Were our 2016 digital marketing predictions right? | DMA

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Were our 2016 digital marketing predictions right?


It’s been another fast-paced year in the world of digital marketing, with plenty of new trends to explore. So now that we’re over halfway through 2016, we thought we’d revisit a few of the digital marketing predictions we made back in January and see how accurate they were.

“Customer service won’t work in 2016 without social media”

Millions of customer service-related interactions occur every month on social media, and from Twitter’s new customer service tools to Facebook messenger for brands, in the last few months social platforms have gone even further to help brands and consumers communicate with ease. Looks like we were right.

The convenience and real-time nature of social media often makes it the first port of call for customers with queries, especially amongst younger generations. So it’s a good idea to dedicate time and budget to making sure your customers can get answers through your social channels without having to wait too long.

Customers don’t want to sacrifice good service for speed, however. Quick cut-and-paste answers won’t cut it – brands need to work on getting the infrastructure in place to provide real answers rather than generic responses. If you can’t provide around-the-clock support on social media, make sure you advertise your social opening hours and be up-front with customers about response times.

“2016 will be all about the rise of the Instagram influencer”

Since we made our predictions, Instagram has hit half a billion monthly users. The Facebook-owned photo- and video-sharing platform is a mine of opportunity for brands, be it through advertising or partnering with influencers.

By arranging endorsements from like-minded individuals with a high number of followers, brands are tapping into a lucrative method of marketing that’s guaranteed to get their name or product in front of their target audience. A recent US study put influencer marketing at 11 times more effective than banner ads – which would explain why it’s now commonplace on Instagram. Another victory for our predictions team.

“Cheap, homemade stunt videos will become ever present for brands in 2016”

Last year, Mark Zuckerberg predicted that within five years Facebook feeds will mostly be video. And a quick scroll through our timelines tells us he’s not wrong. With 8 billion video views occurring daily on Facebook, and a similar number taking place on Snapchat, there’s a clear demand for video content, including live video.

The sheer volume and real-time nature of shareable video coupled with the speed at which social media moves has meant that brands are forgoing the polished production and opting instead for cheap, homemade videos to publish on their social channels.

Whether it’s Coca-Cola, Playstation, GoPro or Jamie’s Italian, the DIY behind-the-scenes style makes video instantly more relatable and shareable. From Vine to Snapchat to Boomerang, right across the channels we’re seeing brands use their consumers’ own visual language to grab attention without throwing the usual polished yet ignorable content at them and hoping that it sticks. The best part? It’s easy on the budget, too. Looks like we got this one right as well.

Want us to help take care of your marketing’s future? Get in touch with our team, or find out more about visual sharing tactics in our free eguide.

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