From TikTok to chatbots, remarketing to video marketing; it’s not always easy keeping up to date with the latest digital marketing trends, especially when you’re focused on running your business. It can be even harder to separate the fads from the things that will make a lasting impact and know where to invest your time and money.
But in the online world, you don’t want to be left behind! Whether you sell a product or a service, your content marketing can quickly feel out of date if you don’t embrace change. This can in turn affect your customer experience and your sales.
Here are some simple tips to help you stay on top of the latest changes in the world of marketing – so you can stay ahead of the competition.
1. Read blog posts and newsletters
You’re reading this, so chances are you’re already aware of this tip!
Reading blogs written by industry experts is one of the best ways to keep your knowledge up to date. There are so many great sources of information online written by experts that are available for you to learn from for free.
When you find a blog that you like, make sure you bookmark it or subscribe to the newsletter if there is one!
You don’t need to read every post or get too bogged down in the detail. Simply reading the headlines will give you a quick overview of the latest trends.
Some great sources for learning about all aspects of digital are Econsultancy and State of Digital. Whereas if you want to learn about something specific like SEO, you can read about everything from featured snippets to search queries on Search Engine Journal. There’s loads more great publications out there for all levels of expertise.
And in case you didn’t know, we have our own blog full of the latest digital marketing trends. It’s full of helpful tips for busy business owners!
2. Use free industry tools
Google Alerts is a free tool that’s really simple to use. Just enter a word or phrase that you want to keep up to date with, and you’ll receive email alerts whenever Google finds new content.
You could set-up a general alert for ‘digital marketing news’ or be more specific and have alerts for things like ‘email marketing’ or ‘Facebook advertising’.
Once you’ve picked your search terms, you can decide how often to receive alerts; as it happens, once a day or once a week. You can choose what sort of media you want to receive alerts from too, such as blogs, news, or books.
Google Trends is another free tool that shows how the popularity of different search terms has changed through time.
You’ll never miss out on something new!
3. Embrace social media
Following industry thought-leaders, marketing agencies and business publications on social media is a quick, simple and effective way to learn about new trends.
All you have to do is search for a certain phrase or hashtag in the search box of LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook and you’ll find loads of posts. Follow a few accounts that post regularly, and you’ll always be up to date.
If you want to be targeted about how you use social media, you could even set-up lists on Twitter with all the accounts that you find most useful. That way you can be sure not to miss anything!
4. Attend industry events
In-person events aren’t happening right now, but there are still plenty of online webinars and conferences happening that you can sign-up to.
Look out for events advertised on LinkedIn, Eventbrite or through your local business networks. Whether online or in-person, events offer a great way to network and pick-up invaluable advice that can help you fine-tune your marketing strategies.
5. Look at your competition
If you see others in your industry doing something frequently, like using live video to speak directly to their audiences on social media, pay attention! It may be that they’re getting good results and it could work for you too.
And don’t ignore the big global brands. If they’ve invested in something it may just be because it’s going to be huge!
In the fast-paced world of digital marketing, being one of the first to embrace a new trend can give you an edge over the competition.
While you definitely don’t have to embrace every trend that pops up, you DO need to be aware of the big changes that affect things like where your website is placed in Google’s search results (check out one of our recent blog posts if you’d like to learn more about it!).
We do our best to share our knowledge in a digestible way here on our blog, but if it’s all too much and you need an expert opinion on how you can adopt trends that will make an impact on your business, get in touch!