The Best of Marketing Trends and What You Can Learn from Them

It’s often been said that imitation is the highest form of flattery. It’s how great trends are born, in everything from fashion to literature to — of course — marketing. Below are three of the most popular trends in marketing and advertising that are rapidly gaining traction, as well as some innovative and influential campaigns that have executed them perfectly. These ideas can serve as inspiration in your campaigns.

Storytelling

In the age of content marketing and brand loyalty, your brand’s personality is best conveyed through stories — it may be your own, it may be your customer’s, it may be a new narrative simply meant to entertain your audience and convey your message creatively.

One campaign that stands out both in popularity and originality is that of Dove, a personal care brand that began its “Dove Campaign for Real Beauty” mission more than a decade ago. While the content has evolved over the years, the brand has continued to champion a message of embracing the natural and authentic.

Setting itself apart from its competitors by dissecting the strategies and beliefs that many beauty brands embrace, Dove’s efforts have resulted in several viral videos, including one that includes testimonials from women revealing their insecurities. By telling the relatable and accessible stories of its customers, Dove has managed to establish itself as just that: relatable and accessible. If you have a message or story that moves and motivates you, take a page from Dove’s book and let it drive your storytelling.

Social Media

The user- and budget- friendly nature of social media marketing, as well as the sheer number of people who are active on social media each day, have made the internet a prime target for brands looking to connect with their audience. The diversity in platforms and often built-in analytics tools make it easier than ever to understand how to find your audience, as well as what that audience is seeking and how it is responding.

One of the most impressive stories of social media marketing comes from eyewear brand Warby Parker. With more than 700,000 Facebook followers, 400,000 Instagram followers, and 4 million views on Pinterest, the company has steadily gained a following over the past few years.

On Facebook, its posts include everything from video interviews, to a look at the company’s manufacturing process, to images of new products, all designed to encourage audience feedback. On Snapchat, the company has tailored campaigns to be exclusive, even offering a pair of glasses available only through that particular app. Warby Parker is just as active on Instagram, posting weekly “stories” that showcase the company’s favorite photos submitted by fans.

One of its services — a home try-on, which allows customers to order five pairs of glasses to keep for a few days and choose their favorites — has gained even more popularity through the company’s app. Here, customers post photos of themselves with each pair, and their friends can interact with the post by liking or commenting. Ideas like these perfectly integrate the product and the platform, and ultimately lead to a boost in audience engagement, user-generated content and brand awareness.

Experiential

Often associated with event marketing, experiential marketing campaigns are those that immerse your audience in an experience. This might come in the form of a convention, pop-up locations or other temporary installations. Much like campaigns on social media, these allow you to interact immediately with your audience, but are more personal, immersive and creative. Experiential marketing’s effects last long after the actual event is over, with the ability to share video and testimonials received, create content from feedback, and continue the conversation online.

Netflix has proved to be an innovator in the world of experiential marketing. In 2016, the company announced it would be premiering a new season of “Gilmore Girls,” a beloved show that ran from 2000 to 2007. Shortly before its premiere, the already hotly anticipated show got even more buzz when Netflix announced a series of “Luke’s Diner” pop-up coffee shops, modeled after the main characters’ signature meeting spot. Audiences got a chance to experience a part of their favorite show for themselves, and news of the locations spread quickly across traditional and social media alike. A similar campaign for sci-fi show “Altered Carbon” generated a boost in interest from audiences in 2018 when they surprised attendees of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas with a fake booth to promote the show’s fictional product.

While Netflix’s broad range of content gives the company a bit more room for creativity than other entities, businesses can still learn from its initiatives when it comes to creating an engaging campaign that excites audiences.

About the author

Cherise Czaban

Cherise Czaban

Cherise Czaban is the publisher of i4 Business magazine and the CEO of i4 Business LLC. She formerly served as vice president of business development for SCB Marketing, the previous publishers of i4 Business.

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