With 2012 just days away, Experian offer their thoughts as to what the digital and marketing community can expect to see from the next year.
Search is well established as the number one online source of traffic but as people’s Internet browsing habits become more diverse, search is gradually becoming less dominant as a provider of traffic.
Video is one of the fastest growing media online and in the last year we’ve seen visits to online video sites grow by 36%. There are 785 million visits to online video websites every month, and if the growth trajectory continues throughout 2012 then we expect to see a new milestone of 1 billion visits to video sites a month sometime next year. As people consume more video content online, brands should increasingly be looking to use video as a core part of their digital strategy. Online video can be used to build brand awareness, bring traffic to a website, demonstrate a product or service or attract a new online audience.
2012 is likely to be a year of consolidation rather than innovation . That is not to say mobile marketers won’t keeping innovating, but now the hype has settled down the focus will be on establishing standards and best practices. There is now a relatively stable environment in terms of devices and platforms, upon which mobile marketers can get down to the hard graft of making campaigns that work. Mobile advertising will address robust impression tracking, mobile email will establish correct rendering best practices, mobile marketing will finally figure out whether QR codes are worthwhile and mobile developers will shift to developing cross platform applications.
Mobile networks are likely to throttle consumer mobile data over their networks. A short term solution to their ageing infrastructure, it may cause a shift in user behaviour to become less reliant on the networks and instead move towards wireless wherever possible. In doing so, consumers are likely to increase their use of VOIP and instant messaging platforms like WhatsApp and BBM, threatening the mobile network core services.
In the world of online advertising, audience targeting will become ever more important and sophisticated. Advertisers will start looking to break through the current fragmentation in online targeting and bring their customer’s online personas into the same parameters as their CRM and offline data. That is not to say we will see a lack of development in the tools and technology used to plan and deploy online advertising campaigns, but the real story is around who you’re targeting, not how you reach them. Brands will need to ensure that they have a deep understanding of their target audiences, creating a single customer view, to be able to effectively plan, deploy and measure the success of their campaigns
Sponsored Stories launched in 2011 have thus far been somewhat limited in their scope. However, with the launch of custom verbs at this year’s F8, their potential has been opened up. It’s no longer just about ‘liking’, brands will soon be able to run Sponsored Stories which mention ‘reading’, ‘listening’ or any other verb that fits with the brand in question. This will make ads more social and relevant, push up response rates and help Facebook provide even more value for brands.
Despite the continual rumour that email is a dying form of communication, the evidence tells another story. The strength of using email as a marketing tool is set to continue growing. The increasing growth in sales and popularity of smartphones gives customers another device through which they can view their emails at any time of day or night, making email an even more accessible form of communication. As our inboxes reach capacity, and with many of us having more than one email account and consuming emails on a number of different devices, ESPs will have to cut through the noise in order to stay competitive.