3 Digital Marketing Trends that Have Changed My Perception of the Industry

Online Marketing
By Abbey Willman, our Fall 2016 Scholarship winner

“Hi, I have noticed you looked up eyeglasses once on Amazon; allow me to display a strip of ads for glasses on every site you visit.” This is the story of every online user ever since technology has revolutionized our society into being an indoctrinated consuming addict. The introduction of cookies produced in a computer is just one of the many influences of modern day marketing. While the strategy behind marketing has continued for centuries, to advertise to as many people and as effectively as possible, the trends marketers utilize can change from year to year. Trends in online advertising such as mobile marketing, electronic payments, and video advertisements have evolved through recent years. With the discovery of all these numerous marketing trends, I have come to the conclusion that our world is one big, never-satisfied consumer.

Growing up, advertisements were limited to an average 30-second advertisement through television or radio and paper advertisements in magazines, newspapers, or billboards. With the rise of mobile technology, a new outlet for marketers to reach out to audiences grew. The attention to search history and use of it to appeal to the masses was one of marketing’s newest priorities. To be successful with any internet advertising strategy, being aware of where your target audience’s attention is will ultimately determine the success of those efforts or not. As the iPhone and other smartphones emerged, our addiction to them grew progressively fast. They are attached to us at all times and we rely on them for just about everything we do. Whether we want to accept it or not, we are consumed by technology. We use it to research our interests and help us structure and organize our schedules. The search history developed on our devices has fashioned an effortless map for marketers to catch your attention and eventually your business for whatever it is they are advertising. Past marketing techniques were very limited due to the lack of emphasis on virtual publication of ideas and interests of an individual. At one point I felt this was a form of violation of privacy, but that cannot be so if we are publicly publishing such ideas and interests. While the pop-up ads may be irritating at times, I have found that I no longer see the industry as taking advantage of us. They are modestly trying to limit their efforts to displaying only offerings that are alluring to us.

One marketing tactic used regularly is the appeal to safety qualities. It is what sells higher priced baby supplies, security systems, and food services. Humans need that sense of peace, privacy, and safety. Credit card fraud is on the rise of being one of the most committed crimes; therefore, the demand for a safer way of completing transactions arises. In this recent trend, consumers are offered a new payment method and will change the way consumers buy online purchases. This has made me perceive the marketing community as more than just those who are looking for any way to sell something. I must agree with Neil Patel, who wrote in a recent Forbes article that they are aware of privacy issues and care enough to try implementing this new idea of purchasing electronically. More importantly, this marketing trend does not stop there. They also demonstrate the priority of safety and privacy through teaching and reassuring customers of the new transition.

Advertising to the right person can be quite difficult if the format for the ad is not considered. The fact that newspapers have been on the decline for years is proof that as entertainment platforms change, so must marketing strategies. Online video advertisements could easily overtake the entire advertising industry. More and more people are utilizing their DVRs to skip through commercials on television and streaming more on Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube. The future of internet advertising is here. Marketers who recognize this early on have the advantage to reach audiences in places they never expected. I used to think a marketer’s job is done once an ad is created and delivered to the appropriate audience, but it is not. They must always be aware that what may have worked in the past can easily become ineffective in a matter of months. As Jayson DeMurs explains in a recent Forbes article, “It’s a sign that users are becoming more accepting of video ads online, and as that trend continues, expect to see more types of video ads popping up in more unexpected places. With Google’s ownership of YouTube, the possibilities are virtually limitless.”

The effectiveness of internet advertising should never be doubted. It has proven how it can shape our reactions, appeal to our senses, and control our attention. Trends may come and go, but one thing is for sure: the concept of marketing will never alter.