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5 Surprising Marketing Predictions for 2017 – and What We’ve Learned from 2016

January 03, 2017

By Sherice Jacob

2016 has been an exciting year full of unexpected booms and busts in the marketing and technology world, making us look toward 2017 with eager anticipation. So what predictions came true and which ones started with a bang, but ultimately fizzled out? Let’s take a closer look:

1. Blended Marketing Continued to Dominate in 2016

To the surprise of no one who monitors these kinds of things, mobile marketing continued to dominate the web as I predicted back at the end of 2015. However, just as the incredible rise of ad blockers on the web has filtered out much of the advertising noise, so too are consumer bombarded by omni-channel offers that don’t really meet their needs, or happen at inopportune times.

As a result, consumers are being much more selective about the apps they install, the sites they visit and the emails they receive. If you’re not doing enough to stay at the top of their minds in ways that aren’t intrusive, you’re giving yourself a one-way ticket to UnsubscribeLand.

This is why many businesses look at omni-channel as more risk than reward. Do you really want to be everywhere the customer is all the time? Does the customer want you to be? Are you more of an elegant butterfly in their minds, or a pesky fly? If you don’t take the time to refine and chart your marketing course appropriately, they’ll make that decision for you.

Social media and mobile media continued to blur the lines with integrated shopping, recommendations, videos and reviews – creating an even greater push to get noticed among the amalgamated chunk of product pitches, retargeting ads and “I’m-an-authority-look-at-me” videos. As more and more advertisers step up to the plate, they look at what others are doing and then copy their efforts – rather than test on their own to see what their unique audience would respond to.

And, in an effort to get in on this big, blended push, Google shifted its search results to include video, recent news, location information and other details to help match the user with their search request even faster and more thoroughly than before.

So if everything’s coming together in a more finely-tuned customer experience, what didn’t really take off as well as we expected it to?

2. From Lifestyle Apps to Augmented Reality

I had originally predicted that 2016 would see the rise and greater adoption of lifestyle apps – meaning apps that people installed as a reflection of who they were. These could be a combination fitness-weather-diet tracker app rather than having apps for all three of these items. But the looming spectre of data overages constantly nipping at their heels means developers have tended to go easy on what’s available via app versus the much more open and accommodating web.

What stirred everyone’s imagination was augmented reality. The undisputed summer hit was Pokemon Go, but it, too, failed to gain much traction after the initial buzz wore off. Still, it was a masterpiece of gamification and as mobile becomes more powerful, we can …read more

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