What does marketing look like in 2020?

The numbers are in. According to Altimeter's 2019 State of Digital Marketing report, brand is key. 37% of companies have set their sights on brand awareness as a top goal, lead generation comes in second at 26%, whereas only 20% have a focus on customer experience.

From this report one thing is clear: 2020 is a year for businesses to solidify their message and establish trust and authority. So what are the most effective ways businesses can boost their brands in the new decade?

1: Speak-up!

With the rise of home devices, voice searching is changing the way that people use search. There is an increase in the use of Alexa, Siri and Google. 

Voice search will continue to dominate the marketing landscape. This means that rather than searching for connected terms such as 'coffee shop London', your audience is likely to ask 'what is the best coffee shop in London?' Does your site have a page optimised for that question?

2: Be Mobile-led

Since July 2019, Google has been indexing mobile first. This is a result of people's browsing habits changing. 

Most people conduct their browsing on phones and tablets. And yet, many businesses haven't optimised their mobile site. Many website designs are still desktop-led. There's a high likelihood that your competitors are neglecting their mobile usability. Get ahead of the curve!

3: Be AntiSocial

We've all seen the increase of brands fostering an active social media presence. Social media can work, but when you look at the wider picture, it's only successful for an extremely small number of cases. 

Social media activity is, in truth, very rarely profitable. This is because the best marketing works when you can target a specific type of customer. 

Your ideal buyer persona has high purchase-intent, which rarely comes from social media. You're better off finding someone willing to spend money with your business.

Social media activity is, in truth, very rarely profitable.

4: Simple is best

Between algorithm updates and new innovations, digital marketing changes every month. 

Most businesses are now digital, and are fighting for the best digital presence they can get. We can get fixated with analysing websites - from form fields to exit rates. But are we putting our attention where it matters most? 

Rather than worrying about staying on top, apply Occam's Razor: the simplest solution is the best. Find ways to automate your website rather than overcomplicating your service offerings.

5: Nature Vs Nurture

Businesses need to have a purpose. A brand is nothing without a brand goal and as we've discussed above, brand presence is priority for 2020.

Now is the time to think about your Global Goals. What global goal are you going to achieve through your business? What are you striving to accomplish? And don't limit that to internal, either: What are you prepared to tell the world that you are going to accomplish for 2020? How do you intend to put that front-and-center?

How does a business succeed in 2020?

To succeed in 2020, the most important piece of advice is to look at things from every perspective. At Novi, we have built technology that no-one else has to allow us to approach situations from other perspectives. With this, we take a 360 view - internal and external - and measure our success by those standards.

The most common questions we get asked by our clients are:

  • What should I spend?
  • How do I get more sales?
  • How can I improve my rankings?

In most cases, these are the wrong questions to be asking. The truth is that marketing is only as good as the company it's for. So instead, we encourage a different perspective.

Most companies focus on the consequence. The majority of the time, the consequence is sales and money - the procurement of, or lack thereof. But by having an internal-focus - 'how do we do this?' - we're losing sight of the most crucial perspective, that being our customer.

Businesses should be asking questions from the perspective of their customers. Instead of asking 'how do I get more sales,' think about 'why should a customer buy from my business?' At the end of the day, people buy from people after being treated like people.

People buy from people after being treated like people.

Why does Search marketing continue to outperform all other types of marketing?

The key to achieving success in Search Marketing (SEO and PPC) is finding the balance between automation and human engagement. Automating where possible is crucial for ensuring that we work efficiently, but human engagement is still vital for working intelligently.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence is best used to help free up time for people. We should be focusing human workforce on analysing data and conducting longer-term strategies.

What have we learned from the past 10 years?

During our past 10 years of business, we have evolved and iterated successfully time and time again. We were profitable on our first day, and remain so to this day. We are one of very few businesses that has never had outside investment. Instead, we've bootstrapped and focused on reinvesting in ourselves from the outset.

We've been able to achieve this by focusing on what our clients want. We don't try and fit the market to our offerings. Instead, we focus our offerings around what our clients want - and what we know they need.

We specialise in working with businesses that turn over £1m per annum. These range from businesses that serve both B2B and B2C, that have high transaction values. Part of this success comes from playing to our strengths. We have identified seven key sectors that we are best suited for: Finance, Recruitment, Professional Services, Technology, Travel, Education, Property and Luxury Products. 

By specialising in those areas, we are able to conduct extensive research with pin-point accuracy. That way we can know an sector inside and out and specialise our offering for those industries.

Our final advice is to know what sets you apart from the competition, and make sure you express that wherever possible. 

If you've got it, flaunt it.

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