It’s been a rough year, there’s no denying it. It’s been a great year in respects to the progression of online marketing though. With 2017 only two days away, naturally, it is time to start thinking about all of the potential that the year ahead holds. As franchise marketers, we should be especially aware of how we can be at the top of the industry by using all tools available because the competition is even harder for a franchise. By reviewing all the lessons we’ve learned in 2016 and developments that just aren’t quite there we can get a pretty good look at what this, and the years ahead, will bestow.
Live Video Streaming Everything
This year, the first presidential debate was live streamed. Facebook Live and YouTube each have their own 360-degree video streaming and, as of less than 24-hours ago, so does Twitter. The demand for live everything will continue to stream into most aspects of our lives, phone cameras and video applications will only continue to get better — this isn’t a passing fad.
Online marketing has the advantage of being able to use video streaming to its full potential by creating immersive content. We’ve seen it already with apps like Snapchat, businesses can create their own accounts to post content that will engage people in a way that static advertising cannot. It is a great benefit for franchises because it allows each location to post their own unique, up-to-date information and, if used properly, they will be able to stand out from other brands or locations. More franchise brands will be creating and utilizing live streaming for advertising as well as webinars and other informational meetings.
Native Advertising (aka Sneak-attack ads)
It’s annoying, but it works. As people skim through every Facebook, tumblr, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. feed on their phones and tablets, it’s easy for them to quickly swipe past a bright friendly banner ad because they know what it’s trying to sell something. However, they will stop and click on an intriguing looking post. Only after they’ve read and absorbed it do they learn it was an ad the whole time. It’s a bit insidious but, hey, that’s the world we are living in.
On the same note, the need for denser content is now of the highest importance because when people are scrolling their eyes will take in a catchy title and maybe a few lines of the underlying content, but in all likelihood they won’t read it. An infinite scroll of information means you need to make every word count with native advertising.
Big Data, Baby!
As marketers, we can’t get enough of data. Whether you see it as a necessary evil or absolutely love it (there’s so much of it!) you can’t ignore it. Big data is one of the most important aspects of the industry because without it, everything would be guess work. If that’s the case, we should all kick back and do ads Mad Men-style. As technology progresses, big data will become more and more useful as businesses grow and new practices are put into place.
As the data flows in, personalization of everything will increase. Franchises will be able to customize each experience by consumer, which holds the potential to increase business over the competition because people really like being given recommendations. Services that currently provide this like Amazon, Netflix, Spotify, etc will learn even more about you and other services will begin to have the ability to customize your experience. So maybe now Netflix will stop making suggestions based on the movie your butt chose that time you sat on the remote.
The great thing about online marketing is that inspiration can be taken from the smallest, or the biggest, corners of the internet, the opportunities are bountiful.