As ever the landscape of digital marketing is changing presenting new challenges and some opportunities. In the past decade, there has been the emergence of demand for brand transparency and measurement. Automation and insight are also clear on the horizon. Despite the changes businesses are still grappling with ongoing challenges such as building a strong brand, bridging the tech-gap, and releasing the Amazon choke-hold. The challenges might seem insurmountable at times, but there are heartening signs of progress.
Declining Organic Reach
Algorithm changes at the biggest social media sites, namely Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – also owned by Facebook – have made it harder for brands to reach customers. Users of the platforms are now seeing more posts from friends and family forcing companies to spend more on advertising. The theory is that’s what users of the platform want, however, evidence suggests that relevant brand advertising is also popular. There are some workaround solutions to these unforeseen obstacles – content optimised for a specific social media sites works well, as does featuring someone else’s content.
Building a Brand Name
As with evolution where the strong survive and the weak die off, the internet has become a place of survival and finding new ways to get ahead. Big brands like Amazon have staked a claim as the number one e-commerce shop for most things meaning smaller ones need to work twice as hard to win the attention of prospective customers. While it can be a difficult uphill struggle at times it’s not impossible to play smart rather than big. Marketing agencies like R6 Digital can help with important graphic design to support small brands. Small brands can also offer offline content such as catalogues and magazines to help develop their reputations and make them more recognisable online. It isn’t easy but remember, the big-toothed dinosaurs were the first to die out!
Bridging The Tech Gap
The tech gap in marketing is a bit like a figure of eight racing track where every so often the points come closer only to move away again. The level of personalisation and targeted advertising available to most brands today was reserved only for those who could afford it ten years ago. This might sound like a great leveller for those companies not streaks ahead, but they now use AI technology to scan big data for the most precise marketing personas. The good news is that they won’t have a monopoly on it forever.
SEO and related strategies are here to stay even with the emergence of video as an alternative to text-based methods. More and more brands are embracing the basic strategies of SEO such as link-building and UX checks and reviews. There are challenges around a saturated digital environment and a reduction in outsourced SEO services as more brands learn the trade. Other potential challenges exist, as ever, around the search engine algorithms and how they decide to flex.
The Amazon Choke-Hold
Giant ecommerce aggregators like Amazon present big challenges to nearly all B2C brands in the marketplace. Strongly branded products are being outcompeted by cheaper alternatives that are often substandard. Add to this the difficulties of gaining direct traffic and you have an almost insurmountable challenge. Despite some effort by Amazon to regulate the marketplace brands are finding it evermore difficult to survive. There is no quick or easy solution to this, just keep moving forward one step at a time.