Ten major online marketing trends for 2010
Marketers have highlighted turning data into actions as one of their top issues, and see IT as their main bottleneck, despite emerging channels such as mobile, rich media and social media being adopted with enthusiasm, according to a survey by Unica.
Nearly half of the marketers surveyed said they have already embraced social media marketing, and adoption is healthy across most social media outlets (such as blogs, Facebook, and Twitter). However, marketers still need to think more about integrating social media with other marketing tactics.
The survey suggested that online marketing is facing unprecedented change, largely brought on by a volatile economy, the meteoric rise of new channels, and an increased demand for financial accountability.
In summary, the ten main online marketing trends identified were:
- Marketing budgets and focus continue to swing online Marketing dollars are going where the customers and prospects are - online. Online channels are lower cost and more measurable, and as a result continue to cannibalise traditional media. Some 84% of marketers said it is important for their organisation to shift their marketing focus to more online.
- Marketers will work harder to keep email relevant Almost all marketers (92%) are using or planning to use email marketing during the coming year, making it the most widely adopted marketing tactic. With email adoption being pervasive and consumers' inboxes being increasingly crowded, marketers will move beyond their old "spray and pray" strategies and work hard to stay more relevant.
- Search continues as an online marketing mainstay There are no signs that consumers will stop using search engines as their primary vehicle to find products and services. However, search marketers are starting to take notice of search engines other than Google.
- Marketers expand targeting and personalisation of web sites Expect more personalisation of web sites, as 55% of marketers are already using targeting and personalisation on their sites, and another 21% will roll it out during the coming year.
- Proliferation of other online channels persist Marketers are faced with a dizzying array of new channels - mobile (messaging, websites, apps), rich media (video, podcasting, gaming), social media (microblogging, social networks, user generated content), and more.
- Mobile continues becoming more significant Interest in mobile marketing has exploded, driven by the tremendous success of Apple's iPhone and Google's introduction of the Android operating system. As smartphone adoption grows, mobile marketing is likely to expand beyond mobile messaging and make mobile email, mobile web sites and mobile applications more viable channels in which to conduct marketing.
- Marketers continue to nurture social media Social media web sites such as Facebook and Twitter have had a meteoric rise and, as companies pinpoint the specific social tactics that work best to engage their customers, marketers will expand their social media participation.
- Web analytics unify online data across channels Web analytics will increasingly focus on integrating customer data from the web, search, mobile, and social measurement.
- IT bottlenecks drive adoption of on-demand marketing solutions Some 67% of marketers complained about IT's support for marketing technology needs. Marketers identified this as the number one technology bottleneck.
- Online marketing suites bridge the gap between analysis and action The multitude of online channels is leaving marketers adrift in a sea of data, and web analytics tools will increasingly help them measure performance across all channels, although converting this insight into action will remain challenging.