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How Digital Marketing Will Change in 2016

Digital Marketing in 2016

Digital marketing is a constantly-evolving industry. This past year has already seen massive shifts, and the next 12 months show no signs of slowing down. Between new Google algorithms, innovative techniques and emerging tools, we know 2016 will look much different than 2015.

At EverSpark Interactive, we’re eager to see how the industry will evolve and shift in 2016. Here are just some of the changes we foresee, and what we are really excited about.

Jessica Scott, Senior Web Designer

Changes in 2016

Jessica ScottFrom a design/UX perspective, I see two major changes coming to digital marketing next year. First, mobile traffic and conversions will continue to grow. We’re now at the point where mobile usage exceeds desktop usage, so we need to make sure all of our content is optimized for mobile. It’s interesting to note that we’re actually seeing users change devices throughout the day — users use the desktop during work hours, smartphone on the go and tablet while at home. So while mobile grows, we probably won’t see the death of desktop anytime soon.

The second thing I see is that user experience is becoming Experience Marketing. This involves our clients’ entire customer experience, from educating themselves on their website, to calling or chatting, to the in-person customer service. If a potential client or customer has a bad experience in anyone of these points, it could mean losing them forever. We need to do our part to make sure our clients’ digital experience is a pleasant one and advise in areas that they may need to adjust.

What I’m Excited About

I’m most excited that Google is finally taking user experience into consideration for their algorithm. For the longest time, SEO and Design didn’t get along because it used to be easy to rank: keyword stuffing, headlines oriented to machines and not people, etc. And while this would drive traffic, your bounce rates suffered because your page was designed (or had no design) for people since it catered toward machines. Now I see SEO and design slowly merging around content that is shaped for people.

Matt McLean, Director of Client Services and Digital Strategies

Changes in 2016

Matt McLeanContent marketing will remain a large focus for digital marketers in 2016. The strategies of producing high-quality, relevant content will continue, but what will change in 2016 are the tools, platforms and distribution channels to promote the content. I’ve been using a tool called Mention lately, but other tools such as Medium are becoming more and more popular. And with popularity comes competition of bigger, better and cheaper marketing tools.  There’s an abundance of published high-quality content, but it can get lost in the mix with the amount of low-quality, shallow content out there. The marketing challenge is getting the right content in front of the right audience so they can avoid that distracting and frustrating content. With all the clutter, using the right tools can help marketers break through the clutter, but also help users find the most relevant content.  

Mobile is another area that has been a big focus for marketers for years and has produced many buzzwords in the industry, but the way we look at mobile will change in 2016. With mobile searches having finally surpassed desktop searches, addressing the mobile-first concept is key to ensuring that content is mobile friendly. Although responsive sites have helped, specifically designing content for mobile will improve click-through rates and conversions.  

What I’m Excited About

I’m most excited to see what marketing tech companies develop in our ever-evolving, ever-changing industry.

Clinton Dugan, Director of Digital Strategies & SEO

Changes in 2016

Clinton DugganThe biggest change I see coming is that all forms of digital marketing will need to finally play nice. One won’t be able to outshine the other. I think we will continue to see a surge of PR in the online space and will need to rely more and more on content than in the past.  I think SEO as whole is ugly; at the end of 2016, the conversation around a SEO-only plan will be dead. Rather, it will become a full digital marketing plan, as it should have years ago.


What I’m Excited About

The term “SEO” is finally moving out of its silo. It has been isolated for far too long; SEO is not hard. It’s not a game anymore, we know what works. Just need to execute it right, in combination with other aspects of digital marketing, for long-term success for our clients.

Chris Watson, CEO

Changes in 2016

Chris WatsonI agree with Matt’s suggestions that 2016 will be the year of tools: content and mobile. To piggyback off that a little bit, I think it will be the year where incompetence has nowhere to hide. As reporting and analytics are giving clients more access than ever before, I believe that clients will have a full picture on every aspect of their campaigns. The ones that don’t have either hired the wrong agency or not taken nearly enough time to familiarize themselves with the digital marketing landscape.

I also think that video will continue to expand. I was recently at a trade show where a Google exec showed us YouTube advertising technology that only charges you if someone actually watches your video, so there will be a move towards far more meaningful CPM on video advertising.

Finally, I think this will be the year that the excessive use of the term “360” in Digital Marketing will finally start to slow down. It’s very very hard to be a full 360 agency; it requires far more resources and knowledge than simply knowing the basics and outsourcing the rest. Similar to the misuse of the term “SEO” just because you know how to write code and affect on-page results, thin agencies calling themselves 360 will start to feel the pinch of client expectations, particularly when you consider the access to tools and campaign measurement.

What I’m Excited About

We spent the better part of 2015 building new processes that are finally fully operational. I’m looking forward to putting our processes in place across the board and getting amazing results for our clients. That’s the business we’re in.

Be Ready for the New Year

There’s no doubt that 2016 will see all sorts of major changes to digital marketing strategies. At EverSpark Interactive, we are dedicated to seeing these changes and adapting our techniques to reflect them. In this way, we ensure our clients are ahead of the curve to increase their website traffic and grow their business as a whole.

If you haven’t seen results from your current digital marketing agency, now is the time to change. Check out what EverSpark Interactive can do for you, and give us a call today.