There are a number of factors, including social, demographic and consumption trends you need to take into account when designing your digital strategy. They include:
Mobile devices are the most popular way of surfing the web, with 51,4% of users getting online this way. It is expected that around 70% of online searches will be made on mobile devices in 2018, so if a business is not mobile-friendly, with a responsive website or an app, they will only be able to engage with 3 in 10 online consumers.
A large proportion of the content consumed on mobile devices will be videos. Already in 2017, this format accounted for 90% of shared content on social networks and generated three times more views on Facebook than standard posts. Forecasts for 2020 show that 80% of all online content will be in video format.
To stand out from the crowd and to grab the viewer’s attention in the crucial first three seconds, you need videos that can be understood with or without sound. And they have to be useful to the audience, offering tutorials or tips on how to better use a product or a service, and thereby integrating the video into the costumer journey.
Audio-visual content formats expected to experience the largest rate of growth over the next few years include live videos. Q&A sessions, employee presentations, and streaming of events, awards and parties. Live streaming can give companies the chance to invite their customers and clients ‘behind the scenes’, dispelling the image of an anonymous corporation. This trend will also influence the style of commercial videos. These will be filmed in a way that will make them more spontaneous, to be consumed in the moment.
Generation Z, the next consumers
We will have to stop thinking about millennials as the key demographic to target and instead start thinking about Generation Z, that is consumers born between 1994 and 2015. After all, they represent 25,9% of the world population. Less passive, more consumerist and egocentric than their predecessors, they produce and share content through YouTube, Playbuzz, Vine or Tumblr. What do they want from a brand? To be part of the design process and have their products personalized.
Before using a product or contacting a company, consumers are increasingly using the internet to make an informed choice. They will look for other users’ opinions and reviews posted social networks. Trust is increasingly important, especially for local businesses. Companies that advocate for transparency, offering information about how they source or make their products, or personal information about the people behind the brand, will be rewarded by the market.
The digital world is hyperlocal
The digital landscape makes it easier than ever for local companies to interact with their customers. Online search results and social networks are more and more based on geolocalization. This allows local companies to compete even with the most important brands to get the attention of the consumer. First, however, they need to be aware of all the opportunities offered by Google, Facebook, etc. in order to take advantage of them.
Photo by Marjan Grabowski