As Ke enters its 11th year in the digital marketing space, it’s pretty crazy to think about how much the industry has evolved in that time. When you look at just Courtney and I, we account for over 25 years in the digital marketing industry. To say that we have seen a thing or two is an understatement. None of the current social media platforms were more than 9 years old when we started, and some didn’t even exist yet. Nearly 750,000 social posts later, we are still rolling along. Each year, I put together predictions on what the next year has in store. I’ve gotten pretty close some years, and missed by a mile on some. Let’s review a couple from last year and see how close I got:
I said that Twitter Ads would become more relevant, and with their goal of doubling revenue by the end of 2023, I saw that this would be a must. Never did I imagine the shake up that would happen at Twitter in 2022. With that said, I am doubling down on this that in order for Twitter to be viable in 2023 and beyond, their ad network must improve and become easier for small businesses to engage.
I also boldly said that Meta would become more mainstream. While they have really tried to make this happen, it is slower than they would have anticipated and much much more expensive to attack a multitude of users to the metaverse.
So what are my top picks for 2023?
Employee advocacy and engagement – The workforce has changed a lot since March of 2020 (thanks, captain obvious). Work from home has become mainstream, and while several companies are going back to the office, many are sticking with a hybrid WFH model. The thought of a deepening recession may cause some employers to want to pull their employees back into the office since they may have a stronger leverage than they have in recent years. There are two camps on this – company culture is built in the office, and the other is that remote work creates happier employees, which in turn are likely just as productive. I believe that companies will depend more on their employees to help spread the message both from a recruiting tool, but also for simple marketing. Utilizing employees for company and culture advocacy through social channels will most definitely grow in 2023 – regardless of which camp you are in.
Video – We have been talking about video for over 10 years at KreativElement and this year is no different. 86% of businesses use video as a marketing tool and 92% value it as an important part of their strategy according to Wyzowl. The question is, are you using it? And if so, in what capacity? Explainer videos are expected to grow and still be the most widely used form of corporate video. Think about the task that you do on repeat, you do it with every single person that applies, or the same questions get asked and answered about your product. When you take video and make it part of your strategy, you save employee time and ensure that the same consistent message is given every time. This doesn’t mean that other formats aren’t growing as well. I still see a huge potential in social, sales, product, training, and even customer service videos.
Strategy – The Content Marketing Institute found that 78% of marketers have a strategic approach to managing content, however, just over 50% actually have a documented strategy in place to reference. This is interesting to know since we have been documenting our strategic plans with our clients quarterly for years. Some people are adventurous when they get in the car or on a motorcycle and just go, no plans, no map, just ride or drive and where the road takes them is where they end up. I’m not that brave – I have to have a plan, and a strategy guide is the way there. If you are like the 49% of marketers that don’t have a written strategy plan, please let us know, as we can help!
Pay to Play – Digital ad spend will continue to grow, however will slow a little in 2023 before growing higher in 2024 according to eMarketer. We are expecting a 12.4% increase in marketing ad spend in 2023, down from a 14.6% increase in 2022. In all, it’s estimated that companies will spend over 7 billion in ads for the first time with B2B companies accounting for 30% of that total spend. So yes, your customers are on digital, even the business kind.
In closing, 2023 looks to be very similar to 2009 regarding the job market, economy, and other factors. Just like in similar times throughout history, those that doubled down and invested in marketing for their companies saw market shares increase and become more and more relevant as others reduced their spending. You can’t cut your way to prosperity, but you can be smart with where your marketing dollars go – Have a written plan and execute on it to maximize your 2023 marketing.