2019, The Year Brands Become Honest
January is finally over! So we’ve put together our predictions for the trends driving the Marketing Industry this year.
Last year we saw brands such as Nike speak up about social issues in their campaigns. This year, we’ve already seen a few brands jump on the bandwagon! Take Gillette’s controversial “The Best Men Can Be” campaign for example.
Consumers are now demanding that their favourite brands are ethical and honest. This will make 2019 the year that brands realise that sitting on the fence on social issues might actually negatively affect their brand image.
Redefining the retail experience
The high street is dead. Or at least that’s what we heard last year… Over 1,200 retail stores closed in 2018, including big-name brands such as Debenhams. However, some retailers are challenging this decline by reinventing their stores. John Lewis and Halifax are two brands that launched new experiential stores in 2018, offering services such as style studios, games areas and one-off instore events.
Brands have clocked on that consumers value experiences more than things – and we think they’ll be stepping their game up in 2019.
The rise of the micro-influencer
From Logan Paul’s suicide forest vlog to Laura Lee’s racist comments, we’ve seen brands’ sponsorship of popular influencers go wrong recently. But emerging from the dust are the ‘micro-influencers’ – social media influencers with between 2,000 to 50,000 followers. Brands will definitely start working with smaller influencers this year, as they aim to be more authentic and offer a personalised experience.
The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in marketing has become really popular over the last few years. AI powers things like online chatbots, targeted advertising and automatically-generated content. As technology develops throughout the year, AI will continue to be a key innovator for the marketing industry.
Facebook’s data misuse scandal last year made consumers are a lot more clued-up on their rights to data privacy, though. That means that brands need to be careful in how they use AI this year.
We don’t know exactly what effect Brexit will have on the marketing industry yet. But in the worst-case scenario, it’s been predicted that Brexit could cause a decrease in marketing spend due to lower demand and smaller margins. On the other hand, a good deal could increase sales and consumer confidence.
Either way, it’s important for marketers to have a plan in place. We think brands will be pushed to do this (if they haven’t already) especially since Theresa May’s original Brexit deal plan was rejected last month.
It’s clear that the industry’s goal is to earn consumers’ trust this year. Meaning brands will need to be transparent, authentic and consistent to achieve this. We’re excited to see how this plays out in 2019!