In recent years, the popularity of Internet marketing has increased significantly. Banal, but with such a huge number of new digital technologies and digital platforms that can be used in marketing, it has never been more interesting to engage in advertising, brand representation on the Internet and spend almost all of its time for this.
However, it is always worth remembering, no matter how exciting and interesting the marketing in general was, but the key to a successful strategy and its implementation is the knowledge of what marketing technologies and platforms to use specifically for your business, in order to get the maximum return on investment.
This year, some platforms and technologies, directions and trends have already gained popularity. Some are only gaining a circle of admirers.
But today we will consider them all (well, almost all), so that our readers can imagine how multifaceted online marketing as a whole is, and how many different and seemingly imperceptible opportunities exist to present the company and tell about the brand to the maximum number of users.
How do each of us communicate through personal messages with our friends or acquaintances? Quite often we exchange links to articles, pictures, videos and music. Yay, you and I are the “shadow society” in this particular case in relation to the brand/company that we share the links to.
The fact is that all these images, articles, videos (content in general) are not only distributed through social media channels. They are also distributed among less controlled platforms, and these platforms are often forgotten by marketers due to the fact that it is difficult to track and analyze their activity.
Thus, shadow traffic, shadow society or dark social (there are a lot of names and translations, but the meaning is all the same) is when people exchange content through private channels.
Examples of private channels are:
- Messaging applications (WhatsApp, WeChat and Facebook Messenger)
- Mobile applications (Facebook and Instagram)
- Secure browsing (HTTPS for HTTP)
Why “dark” society? Both Google Analytics and Yandex. As a rule, referral traffic can be identified by certain “tags” attached to the link.
And in case of a “shadow society” all links do not contain referral data. Moreover, in messengers and mail there are no blocks of code for analytics and metrics. Result: it is difficult to track, but it is possible. Unfortunately, that’s not what I’m talking about today.
But, anyway, we should not neglect dark social, because more than half of all social communication is carried out through such “shadow” social channels.
Therefore, brands should start to use chat, chat-bots as a variation that we have already described in detail or mobile messaging applications as part of our marketing strategy.
Mobile sites and applications are needed to increase the number and possibilities of microinteraction or micromoment. What are we talking about? Today, not every second person, but every first person uses a smartphone not only for messaging and phone calls.
People are looking for information, making online purchases. And successful, well-known brands are trying to make sure that at the right time it is them who are asked for “help”.
To make it easier to understand, let’s give an example. There are online shops Girlfriend, L’Etoile, Wildberries, Utkonos. All of them represent products of different categories and different price segments. But all of them allow customers (you and me) to either come to the store, or use a mobile application to order, or the site of the online store.
In some cases, there is only an option of online trading, somewhere – and retail. But all these brands have been around for a long time, and therefore often it is their names that come to mind when you need to buy something urgently (the same powder or “pile” of products for the holiday (it’s if the laziness itself / not time to go / not to go to the shops and choose the product)).
And accordingly, the availability of mobile applications or mobile sites is convenient, as we do not always spend time for MS. We often have smartphones in our hands.
The same is true for information projects. Something is happening all the time in the world, and if something is related to the subject of brand activity, it is simply necessary to react promptly to new developments/events. It is necessary to give people access to such information.
In addition, the ability to provide quick and one-way access to all necessary information becomes the basis for gaining customer confidence and building long-term relationships. Do not neglect the importance of micromoment in your marketing strategy.
Another trend that is gaining popularity in online marketing is authority or Influencer Marketing. In other words, the promotion of a product or service with the help of an authoritative opinion of a person, a place, a character.
This method of advertising is primarily applicable to work with local customers, so often in action credibility can be seen in local social networks. As far as authority is concerned, these are usually people who can and do have a significant impact or already influence the social media platform.
The simplest example is bloggers, who have a large number of subscribers and followers (those who do not subscribe but observe, likes, read, and discuss sometimes). And since all these fans or followers usually trust bloggers, their opinions, their statements, it becomes easier and more convenient to advertise their products/services.
They trust tire reviews, lotions or pizza shops. And in every Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube social network, there are such famous and madly authoritative individuals who can “help” your online marketing.
Or you can develop a strategy so as to have such a personality in your brand, or you can turn into one yourself (although it takes a lot of time, at least).
Video advertising is popular not the first year and is not going to get old. And if you believe that there are different Adblock’s and few people can and do want to see short (15-30 sec) videos – you’re a little wrong. Watching one or two short videos is usually easy. These aren’t just 3 minutes or more and aren’t TV commercials.
In addition, people like to watch videos because the product/service is better understood and seen in action than reading about them and looking for photos.
Often we work a lot with texts, graphics, numbers and when we want to distract ourselves from work, routine, business, we turn to video. So, whether it’s an advertisement or a legscreen or a thin film/serial, but we have a little rest.
In addition, modern advertising videos are created with a small plot, funny characters and so on … they are nice and fun to watch, even if played by Alice’s assistant.
Video is a very attractive marketing content, which will be successful if implemented correctly. And it doesn’t matter whether it’s live video, video or otherwise.