along with methods of measurement and personalisation.

  • Transparency

This trend is closely tied to trend four, diversity and inclusion. Consumers increasingly want authenticity and accountability from brands, meaning there is now more pressure and expectation that brands are open and forthright about their contributions to society. Being socially mindful can be a big differentiator so this is a key trend to consider.

  • Personalisation gets bigger

We’ve previously noted how technology such as AI and machine learning is changing the role of the marketer and opening up new pathways for those who embrace it. One such impact that’s expected to make its presence felt this year is personalisation. Already an important consideration for today’s consumers, 2020 could be the year it goes to another level with machine learning allowing for personalisation at scale. Google Poland’s head of sales, Magda Kotlarczyk says this means “marketing more personal, human, and omnichannel.”

  • Image search to get its time in the spotlight?

Google’s UK and Ireland search lead, Gemma Howley says that images are an increasingly vital component of the search experience, with many users turning to images to help them make important decisions. Image search grew more than 60% in the two years 2016-2018 and Google teases that it will continue to help that figure increase in 2020 with visual search experiments. Watch this space.

  • Data-driven marketing here to stay

It’s by no means a new tactic but, expect to hear more – and potentially practise more – data-driven marketing in 2020. This will be driven by the greater adoption of machine learning and AI, two technologies that will put more useful user behaviour trends, data and predictive models in the hands of marketers.

  1. Creative-first strategies will be a 2020 buzzword

Expect to hear a lot more about ‘creative-first’ campaigns in 2020. These are campaigns that really strive to do something different, such as thinking of channels in different ways or developing new models of storytelling. It looks set to be a very exciting year, one packed with innovation, opportunity and creativity. Whatever your business, Adrac can help you to harness all of this potential with SEO, content, social media and PPC expertise. Contact us to find out more

Author Rebecca

More posts by Rebecca