Being a marketer in 2015 has been really, really fun. The puzzle of digital ROI is starting to form a clear picture, with “buy” buttons and actionable CTAs converting more customers than ever before online. Word of mouth is finally being quantified, with influencer marketing and brand ambassador programs making brand advocacy an actual value metric to color in the hollow lines of impressions and reach. And with 59% of marketers planning to increase their influencer marketing budgets over the next 12 months (Tomoson), budgets are finally beginning to carve out spending that values relationships over vanity.
With these exciting industry advancements, we’ve turned to a group of our admirable and progressive peers to help us predict and prepare for the future. For the next 24 days, we’re bringing you answers to some big questions, from some of the best in the industry. Feel free to add your commentary in the comments, or on any of our social channels. We can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store for us, and we hope you’ll be along for the ride.
Kicking us off is the great Mark Schaefer. Mark is a college educator, marketing consultant, and author of five marketing books including The Content Code. We were lucky enough to get his take on 2016 trends, turns of phrase, and overall insight.
What role do you see Influencer Marketing playing in brand marketing strategies in 2016?
This is quite an interesting field right now. From a brand perspective, this is certainly growing in importance as they are challenged to get their message through across many platforms. Also interesting from the influencer perspective — a case of too much demand and not enough supply. I read that some “citizen influencers” are being signed up to ad agency contracts.
What is the most widespread mistake you’ve seen brand marketers make in 2015 that you hope they learn from in 2016?
Not a mistake really but a missed opportunity. There are still too many silos in the business standing in the way of truly integrated marketing. I realize it is difficult to knock down organizational walls but this has to happen to really optimize the digital marketing effort.
What word do you hope is officially banned from the marketing vernacular in 2016?
What marketing events are you most looking forward to in 2016?
I really cherish my time at SXSW each year because I am exposed to so many interesting new ideas and new people.