7 Trends Marketers Are Actually Buying, and 5 They're Clearly Not
At right is, to me, the most interesting chart in our "2015 Media Usage Survey." This chart reveals which trendy new marketing tactics are actually gaining traction with Target Marketing readers, and which ones aren't.
It's easy to hear that direct marketers are using content marketing, but it's just talk without the numbers to back it up (and often the talk comes from a vendor with something to sell you in that field). But here we can see that, in fact, 56 percent of Target Marketing readers are increasing content marketing budgets, and only 18 percent aren't using it.
Compare that to 2D barcodes, like QR Codes, which 59 percent of our readers don't use, and only 14 percent are increasing budgets on it. Augmented reality fared even worse: 82 percent don't use, only 5 percent increasing budgets. NFC was the same, 80 percent not using, 6 percent increasing budgets. Podcasts: 73 percent not using (regardless of all the great buzz about "Serial"). Mobile SMS and MMS: 61 percent not using. Variable data printing (VDP): 66 percent not using. (That last one honestly, surprised me.)
So what new technologies and marketing tactics are catching on? (Besides content marketing?)
Online video and personalization both showed large gains, with 48 percent of respondents increasing budgets for each. (That's what surprised me about VDP: Are marketers increasing personalization spending, but not applying it to direct mail? Are some using it but don't realize that's what it's called? I can't say interest in VDP is clear to me one way or the other.)
Mobile also showed well with 44 percent increasing spending on mobile optimization. (Which is encouraging to hear with Google D-Day approaching.)
Lead nurturing has 44 percent of respondents increasing budgets. That goes hand-in-hand with the 36 percent increasing spending on marketing automation (plus another 25 percent holding that budget steady). The 43 percent investing more in data management and visualization are likely looking at lead nurturing investments as well. (Obviously they're not looking at Big Data, which 57 percent aren't using.)
So all together, here are the ...
7 Trends Marketers Are Actually Buying:
- Content Marketing
- Online Video
- Mobile Optimization
- Lead Nurturing
- Marketing Automation
- Data Management and Visualization
And 5 They're Clearly Not:
- 2D Barcodes
- Augmented Reality
- Mobile texts (SMS and MMS)
One other thing leaps out of this chart to me: There's no tactic for which more than 3 percent of respondents are decreasing spending. Surely something has to be abandoned in order to invest in something else? Right?
What hot marketing trends are you putting your money behind? Are there any you've tried and moved on from? What was your biggest marketing investment flop? Tell us in the comments below.