2024 feels like an inflection point on the internet. People are rearing for a shakeup in their digital world.
It’ll be interesting to watch, based on what went down in 2023:
- We had a whole new platform, Threads, come onto the scene trying to shunt Twitter (now X) into oblivion.
- Instagram is sidelining static posts and turning to Reels – and it’s paying dividends. You might have noticed your friends sharing Reels far more now. Our feeds continue to shift from social platforms to entertainment platforms.
- People are moving to group chats as their main way to keep up with loved ones. I can live without an Instagram feed, but I can’t live without my Instagram DMs. So I keep coming back to the app: deleting it feels harder by the day.
Then… yes. There’s AI.
I promise I won’t make you read a paragraph then say “Shock! Horror! That was written by a robot!”
ChatGPT and Bard could drastically shift what the web is made of. Middling level content made by AI is making some fantastic memes, and more robots will be vying for the attention of Google, Meta and TikTok’s algorithms.
Maybe that’s why we’re approaching an inflection point this year. There’s so much content online, and even more coming with the breaking tidal wave of AI created content. People’s habits are changing, but what they’re changing into isn’t clear yet.
Often, reflecting on the state of your digital marketing can help with this uncertainty. How is your digital marketing going? What should you look out for in 2024? We’ve got some things to remember when you’re reviewing your digital marketing this year.
Use your digital presence to build long term relationships
Nothing insulates your marketing from uncertainty better than building long term direct relationships with your customers. If you can only access your customers through TikTok or Facebook, you don’t have a secure connection to them. Have their contact information. Make it worthwhile for them to regularly visit your website. Above all else, give them a clear reason to want to support you.
Your marketing should be the first word in a conversation that lasts years with your audiences – otherwise they’ll forever be an audience you’re renting from big platforms.
So, in 2024, consider this: how does your digital advertising build a long term relationship between your organisation and your customers?
A quality customer journey and clear messaging will mean your advertising is a long term play rather than a sugar rush. With time, your digital presence will be supporting your business sustainability, rather than getting endless reactions with no sales.
Splendid Photo in Wellington is an incredible example of this strategy. I’m an avid film photographer, and I could go to a plethora of places for buying and developing film. I stick with Splendid.
That’s because I know them as a friendly team who are honest, local, and do a good job because they love photography. Those ideas are their brand in a nutshell.
Best of all, they strengthen these ideas with their social platforms. Every week they give away free film development to someone who posted a photo they developed. They celebrate the local community, and build their reputation amongst professionals and amateurs alike.
Direct your digital strategy towards the goal of building long term relationships that you have the keys to. All other metrics come second. Have a long term strategy to keep customers yours – and make sure your digital marketing feeds that.
Where possible, differentiate
Marketing has some fundamental methods that work well: things like testimonials, special offers and events. These can form the bedrock of your digital marketing strategy.
It can be hard to differentiate when everyone runs by the same playbook, though. That’s why in 2024, digital marketing that stands out is so important.
Delivereasy stands out in this regard. They’re doing things differently than giants Doordash and UberEats on all channels. Their digital marketing is simple and funny. Their out of home billboards are rough cut and vibrant. They’re not afraid to layer stranger approaches on top of your typical 50% discount codes. It stands out compared to the Instagram coffee shop look of UberEats’ ads.
Many of their weird ideas won’t work – but they’re not meant to. They’re meant to make Deliveryeasy stand out from the crowd. Which they definitely do.
It’s hard to stand out if you do what the others do. So in 2024, make sure your marketing has space for experimentation.
Stay skeptical of the magic bullet
Anyone who promises a magic bullet solution that will rake in lots of money with no downsides either doesn’t understand the situation, or is misleading you. Digital marketing, like finance or any other industry, has its fair share of these promises.
Since the beginning, Aro has been working to counter the parts of the industry that promise magic bullets and can’t deliver. There is no magic bullet to growing your business – it takes work and time and things go wrong. That’s the nature of the game. That’s why we focus on good foundations, savvy marketing spending and avoiding vanity metrics.
How does this fit into your digital marketing plans in 2024? Essentially, we recommend taking a skeptical lens to anything new that promises the world.
2024 might have a few players singing the praises of this decade’s pivot to video. It might be someone arguing that you should replace your content team with ChatGPT… so you lose your loyal audience and rely more on Google’s search traffic.
Or it might be a new social platform that promises big engagement, convinces you to neglect other means of contacting your audience, then changes their algorithm so you need to pay for reach.
These strategies have happened before and absolutely will happen again. That’s especially true with the shifting tides of the internet in 2024.
Relying on a magic bullet is not the long term way to succeed online. You want to set your digital marketing up with solid foundations – a good search strategy, a social strategy which builds long term direct relationships with customers, and keeping a skeptical view of magic bullets in marketing.
Test these platforms. See if you’re building direct connections with customers or building dependance on them without appropriate control over relationships. If they don’t fit your long term goals for direct, long term relationships with customers, tread carefully.
The nature of marketing shifts with changing consumer expectations – as it should. But these fundamentals are just as relevant in 2024 as they were in 1924. Build long term customer relationships, make opportunities to stand out from the crowd, and tread carefully when it comes to magic bullets. Keep these in mind as you launch your first or 50th campaign in 2024, and you’ll be on the right path to making a thriving business.
If you want some more help from experts, we’re always here in Oriental Bay to help out. You can get in touch with Tim and see what we can support with.