5 Marketing Trends for 2013: What’s Hot and Why You Should Care

Not to give away my age, but let's just say a lot has changed in marketing since I started my career. I have witnessed the evolution of the digital age, along with the social media boom which has profoundly changed the way that the world conducts business, blurring the line between business and social. While the current marketing arena is vast and dynamic, there are a few trends that I believe will have a significant impact on the success of businesses in 2013. The following are my list of top five:

1. Mobile Marketing

With the proliferation of e-readers, tablets, and smart phones, buyers are no longer relying on their desktop or laptop to learn about your business or make purchases. IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark recently reported that 24% of all 2012 Black Friday online purchases were made from a mobile device – up from 6% just two years ago. And a 2012 Nielsen study concluded that more than half of all US adults currently own a smart phone or tablet – a number sure to increase in 2013.

As consumers increasingly use their mobile devices for commerce, more and more marketers will be creating mobile-customized websites, content and even display ads. And, as the need arises, developing this media will become much more cost effective.

Finally, in 2013, we will likely see more small-to-medium-size businesses creating mobile apps. If you are considering developing an app for your business, keep in mind that it can be a costly and time-consuming process, so be sure it provides real value to your business and serves a unique function that a mobile website is unable to.

2. Content Marketing

Consumers are more sophisticated than ever, and are looking to brands to provide authentic, useful information before they make purchasing decisions.

By producing quality content--articles, videos, white papers, webinars or other value-added communications--companies are able to position themselves as industry thought leaders and effectively build trust and long-term relationships among their constituents.

In addition, organizations are finding that content marketing is a superior lead generation and SEO strategy. According to the results of a study conducted by B2B Marketing, marketers identified content marketing (51%) as being the most important tool for generating leads, outscoring brand awareness (38%), thought leadership (34%) and sales (29%).
If you don’t have a solid content marketing plan in place for 2013, now’s the time to develop one.

3. Online Reviews

While many businesses shudder at the idea of customers posting public reviews about them on such sites as Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Angie’s List, real-life testimonials (the positive ones, of course) can prove to be the best types of marketing you can ask for. In fact, a recent Nielsen study confirmed that 74% of consumers worldwide say they trust online reviews, while only 47% believe traditional broadcast and print ads. Further, 87% of consumers agree that a favorable review has confirmed their decision to purchase, according to Cone research.

In 2013, you will see more businesses leveraging their positive feedback by incorporating these invaluable testimonials in both their print and online marketing campaigns. (Negative reviews can also be a great opportunity to remedy any product or service issues you may not otherwise be aware of.)

Smart companies know the value of allowing their customers to voice their opinions and will be taking full advantage of these opportunities to build and retain business.

4. Visual Communications

Have you noticed lately the prevalence of photos, videos, and other images in marketing communications and social networking sites, as well as the widespread usage of infographics to communicate data? There’s good reason for it: Companies are beginning to understand the impact that visual communication has on consumers and their purchasing decisions.

A recent blog published by HubSpot astutely observed, “Facebook has turned its walls into timelines and Pinterest, the online photo scrapbooking site, is now the number three social network in the country for total visits, and videos and infographics are peppering blogs everywhere.”

Studies show that an estimated 60% of us are visual learners who process information predominantly with our eyes. Visual content enables consumers to better understand your brand’s identity and give your company a unique personality. More importantly, it drives engagement. In fact, Simply Measured reports that, just one month after Facebook introduced timeline for brands, engagement was up 46% percent per post, and visual content (photos and videos) enjoyed a 65% increase in engagement.

5. Social Sharing

I conclude my list of 2013 marketing trends with social sharing, an integral and valuable subset of social media marketing. Social sharing enables your friends, family, and colleagues to quickly and seamlessly share published content (like this newsletter!) by including buttons that link to various social networking sites, such as Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest. Like online reviews, social sharing is akin to word of mouth advertising – the best type of promotion you can ask for.

Of course, if you like what you’ve read, we encourage you to take part in some social sharing and pass this article along.

Here’s to a successful 2013!


Malouin Marketing
2110 Artesia Blvd., #356
Redondo Beach, CA 90278
(310) 880-7890

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