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Featured Digital Marketing Trends from 2018 DMA Statistical Fact Book

Separating the Hot from the Hype

Here’s how the digital marketing story played out in 2016

Digital innovations are changing consumer behavior. And consumer needs are driving digital innovation. Rising to the top are the ones that inspire a user to ask, “How did I live without this before?” TwitterLogo_#55acee

In the 2016 “Hot or Hype” survey, practicing digital marketers reported 22 innovations that were capturing their imagination. After a nationwide quantitative survey, all innovations were scored to determine what’s important and what’s irrelevant. The #1 innovation didn’t even appear on last year’s survey. And last year’s top innovation came in #2, proving that it really is meaningful.

So what are the technologies that are leading the trends and worthy of our attention (and marketing dollars)?

Artificial Intelligence is a Digital Trend
#1 Artificial Intelligence

  • The Guardian reported, “By 2021, robots will have eliminated 6% of all jobs in the U.S., starting with customer service representatives and eventually truck and taxi drivers.”
  • AI scored highest because of the impact on marketing practicesTwitterLogo_#55acee.
  • One survey responder wrote that AI’s influence is to allow us to… “Better anticipate and predict a person’s needs and provide a highly customized brand experience.”
  • With AI, response rates go up, costs go down and waste is minimized.
  • Customers can potentially have immediate resolution to problems–or they may never know they have a problem because machines can predict and resolve issues before the alarm goes off.
  • A more dramatic proof point might be the steep adoption curve of programmatic buying.

Mobile Payments are a Digital Trend
#2 Mobile Payments

  • The return of this innovation on this year’s survey is powered by the growth and adoption of payment apps, new enabling technologies and the fact that the mobile phone has become the primary device of consumers.
  • Mobile payments help make the phone the epicenter of a consumer’s world.
  • Gives consumers direct access to brands and the ability to immediately actTwitterLogo_#55acee.
  • In return, marketers have direct access to consumers through the very same device.
  • Fluid value exchange that offers a rich flow of data about consumer purchase behavior and preferencesTwitterLogo_#55acee.
  • Allows for hyper-personalized customer experiences that can easily be delivered using AITwitterLogo_#55acee.

Digital Collaboration Tools on the Rise
#3 Digital Collaboration Tools

  • We live in a collaboration society in which business success comes from disparate people with diverse skills working together toward a common corporate goal.
  • We also live in an increasingly global world where people who work together don’t necessarily sit in the same office or even the same country.
  • For those two reasons, digital collaboration tools and seamless connectivity have become critical to smooth workflow and improved productivity
  • Inc. presented an interesting counterpoint from a Convene the Conveners session. “…despite all of the resources available to us to collaborate virtually and through digital platforms, there is still a desire to connect in person, look into another person’s eyes and work towards providing new and better solutions for whatever the task ahead.”

Data. Data. Data.
The thread that ties so many innovations together is the collection of data and, more important, how analysis of data leads to insights on ways to innovate furtherTwitterLogo_#55acee.

2017 DMA Statistical Fact Book Byline Excerpt by Neil Feinstein, Assistant Professor at St. John’s University

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