Johnson Nguyen Looks at 6 Digital Marketing Trends That Will Dominate 2020 and Beyond

Johnson Nguyen Looks at 6 Digital Marketing Trends That Will Dominate 2020 and Beyond

As we edge closer to 2020, businesses of all sizes — from small, dynamic startups to large, established enterprises — are turning their sights towards the digital marketing trends that will dominate the year ahead, and set both the path and pace for years to come.

According to entrepreneur and online marketing strategist Johnson Nguyen, here are six digital marketing trends that will dominate 2020 and beyond:

1. Omnichannel Marketing

Omnichannel marketing involves a mix of customized strategies, tactics, tools and technologies that engage customers and prospects across various channels, in order to deliver a seamless, consistent and impressive brand experience at every touchpoint.

Johnson Nguyen, who heads a Vancouver, British Columbia-based online marketing firm, claims that in the past, most businesses only needed to focus on their website and two or three major social media properties such as Facebook, Twitter or YouTube. However, these days there are several, and for some businesses dozens of accounts and platforms that connect to target audiences — and each one must be monitored and optimized. Failing to do so creates a gap that can send prospects and customers straight to the competition.

2. Chatbots

Chatbots have come a long, long way in recent years. When they first arrived on the scene, they were limited and often frustrated rather than impressed customers. However, things have dramatically changed for the better, and now an increasing number of people — especially millennials — don’t merely tolerate chatbots, but they seek them out for quick, accurate answers on everything from shipping costs to product suggestions. What’s more, doctors, dentists and other professional service providers are increasingly using chatbots to engage patients and clients, and provide them with information about appointments, clinic hours, cancellation policies, and so on.

In addition to providing accurate real-time information, businesses that intelligently rather than haphazardly leverage chatbots are saving an astonishing amount of money. In fact, researchers predict that by 2022, chatbots will help banking and healthcare firms in particular cut labor and administrative costs by over $8 billion per year.

3. Personalization

On the digital marketing landscape, personalization does not merely mean inserting a customer’s name in an email field code. Rather, it means mining a variety of data sources — especially purchase, browsing and interaction history — to proactively provide customers with timely, relevant and meaningful information that makes them feel valued and important.

Johnson Nguyen claims that for decades, the knock against online engagement has been that it is generic, impersonal, and basically a one-size-fits-all approach. However, the proliferation of data and the ability to capture, organize and cultivate it into actionable intelligence, is creating a whole new world of digital personalization. In the years ahead, customers and prospects will experience across-the-board personalization on everything from video messages to web content to targeted and triggered content recommendation, and the list goes on. This will lead to more engagement, more loyalty, and more sales.

4. Local Search

For several years, the only thing that most businesses wanted from search engines was to be on page one — and ideally, somewhere in the first few search results. While this is still a worthy — and for some businesses, necessary — objective, in 2020 and the years ahead more businesses will shift their strategy and resources towards climbing the local ranking; and with good reason. Research by Google has found that 50 percent of customers who perform a local search on their smartphone visited a business or store within 24 hours.

Johnson Nguyen comments that there are many integrated strategies for improving local search profile, such as ensuring that all citation information is accurate and complete. And this isn’t just a priority for e-commerce companies. Firms in the B2B and B2G space also need to optimize their local search profile, since failing to show up alongside key competitors in a geographic region can lead to being left off the shortlist.

5. Video Marketing

An old song from the 1980s claimed that “video killed the radio star.” Well, video marketing is not going to kill digital tactics like pay-per-click advertising or content marketing (more on this below in the discussion on inbound marketing), but it is certainly going to flex its muscles and significantly determine the impact and ROI of online marketing campaigns.

YouTube ranks only behind Google when it comes to global daily traffic, and research by Cisco predicts that by 2020 video will make up more than 85 percent of all consumer traffic in the U.S. This means businesses that have already jumped on the video marketing bus and are leveraging it to increase mindshare, marketshare and brand loyalty are well ahead of the pack. Conversely, businesses that have little or no video marketing need to catch up — or else they will find themselves struggling to keep up and get noticed.

6. Inbound Marketing

To start with, inbound marketing certainly isn’t new. In fact, it’s been around (in one form or another) for about a decade, and refers to using content — such as articles, videos, blog posts, white papers, infographics, and so on — to generate leads; including those who may not be on the buyer’s journey at the moment, but may get there in the weeks, months, or even years down the road. What will change in 2020 and beyond, however, is that inbound marketing will increase its importance and dominance in the market strategy mix.

According to Johnson Nguyen, the most coveted position for businesses these days — regardless of what they sell or how they sell it — is not to be a vendor or supplier, but to be a trustworthy partner and thought leader. The fastest and most cost-effective way to check those boxes is through content. Research has found that inbound marketing costs 62 percent less than outbound marketing but generates three times as many leads.

The Bottom Line

Nobody — not even an online marketing guru like Johnson Nguyen — has a crystal ball that definitively details what the future holds in the digital marketing world. However, it is not just a safe bet, but a foregone conclusion, that the story of 2020 and beyond will trace it roots to all of the above trends; in ways that we can imagine and, indeed, in ways that we cannot.

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