Top Lead-Generation Trends for 2013
Facebook launched in 2004, and its global popularity signaled the death knell of the old way of doing things. From communication to information gathering to marketing, it was a brave new world and marketers needed to either adapt to the new social landscape or risk going the way of the dodo. The last two or three years have seen even more monumental changes in how technology informs modern marketing, mostly due to the smartphone revolution taking hold.
The question all modern marketers now need to ask themselves is this: How can I use mobile and social to properly analyze and plan lead development strategies? Well, the answer to this question is intricate and multi-faceted, as the marketing landscape shifts on a regular basis with the coming of each new trend. This means the marketers of today need to stay on their toes and abreast of all changes.
With that in mind, here are some lead-generation trends marketers can expect to see in the coming year.
More mobile commerce
Those marketers not in the know regarding Quick Response (QR) codes are going to want to educate themselves sooner rather than later. At the moment, there are over a billion smartphone users in the world, and these users are growing by 42% annually. QR codes can be applied to any product and read by any smartphone. And with the rise in popularity of mobile commerce and merchant apps such as PayPal and Square, the trend is only going to continue through 2013.
For example, In 2011, UK supermarket giant Tesco tested the waters of virtual grocery shopping by outfitting subway stations in South Korea with electronic kiosks fully stocked with virtual store products. Customers simply swiped the QR code with their smartphones and within a day a bag of groceries arrived at their doorstep. This is where mobile commerce is heading, and it doesn’t stop there. Lead-generation will be composed of a wide array of mobile tactics, including check-in promotions via social media, Bluetooth communications and mobile, email and text/SMS advertising.
In short, those marketers without a comprehensive mobile strategy would be wise to get the ball rolling.
A rise in personalization
Google + is leading the charge in the fight to integrate social media with basic Internet searches. This means an online experience tailored to each individual’s wants and needs. New technology in personalization will give Internet users greater control of the types of marketing messages and emails they receive. This is good news for marketers, as these new technologies will allow precise segmentation of target audiences and provide more targeted leads than ever before.
Location, location, location
Location-based social media sites, such as Gowalla and Foursquare, exploded on the scene in 2011, and this trend will only continue its upward trajectory in 2013. Location-based social sites allow users to check in wherever they may be at any given time. All marketers need to do to capitalize on this trend is to check users comments regarding certain popular spots as well as the popular products offered at these spots.
Marketers should also consider diving headfirst into the world of location-based social media and creating a page with local offers and clever promotions in order to generate buzz and build a following.
More mobile applications
With the rise in mobile came the rise in mobile apps. Indeed, it is an app-crazy world and this popularity shows no sign of abating in the coming year. But while some apps are fun diversions, the most popular also happen to be the most useful. Modern consumers use mobile apps as useful tools in which to facilitate their needs, and this in turn becomes useful for inbound marketers as well.
Modern marketers may not need their own mobile app to build brand loyalty, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt. Of course, those looking to develop their own app should be aware of the high standards consumers place on these items. For an application to truly be a success, it needs to be of real-world use to the consumer and provide high functionality. Above all, it must keep the consumer engaged.
These are just a few things marketers may want to keep in mind for the coming year. Above all else, information integration will be crucial in 2013. Because with increased segmentation and the sheer number of modern ways to gather information, marketers will need to integrate this ocean of data from top to bottom. That means ensuring everything is fully connected, from leads to nurturing programs to service.
“Guest post contributed by Matthew Rayfield on behalf of