Two heavyweights leading the charge in 2024 are AI and machine learning. This dynamic duo aren't just buzzwords anymore. They're powering personalised experiences, predictive analytics that anticipates consumer behaviour, and those friendly chatbots that seem to know exactly what you need.
Tools and support for content creation are stepping up their game too. From intuitive platforms that streamline our workflow to AI-powered assistants lending a hand in crafting engaging content, it's an exciting time to be in the digital marketing arena.
However, we do type this with a word of caution. While embracing these technological advances, let's not forget the irreplaceable human touch! It's essential to ensure that our understanding of the audience remains at the core of our strategies. After all, navigating the evolving landscape of digital marketing requires a delicate balance between cutting-edge technology and genuine human connection.
Get ready to hit play because, in 2024, video content isn't just the king—it's reigning supreme. We're talking live streams that make you feel like you're right there in the action, snappy short-form videos that capture attention in the blink of an eye, and experiences that pull you into a whole new world of interactivity and immersion.
Video advertising isn't just a trend, it's becoming the cornerstone of digital marketing strategies in 2024. Consumers are scrolling through their feeds, and what stops them in their tracks? Compelling, captivating video ads that tell a story in seconds. With attention spans getting shorter than ever, video ads are the secret sauce for grabbing eyes and holding them. But here's the exciting part—it's not just about the typical ad anymore. Brands are diving into innovative formats, from shoppable videos that let you click and shop while watching, to interactive ads that let you be a part of the action. In 2024, video advertising isn't just about selling a product; it's about creating an experience that sticks in the viewer's mind long after the ad ends.
Here is what our Head of SEO, Andy Mollison has to say about video:
“With 40% of Gen Z searching on TikTok instead of using traditional search engines such as Google, the need for brands to shift their attention to video is paramount, especially for those marketing to younger audiences. Marketing tactics such as your SEO strategies need to adapt depending on your target audience, and this is one of those moments where doing nothing could be the difference between success and failure.”
And Gary Gumbleton, our Creative Director:
“The key reasons that video is now at the forefront of digital advertising is trust, transparency and translation. The best way to build trust is human to human. It’s difficult for a business to build a human-to-human connection when you focus exclusively on OOH or legacy marketing like print for example. The age old cliche that people buy from people is still true to this day and if you can show people in your video, trust comes with it. You can see body language, background, context and meaning in a short 30-second video if it’s done right. Transparency and that emotive connection is what the modern-day viewer (and fundamentally a consumer) wants to see. They want to invest emotionally with all aspects of the business before they invest financially. What better way to connect with emotion than to be transparent.”
Let's talk about the voice that's changing the digital landscape…. literally! With the surge in the use of voice-activated devices, from our smart speakers to the voice assistants in our smartphones, optimising voice search is the name of the game in 2024 with predictions being that there will be 8.4 billion used worldwide!
Let’s set the scene.. someone is cooking dinner and asks their smart speaker for the best pubs nearby or requests a tutorial for fixing a broken dishwasher. In these moments, your business needs to be the voice that answers their needs.
The way people search through voice commands is different; it's conversational, it's immediate, and it's all about being the top answer. So, in the world of digital marketing, being the solution to those voice-activated queries means tailoring your content and SEO strategies to match these natural, spoken phrases. Voice assistants often rely on featured snippets and position zero results to provide answers. Optimising content for these snippets can significantly increase the chances of being the chosen voice response. In 2024, it's not just about being found; it's about being heard loud and clear in the realm of voice-activated searches. It is imperative to understand our audience and their behaviour. It's more than just being present on the right channel at the opportune moment, it's about delivering content in the right format to meet their specific needs.
In the age of heightened awareness, where the weight of climate change and pressing social issues dominates our collective consciousness, consumers are not merely making purchasing decisions; they are choosing affiliations with brands that align with their values. Beyond the allure of a product, it's the underlying ethos of a brand that now commands attention.
In 2024, consumers are set to yearn for more than just goods—they will crave authenticity and demand a profound level of transparency. A brand's commitment to sustainability, ethical sourcing, and social responsibility will be under the spotlight. Here, the call to be an eco-warrior with recyclable packaging and to treat suppliers like rock stars with fair trade practices isn't a mere add-on; it transforms into an essential requirement. Those brands that artfully weave these values into their narratives don't just create a 'feel-good' vibe; they tap into the psyche of today's socially conscious consumers, nurturing connections that extend far beyond the checkout button. In this ever-evolving marketing landscape, it's more than just adopting a trend—it's a profound and necessary shift in perspective that tugs at the heart of consumer psychology.
The spotlight is now shining on the significance of first-party data, especially with the tightening of privacy regulations in the EU and UK. As we gear up for a cookieless world in 2024, navigating these unknown waters requires a strategic shift towards leveraging first-party data to its full potential. Unlike relying on third-party cookies, collecting data directly from consumers ensures reliability and accuracy. Marketers can trust that this information is not only up-to-date but also a true reflection of their audience's behaviour. This shift not only maintains compliance with evolving privacy regulations but also unlocks the door to personalised marketing strategies. Building direct relationships with customers, fostering trust, and encouraging voluntary data sharing emerge as the new power moves.
In this era, personalisation remains the game-changer, but now is the time for creativity and innovation, crafting content that engages and resonates without heavy reliance on traditional tracking mechanisms. The journey to a cookieless future is all about adaptability, innovation, and the art of connecting with your audience on a deeply personal level.
Here is what Sylvain Lourgouilloux, our Client Growth Director, had to say:
“As we stand at the cliff of a cookieless world in 2024, our role at LAB becomes even more pivotal. Navigating the uncharted territories of first-party data requires not just a shift in strategy but a commitment to innovation. LAB is positioned to create a significant impact by not only ensuring compliance with privacy regulations but also by unleashing the full potential of first-party data. In this era of change, it’s not just about personalisation; it’s about creativity, innovation, and establishing genuine connections with the audience.”
As we conclude this expedition through the uncharted territories of digital marketing in 2024, it feels like we've just wrapped up an epic movie with AI and machine learning as our dynamic protagonists, video content reigning supreme in a blockbuster role, and the transformative voice that literally changed the script. In the age of heightened awareness and sustainability, brands have become the heroes, embracing authenticity and creating a 'feel-good' vibe that resonates with socially conscious consumers. In this thrilling climax, we find ourselves standing on the precipice of a cookieless future, an uncharted territory where marketers navigate with the nimbleness and innovation of characters facing the unknown. And here at Reflect Digital, the common thread weaving through all these trends is human behaviour. It's the driving force behind every move we make.
So, grab your popcorn because the show must go on! The trends of 2024 have set the stage for the sequel, and we can't wait to watch it unfold! After all, it's the understanding of human behaviour that keeps us at the forefront, ready to adapt and innovate in this ever-evolving digital landscape.Contact Us
Far from your workaday Account Manager, Hannah strives to be your organisation’s representative within Reflect Digital. She brings a strategic mindset to all of her work, and works consultatively with her clients to ensure that, together, they can find the way to take their digital marketing to the next level, and smash their targets. She also ensures all of the Reflect’s teams are aligned, prepared and organised to give her clients the best experience.More about Hannah