Digital Marketing continues to grow and overtake more traditional means of marketing. With around 56% of local business owners planning to increase their marketing budgets in 2016 to accommodate a big focus on digital marketing. Marketing channels that will see the biggest investment include email, social media, display, mobile and search (SEO/PPC).

The 3 key trends will help increase their momentum and ability to compete on a higher level with competitors.

  1. Social Media

Most small businesses should have a presence on social media by now, especially Facebook. However 2016 will see companies investing in professional take over of their media channels in order to create higher engagement & perfected brand image. Many businesses see publishing posts & updates as a marketing strategy, regardless of who’s reading. Unfortunately this isn’t valued within the marketing industry, whilst likes are important, engagement and clicks far surpass the value of just ‘posting an update’. Customers want to feel like the business is interested, accessible and ‘with it’.

Small business owners also need to be thinking about what they can do to connect beyond their core “friends and family” network. Facebook, Twitter and other platforms such as Pinterest also offer paid media opportunities to serve targeted ads to potential customers in addition to simply engaging their existing followers. This is where seeking a great digital marketing agency can be essential to the success of your marketing plan.

  1. DIFM (Do It For Me)

In 2015, we saw a surge of small businesses take on the DIY approach to social media ads however they quickly became overwhelmed with marketing options, all designed to allow them to quickly get online and reach new customers. Spurred on by the introduction of Google AdWords.

Now, however, we’re starting to see a robust segment of small and medium business proprietors  adopting a “DIFM” – Do It For Me approach. Service expectations are rising while businesses are fatigued by trying to figure it all out on their own. They want to understand what’s working and what’s not, and they want help in doing so.

Most business owners don’t know that social media actually aids SEO as well as marketing, that’s where the DIY approach falls short. With technology constantly changing it’s important to seek professionals who have the upper hand and futuristic vision for your business.

  1. CRM

2016 will see small business owners using more robust CRM systems that allow them to go beyond simple email distribution lists and connect all their digital channels. 

Businesses can start correspondence via email with special offers to loyal customers and complement those communications with text reminders about weekend in-store sales or even add send a birthday card mailed to homes offering discounts.

This is the year for businesses to really give their customers that personal touch in order to create a vision of connection between the consumer and brand, creating loyalty.

So to sum up, invest in your digital marketing plan if you want to stay ahead of the game. For more information see www.omnidigitalmarketing.co.uk