Hot on the heels of his presentation at Digital Evolution 2014, Dr Dave Chaffey delves even deeper into the digital marketing trends of next year…

Each year, at the turn of the year, I review the latest trends in Digital Marketing to help businesses focus on key digital technologies and marketing techniques to grow their businesses. I recently presented some of these key trends at the ClickThrough Digital Evolution conference in Birmingham, and we thought it would be also useful to cover them in this blog post for those who didn’t attend or those that did who want a little more detail.

Since new, untested, marketing techniques aren’t unlikely to be those which drive the best levels of volume and quality of visits to a business, the trends include a mix of new issues in managing existing channels and completely new options.

In reality the main top-level trends, the ‘Usual Suspects’ are similar each year, for example, content marketing and mobile were key issues when we ran a poll of Smart Insights readers looking ahead to 2013 and were also top when looking ahead to 2014. So, the Slideshare I have prepared drills deeper to show which specific digital marketing technologies and techniques will be important trends in 2014.

You can see that the 22 trends I review in the Slidedeck are structured across the 5 areas that need to be managed in a digital plan summarised by the RACE Planning mnemonic I have developed.

Plan – trends to manage digital marketing

The discussion of Modern Marketing outlined by Econsultancy reminds us we need to avoid creating digital marketing silos and integrate digital channels with traditional channels as part of managing omnichannel marketing which is a buzzword we can expect to continue to see used in 2014. Customer experience management (CXM) techniques such as customer persona creation and touchpoint mapping can help create experiences and communications that improve the online value proposition or YouTility I covered in the talk.

Reach – trends to support growth in awareness and visits

In the conference Peter Philpott and I talked less about dealing with Google’s new algorithms and more on trying to review and improve performance given Google’s increase in Not Provided keywords.

I also talked about using attribution models in Google Analytics to assess media effectiveness and increasing micro-targeting using paid and owned media, particularly given the new ad options available within social media.

Act – encouraging interaction and participation through digital experiences

Content marketing consistently tops polls and surveys of changes in investment in modern marketing, so in this section are talked about options for using more visual, interactive content using the Content Marketing matrix to review the options for different types of customer. I also mentioned the importance of investing sufficient time in outreach and partnership.

Convert – increasing conversion rates

The talk and Slideshare also covers approaches to increase structured tests and experiments to review and improve sales from web and mobile sites. Alan Rowe gave lots of good examples of persuasion techniques on different types of sites and talked about the challenges of building mobile experiences.

Engage – improving long-term customer engagement, satisfaction and advocacy

In the Engage section, I briefly mentioned the value of going beyond the hard numbers from analytics and looking at more qualitative interactive customer feedback tools. Finally I talked about the continued effectiveness of email marketing and ways to use behavioural emails to improve effectiveness.

I hope this summary proves interesting and helpful as you plan changes in investment in 2014.

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About the author:

An acknowledged expert on digital marketing, Dave was recognised in 2004 by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of “50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have shaped the future of Marketing“. Dave is also author of five best-selling books including Internet Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice; and eMarketing eXcellence.