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20th February 2015
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5 online marketing trends to watch in 2015
By Grant King, IndustraCom

In the dim, dark distant past before the Internet, consumers were exposed to hundreds or even thousands of advertising messages every day via radio ads, billboards, print ads or television commercials. Can you even begin to imagine what that figure is now?

With a mind boggling cyber-clutter of messages now jostling for pride of place in consumers' minds, brands are starting to smarten up. The 'Look at me!' online marketers of 2014 are set to become the 'Can I be your friend?' online marketers of 2015. How? Here are a few of the likely marketing trends coming soon to a digital device near you.

Brands will become fountains of knowledge
Content, content and more content. But not just any content; rich, informative and entertaining content. Marketers will seek to embrace and inspire consumers with material they find relevant and useful. The more relevant and useful a brand can make itself, the more consumers will snuggle up to it – a cunning way to build loyalty without the more traditional bombardment of advertising messages.

Writers will do the writing
The years of the Word Factory are well behind us, and 2015 will be the year of the Word Smith. No longer will it be okay to pay sweatshop rates for dire content designed to do nothing but fool Google and ramp up rankings. Buyers are smarter than that. They are also exposed to an endless stream of words online, most of which are closer to rambling than rational. Marketers who treat their audience with respect and create interesting content – no matter how dry the subject matter – will gradually work their way to rush hour traffic.

Subtle will replace blatant
Online advertising in 2015 will be less in-your-face and more in-your-faculty. Interesting and cleverly enticing advertorial, sponsored content and branded content will drive the digital drag race for cyber-domination. Marketers won't just seek attention, they'll seek affection. And even paid content will try its best to say 'How can I help you?' – not just 'Buy me!'

Marketers will give credit where it's due
People consume marketing messages through radio, television, newspapers, online audio streaming, email newsletters and more. The problem with many of these mediums is that you can't always track their true performance. Buyers may only contact the advertiser hours, days or even weeks later – and when they do, who gets the credit for the enquiry? Often it's Google, but the reality is your overall digital presence may have done the crucial grunt work. In 2015 marketers will look for ways to link marketing efforts more directly to key calls to action.

The year of words starting with D
In 2015 data-driven digital marketing won't get any easier to say fast, but it will become an integral part of the online drive for sales. Love it or loathe it, our every move around the net is being watched, logged and used to tell us exactly what we want exactly when we want it. It's cunning and some might say a little creepy, but it's about as powerful and specifically targeted as advertising can ever get. After all if it isn't measured, it isn't managed. Marketers ignore data at your peril.

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