Digital marketing trends are changing just as fast as the rate at which technology is innovating. Those who refuse to adjust with the changing times will inevitably be at a competitive disadvantage. Let’s take a look some of the top digital marketing trends that will emerge in the second half of the year and the beginning of 2019.

Chatbots and Artificial Intelligence Tools

Chatbots and other artificial intelligence tools are quickly becoming ubiquitous. The majority of such bots have good intentions yet plenty of organizations have not yet invested in this form of artificial intelligence as it lacks the human element. As long as your chatbot does not annoy target prospects, it will pay major dividends. Spend some time figuring out the many different scenarios the chatbot will have to address, the responses and paths customers are likely to take and instances in which users should be redirected to an actual human. Though creating the perfect chat bot will certainly take some time, the returns will be well worth it. Chatbots are likely to save upward of $8 billion each year by 2022. This figure represents a 400 percent leap from last year.

Voice Search as a Component of SEO

Nowadays, it seems like everyone has Google Home or Alexa in the house or office. Voice AI was criticized by many as a fad upon its initial debut yet it is becoming increasingly clear these digital assistants are here to stay. Upwards of 70 million such voice devices will be in offices and homes across the country by next year. Everyone who works in marketing or owns/manages a business should use voice search as a key component of their search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. Relying on natural language instead of solely focusing on keywords will prove especially helpful for voice search. Invest in this emerging technology and your website really will receive that much more traffic. After all, some industry experts anticipate voice search will account for one-half of all online searches in the next two years.

Snack Ads

Snack ads are short videos about 10 seconds in length or less. One need not look any further than YouTube to understand the rapid rise of snack ads. The online video provider is sprinkling in these short ads between videos more and more with each passing day. Such short videos are effective as the average person’s attention span is rapidly shrinking. If your business cannot create video content that keeps customers’ attention, they will move on to something else. Keep your video ads to 10 seconds or less and prospective customers will remain interested. Alternatively, those who run ads that last a full minute or longer will quickly lose a considerable portion of their audience. This is precisely why short ads will be used by brands of all types in the coming months and years. Prospect engagement has been and always will be the name of the game.

Native Ads Will Become That Much More Popular

The days of relying on banner ads are slowly fading away. People are beginning to tune out banner ads as they are over, annoying and used overly-frequently. Native ads are the solution. These social media ads are formatted similar to regular posts and shown in users’ streams. Examples include promoted posts on Instagram and sponsored updates on LinkedIn. Users are more likely to engage with native ads as they are less obtrusive, more covert and tell a relatable story.

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