Digital Marketing Workshop Round-up: Debugging digital trends 2019

Another year, another round of digital marketing workshops to look forward to! For anyone not in the loop already, every month, Bernie host an interactive workshop in Cardiff to help businesses (both local and from further afield) learn more about all things digital marketing. Just some of the things we’ve already shared our expertise about include PPC, SEO, tracking and branding.

Our workshops provide a truly unique experience, with one of Bernie’s experts sitting down with a group of businesses to offer tailored advice. We also give every attendee the chance to win free Bernie time through a fun quiz! This time can be used in any way you like, whether that be by writing an engaging and shareable piece of content for your blog, or helping you to spruce up your existing paid ads.

For 2019, the workshops have been rebranded to Elevate Cardiff, and although we can’t say too much yet, we’re going to be mixing things up and making them more exciting than ever. For our first session of the year, we decided to examine some of the top digital trends for 2019, letting you know whether you should be jumping on the hype of them just yet.
If you missed the workshop, here are just some of the things we covered…

Voice Search

– Voice search is conducted through devices such as smartphones and smart speakers, with the most popular and well-known examples of voice assistants including the Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, Google Assistant (used by Android devices) and Microsoft Cortana.
– One way you can identify voice searches is by looking at the terms used – voice searches tend to be longer or full sentences, and they sometimes end with ‘please and ‘thank you’.
Although we think it will be a few years before marketers need to worry about optimising PPC and SEO for voice search, you should ensure your tracking is up-to-date to see if it’s being used by people searching for your products or services.

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) can be most easily described as machines imitating humans. Through a process called ‘machine learning’, computer systems ‘learn’ how to recognise objects, voices and faces, and simulate human responses such as verbal and written speech.

Many people confuse chatbots with AI, but although they benefit from it, they’re not actually AI systems. They learn how to recognise keywords, but pull their responses from a database.
To prepare for artificial intelligence, your business should define your audiences and segment them, as well as collect more data points – you need another data to feed AI.

Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality (AR) is the process of virtual objects being superimposed into our view of the world through devices such as smartphones, and VR glasses and headsets.
AR became popular in gaming, though it became clear that it could also be applied to everyday life. It can be used to help consumers and businesses as they can use AR see a 360 view of an item before they buy it, check that a piece of furniture fits into a space, and experience a place or destination without needing to physically visit it.
Unfortunately, augmented reality is expensive to utilise, and it might be limited due to us still have to wear glasses or look at virtual objects through glasses and phones. Currently, we need to ask ourselves how practical this technology is for everyday use.

Video Content

Video is becoming increasingly popular – a Facebook Executive predicts that the platform will be all video in the next 5 years. Currently, 18% of businesses also use videos on their websites.
Many smaller businesses want to start making videos, but they feel as though they don’t have the resources to produce quality content (such as time, money and skills). However, some tips you can take into consideration are crouching down and walking slowly to zoom into a subject and using editing apps such as iMovie (for iOS devices) and Power Director (for Android).
Buying accessories to enhance your videos doesn’t have to be expensive – you can buy special packs that include microphones, lightboxes and tripods for around £150-£200.

Social Media

Utilising social media is still as important as ever, but we need to rethink how we’re using it in 2019 and beyond. This is because it used to be a lot easier for businesses to reach their desired audience through organic (unpaid) posts.
Many businesses are concerned about the number of followers they have (what we call ‘vanity metrics’) – but this isn’t important if they’re not completing the desired actions. For example, you could have 1,000 followers and 0 engagement on your posts, which won’t have any effect on increasing your sales or reaching your other goals.
Make sure you take advantage of each platform’s ad targeting options, and that you’re ready to invest more money into social media.

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