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The Future of Digital Marketing: Predictions for 2023 and Beyond

Evolving tools, trends and technology make way for capitalizing on new opportunities in the future of digital marketing. Although, keeping up with frequent improvements can be an overwhelming task for site owners.

Get ahead of the game and expect the unexpected by reading up on predictions about the future of digital marketing. Here’s what we expect to see as the biggest content marketing trends for 2023 and beyond.

Key Takeaways

  • 50% of marketers will increase their content marketing budgets in 2023, with 1 in 5 increased by double digits
  • Social Media currently makes up 33% of all digital ad spending and is projected to increase in 2023
  • 45% of small businesses already have a paid search strategy in place and numbers will continue to rise as the need for high-quality content increases
  • 61% of customers prefer to shop are more likely to purchase items with businesses that have augmented reality services

Make the most of improved technology and grow your business with the biggest digital marketing trends for 2023.

2023 Marketing Predictions

There are 3 major trends in the future of digital marketing that everyone will be talking about. The first is the resurgence of Content Marketing as the first thing businesses are doing in marketing. Before the pandemic, startup founders and B2B SaaS marketers would first consider buying social media ads in order to grow their business.

Now, they are doubling down on content marketing. Why? Because Google told us content marketing is the best way to rank for buyer search. Research from the Content Marketing Institute states that 50% of marketers will increase their content marketing budgets in 2023, with 1 in 5 increased by double digits.

 

pie chart showing how B2B content marketing budgets will change in 2023

Image Source: Content Marketing Institute

The second big trend is AI-generated content. We will begin to realize the opportunity of an AI-driven content marketing strategy. If 60-70% of the content we create goes unused, AI will begin to force us to reconsider what we create and why.

Publications like the Washington Post and others have been using AI to generate templated content (think sports scores and highlights, or crime reports) for more than 2 years.

We’ve tested a few of these services and haven’t found any that can produce quality blog content or long form articles to anywhere near the level of quality required to rank for search or answer technical or professional thought leadership requirements. But that future may not be far off.

The third biggest trend is employee activation. AI will tell us what to create, but our best storytellers are our existing employees from across the business. Every company needs a strategy to activate these employees as both creators and as the most effective distribution channel to share that content.

This is what we love to call The Paradox of AI: The more the robots tell us what to do, the more we will need marketing experts to create and share that content.

There are a few things we’re pretty clear about. Content marketing isn’t going to go anywhere for a while for sure. But what other future digital marketing trends might we see as we head towards 2023?

Voice-powered Everything

Smart speakers and “assistants” have been around for a while but they really started to take off in 2017 and 2018 as people have lost the self-consciousness of talking to their phones and a range of new consumer devices like Amazon Alexa and Google Home have appeared on the market.

There’s no reason for the trend in mobile to stop growing, and this hands-free technology will become an increasingly standard way that users choose to interact with their devices. It’s estimated that over half of all search queries are powered by voice search.

With this growth in voice search powered smart devices will come more opportunities to market to the people that own them. Amazon already spotted this opportunity when it started offering cheaper Kindle devices in exchange for agreeing to receive marketing communications. Targeted Alexa ads are already in the pipeline and the other devices will be sure to follow.

AI-Powered Marketing and Support Technology

Artificial intelligence has been expanding what’s possible in the future of digital marketing for quite a while now, but we’re going to see exponential leaps in what this technology is capable of over the next few years.

Chatbots will become a customer service standard and start replacing live agents more and more frequently as machine learning algorithms grow more complex and are able to emulate human beings with almost spooky accuracy.

Marketing is becoming more conversational and personalized and chatbots enable you to take advantage of this trend without additional strain on your manpower and resources.

AI is also being used in advertising. While it hasn’t quite achieved human levels of creativity, Google is already running ads powered by AI to optimize campaigns by identifying the best-performing ad designs and copy and automatically adjusting based on user engagement.

The Future of Social Media

You may think social media is already pervasive, but it still has room to grow. Social Media currently makes up 33% of all digital ad spending and is projected to increase in 2023. While the future of social media might come in the form of something, well, more social, the growth of these platforms is not likely to subside any time soon.

circle graph showing that social media makes up 33% of all digital marketing spending

Image Source: Hootsuite

Social media will continue to make its presence known in every area of our lives and become truly integrated with both on and offline services.

In an episode of the dystopian Netflix series Black Mirror, social media has spilled out of the screen and into the real world as individuals rate their interactions with others and are awarded better housing, jobs, and social status based on their overall rating.

Science fiction? Maybe for now, but the future probably isn’t so far away. Most of the apps on your phone are probably already sharing data with your social media networks and it’s now common for employers and recruiters to screen social media profiles before interviews.

What does this mean for marketers? A deeper understanding of each customer as an individual and the opportunity to offer highly targeted offers and services, as the AI algorithms used in social media grow increasingly sophisticated.

The Rise of Micro-influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing has already grown huge in recent years with top influencers on platforms like Instagram and YouTube attracting millions of followers and making a six-figure income from their deals with brands.

However influencer marketing is still in its infancy and while it offers great ROI compared to more traditional advertising channels, there are some issues to be ironed out.

Fake followers are currently a problem that’s still being resolved, and there have been some notable occurrences when brand/influencer relationships have backfired in a bad way.

Big name influencers are also starting to lose their power as they take on more and more sponsored posts, reducing the authenticity and impact of their recommendations.

As consumers continue to value individual recommendations over being marketed at, it’s going to make sense to invest more in “micro-influencers” – those social media users who have a much smaller but dedicated following and can deliver truly authentic marketing messages to a trusting audience.

Influencers’ power will be measured not by the sheer number of followers they boast, but their personal relationships with each individual follower.

Augmented Reality Becomes Commonplace

Remember the Pokémon Go craze of 2016? The mobile game was not only a great example of how augmented reality can be used in video games, but also a marketing opportunity, as businesses jumped on the chance to sell to customers trying to catch a Pokémon or two on their doorstep.

Augmented reality is not just a fun gimmick for gamers. It’s being used more and more as a tool for brands to reach customers. In fact, 61% of customers prefer to shop are more likely to purchase items with businesses that have augmented reality services.

circle graphs depicting high likelihood of customer engagement due to augmented reality services

Image Source: CyberGear

Ikea now offers a virtual reality catalog where you can place pieces of furniture in your own home, and fashion brands are starting to use augmented reality to allow their customers to try on outfits virtually in the comfort of their own homes.

Expect to see more brands jumping on the augmented reality bandwagon, and the technology slowly becoming a more common occurrence with serious marketing goals, rather than a cute trick.

Video Overtaking All Other Digital Channels

Savvy marketers have recognized the power of online video for years – back in 2015; The Washington Post predicted that video would account for 80% of all online content by 2020.

We’re not quite there yet, but video is already proving itself as a powerful medium, and we’ve seen a massive rise in live streaming video in particular over the last year or so.

Video marketing can be incredibly effective at boosting engagement levels and the consumer appetite for video shows no sign of slowing down – YouTube is already overtaking Facebook as the second-most visited site (Google is number one, naturally).

If you’ve not fully embraced video in your brand marketing, you’re already lagging behind, but it’s not too late to jump in. With the combination of live video and augmented reality, exciting things are becoming possible and original and creative videos are sure to be the big content channel winner as we head into 2019.

Going Back to Basics with Employee Activation

Of course all these advances in technology are very exciting, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the basic principles that make for a great marketing strategy, and a great company.

Employee activation will enable your organization to get the best out of every employee, who will act as ambassadors for your brand and grow sales and conversions in a genuine and authentic way that’s more effective than any advertising campaign could ever be.

We think this is the biggest B2B Marketing Trend right now!

Referring back to the trend of micro-influencer marketing, when your employees are engaged they will themselves act as micro-influencers for your company. If you are successful in employing individuals who align with your brand values and help their passion for what you’re trying to grow, they will act as your most dedicated cheerleaders.

As our reliance on technology grows, more and more organizations are also realizing they need to be more “human” and must activate the storytelling and organic sharing power of employees – this is the “paradox of AI” as we learn to take our place alongside machines in this brave new world of opportunities.

Outsourcing to Digital Marketing Agencies

Whether you’re a small business or a big one, you can generate more content by outsourcing to a digital marketing agency. Creating enough high-quality content with in-house resources is challenging and can hold you back from taking advantage of growth opportunities.

As the best way to rank on Google, digital marketing is significant to success. So why not outsource the help of marketing experts? 45% of small businesses already have a paid search strategy in place and numbers are expected to rise in 2023.

Help from educated professionals is often the difference between making little progress and seeing significant, continuous improvement in traffic and sales. Sit back, relax and watch your business grow this year by outsourcing to digital marketing agencies.

Where Do You Think Marketing is Going?

There’s lots of room for evolution when it comes to the future of digital marketing. Share your digital marketing predictions for 2023 in the comments below and on social media.

Get ahead of your content marketing strategy for 2023 and secure success with marketing experts today. Consistently share quality content and drive traffic to your website by checking out our Content Builder Service now.

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