2016 has been a momentous year, for all sorts of reasons. And here at Forward Digital, as we gaze through the year end’s rough prism, we’re wondering what 2017 will bring and how we can continue to adapt our excellent service to ensure we’re adequately supporting our customers’ needs – whatever they may be. Here are our thoughts on 4 key trends for 2017…
Content, content, content
‘Content is king’ is a mantra so old it’s practically carved into holy stone; but, like all clichés, this one is rooted in truth, and content is going to continue to be central to brand performance in 2017. So what does content look like in 2017? As far as we’re concerned, excellent content is about absolute quality and, depending on the relevant market, a mixture of entertainment, information (it’s got to make a difference) and inspiration. We’re also well aware of the need to personalise content – depending on the visitor, the medium and the platform. Rich content, delivered with the individual user in mind, is where it’s at in 2017.
Social Media continues to be hugely influential as part of the marketing matrix, and the embeddedness in our everyday lives is something that’s going to increase as we move towards the end of the 2010s. We’re aware of the reach of social, and the ability to engage customers – both as outright consumers and as brand advocates in the area of social media amplification and remarketing. Much as with content marketing, we see 2017 as being about quality and moving beyond ‘presence for presence’ sake. And call us out for stating the obvious, but the big players for 2017? We reckon Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Mobile Marketing in 2017
2016 saw continued growth in the area of mobile internet use; 2017 is unlikely to be any different. And yet with the dominance of responsive design, some have taken their eye off the ‘mobile ball’ as it were, and conversion rates are a real problem. At Forward Digital we try to maintain a holistic approach to the customer journey, across platforms, and across devices. As such, we see mobile in 2017 being about retention – making sure the customer journey is smooth and holistic – about improving conversion (CRO), and about delivering excellent content in the best way possible.
Is it strange to think of Search Engine Optimisation as oddly quaint as we approach 2017? It seems part of the old ways of marketing, part of the dark arts, buried in the mists of time. But it would be foolish to ignore it, and the benefits a solid SEO strategy brings – in terms of traffic provision, and the impact on brand visibility and development. For 2017 we see search as being about a strong, varied backlink profile (as ever, as ever!) and maintaining a strong brand profile within search results – across a variety of media.