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Six Digital Marketing Trends for 2019

Shannon Powers headshot

We don’t mean to rush you, but 2019 is around the corner, and we’re sort of Type A when it comes to digital strategy (or let’s be real, everything we do). So we thought we’d help you get a jump start on your 2019 marketing plan with an overview of the trends that will be shaping the field in the year ahead.

1. Video, Video, Video

You may have already noticed, but video is dominating the web, and there’s no sign of that ending anytime soon. Good thing it’s never been easier to produce high-quality video affordably. As the marketing adage goes, “people buy from people,” so video is a great way to showcase the people behind your organization or brand and let them bring your products or services to life.

2. Go Live

Apropos video, social media is now giving us ample opportunity to connect with audiences in real time. Whether it be on Facebook or Instagram Stories, broadcasting live is an opportunity to interact with your viewers in real time, as they like or comment on what you’re saying or even ask questions that you can answer immediately. If this seems intimidating, rest assured, people expect a less polished, more authentic version of you when you’re live, “ums” and all. So prepare, but don’t let perfectionism stand in your way of going live.

3. Play with Your Instagram Stories

People love flipping through Instagram Stories, probably because of just how dynamic they are. And research shows that businesses and organizations using Stories have a much higher reach than those who just post to their gallery feed. Earlier this year, Instagram added tons of new features to make Stories even more playful, plus IG pros have come up with tons of creative hacks for getting their message across. We’ll save the details for another post (#foreshadowing), but if you’re not telling your story on Stories yet, you’re missing out.

4. The Robots are Coming

You can’t be everywhere all the time, but your bots can be. Artificial intelligence is the wave of the future for marketing, but it’s also the here and now. Chatbots can message your Facebook page viewers with special offers and announcements, direct people to your best content, or even answer frequently asked questions. And you can harness the power of AI to up your email marketing game, letting it determine everything from what to send to whom and when.

5. 1:1 is the Ratio You Need to Know

Now that we have more data that ever before, what will we do with it? Use it to personalize our marketing of course. Go beyond adding a reader’s first name to your email and take advantage of all that to customize your each person’s interaction with your organization. Send a reminder to people who have read about your event but didn’t register, send messages of appreciation and special content to your best customers/biggest donors, and invite people who haven’t visited your website in a while to check out what’s new. There are infinite ways to take advantage of this wealth of information but one thing is certain — you’ll have a much better chance of converting a casual onlooker into your new number one fan if you’re sending the right message to the right target at the right time.

6. Lock Them In

We know, recurring donations are not new. But this is our big moment to fully underscore the importance of making sustaining donations a central part of your online fundraising plan (if they aren’t already). And this trend is certainly not going anywhere in 2019. In fact, a recent report from Classy revealed that “recurring donors are a whopping 440 percent more valuable than one-time donors.” Take THAT!

Setting up donors for monthly recurring donations is a win-win strategy — they don’t have to think about it (or feel it too much) and your organization typically ends up with a larger cumulative donation than they otherwise would have received. Make sure your site is set up to handle monthly recurring donors and start highlighting this feature in your social content and your emails — you can even create a special monthly giving page and outline the benefits of becoming one (lunch with your ED and a private behind the scenes tour of your office complete with branded tote bag anyone?!).

What’s on your marketing agenda for 2019? Drop us a line and let us know. Maybe we can help.

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