If your New Year’s resolutions include staying ahead of the curve, this article is for you. We’ve separated the wheat from the chaff (sorry for that paleo & gluten-free friends) to focus on today’s mega-issues for marketers.
1: The Steady Rise of Voice Search.
Yep, just when your SEO team thought they had mastered the game, Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri change the way we all search. Now it’s less about keywords and more about answering very real and human questions.
Smart speakers play a huge role in this trend. According to Canalys research, smart-speakers grew by 82.4% in 2019 and will overtake tablets by 2021 with over 400 million installations. In fact, the use of Google Assistant has quadrupled in just one year.
What to do about it: Start thinking about the questions that prospects and customers will be asking and insert those questions in headers. In addition, adjust web content so that it has a natural and conversation tone that voice assistants can easily use to answer questions. This will also help with Google’s use of snippets which answer a question at the top of a search page before the top search results.
2: Distrust of digital media.
A decade ago, we feared that print was dead and produced numerous studies to prove its value. We know better than that now. People spend more time with print which translates into more emotional involvement and retention of content. Then, there’s the new trust issue.
Given the public’s fear of fake news, artificial intelligence and online privacy, digital content has some trust to be regained. 86% of people in a recent survey believe there’s a fake news problem and 50% adjusted their social media privacy settings.
What to do about it: Uphold authenticity as a #1 trait, align with trustworthy online media outlets and consider the added value of print as a trusted and valuable medium.
3: Consumer data protection as a priority.
Remember a few years back when half of all Americans had personal data stolen as the result of a breach at Equifax? You’d expect the U.S. to have an overall data protection law in place by now but it is stalled in Congress. California and the European Union, however, have charged ahead and enacted laws which may already affect your marketing database. If you have customer data from EU citizens, you are already subject to the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation.
What to do about it: Rather than scrambling to meet whatever legislation makes its way through Congress, why not reassure customers today? You can find the EU’s checklist for compliance here. It’s one smart way to stay ahead of the curve for 2020 and beyond.