Four crucial trends that will alter digital marketing in 2023

From mindfulness and empathy to quality and honesty... Glass Digital's Creative Director gives us his trends this year

In the ever-changing world of digital marketing, it’s important to keep on top of the trends to get ahead of the competition. Of course, trends are often led by current events, but as we leave a year unlike any other, 2023 offers some unique challenges for marketing. At Glass Digital, we rounded up some of the biggest digital marketing trends for 2023 and noticed just how many are influenced by the current cultural landscape. Below, I’ll be discussing the trends that will resonate with audiences as we tackle the new year.

Mindfulness and empathy are key

This year is already one of uncertainty, and brands need to recognise particular difficulties their audience may be facing and react to them mindfully and appropriately. The cost of living crisis and inflation are going to be major factors for marketers to get right. If you’re going to address the issue, the tone needs to be spot-on to be helpful without being patronising. So, think about every aspect of your campaign before going ahead. Is it genuinely useful? Does this kind of content look right and come from your brand?

A great example is Asda’s discounted meals for children and the over the 60s, which were far from performative. The supermarket powerhouse recognised its role in the cost of living crisis and offered a solution that was genuinely helpful to its customers.

Conversely, OVO Energy faced backlash after releasing a set of tips for staying warm, which included cuddling pets and eating porridge. While the initial idea was well-intentioned, the energy giant didn’t consider how these tips would be received coming from their brand. The company quickly apologised for its “poorly judged and unhelpful” content.

Quality and honesty will reign supreme

Understandably, everyone is a little more sceptical of what they see on the internet these days, which is why 2023 will see an even bigger focus on trustworthiness and honesty. It’s something Google has been working to correct: the release of the helpful content update last summer was yet another step towards populating search results with genuinely useful content.

For marketers, this means an increased focus on original and honest content that provides a genuine insight into a service or product. How exactly can marketers do this? By making use of user-generated content (UGC). Your audience should be at the centre of everything you do, and personal content that focuses on the ‘real’ rather than the ‘ideal’ is increasingly in demand. Assets like case studies, interviews, and reviews can all be used to give customers a raw insight into your brand.

Alternative platforms take centre stage

As UGC grows, so does video content. YouTube was the second most popular social media platform in 2022, with 2.56 billion monthly active users (Statista). When you factor in the audience for Instagram (1.48 billion) and TikTok (1 billion), that’s over five billion users looking for primarily visual content. Video assets are therefore becoming increasingly vital for brands to make part of their marketing strategy.

TikTok in particular is taking the internet world by storm, with its latest ad campaign promoting the app’s search engine capabilities. Add to that the rise of TikTok Shopping, and the video-sharing platform is definitely one to watch.

While it may not yet be large enough to rival Google or Amazon, sites like TikTok open up more opportunities for paid search teams to diversify their campaigns. Google and Facebook have previously been a priority for PPC, but in 2023 marketing teams will be allocating bigger budgets to video apps like TikTok and YouTube, to reach newer audiences at various touch points.

Influencer marketing gets an upgrade

With so many new opportunities opening up, marketers will be looking for more efficient ways to monitor their campaigns across each platform. Many affiliate networks are now offering influencer tools which not only monitor progress but can make it easier for affiliate marketers to manage strategies, find the right influencer, and award commission.

As many marketers will be adjusting their campaigns to prepare for cookie-less tracking next year, influencer marketing will be vital for retaining existing customers. So, these new tools certainly won’t go amiss.

As 2023 brings its own unique challenges, these are just some of the ways marketers can design a mindful, honest strategy and deliver it to the right audience. For more marketing tips, be sure to take a look at the MediaCat commerce section.

Featured Image: May Gauthier / Unsplash

Jonathan Birch, Creative Director, Glass Digital

Jonny works closely with the outreach and content teams to ensure that all Glass Digital clients receive the very best creative PR and content marketing campaigns. In his spare time, he regularly goes to the gym and enjoys getting involved in various charitable projects.

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