Hard to believe we are already 10 days into January - I swear we were just cheering Happy New Year at midnight 10 minutes ago...

At the beginning of every year, I like reading into the marketing predictions to get an idea of what the experts are calling to be the next “big” things for the year ahead.

This year's big players

  • Chatbots, AI and Machine Learning
  • Big Data (again)
  • Voice Search and Mobile-First
  • Micro-Influencers
  • Content Marketing (not a newbie, but still predicted to be a top dog)

Can marketing experts really predict the future?

What we’ve found in years gone by is that while yes, experts’ predictions are destined to be BIG, they aren’t always realistic to the everyday business. They’re often out of reach due to the serious cost, time and resources needed to put them into action.

So while we keep hearing that last year’s big trends of IoT, AR and VR are still set to be big players in the marketing world, we can’t see them playing out for average business owner. For now, they’re still a bit too “flash”.

Mobile-first, however, is one area that is crucial for success in 2018 – for everyone. In the past, optimising for mobile was an option (a very, very smart one, but sadly ended up left on the to-do list for many). But there’s no more waiting. If your site isn’t mobile optimised, you’ll be left in the dust this year and we can call that a fact.

2018 also appears to be the year of chatbots. The areas of AI and Machine Learning truly kicked off last year, but experts are saying this trend is now going full steam ahead. To be able to follow in the footsteps of social giants like Facebook there are now many great free chatbots available, making it a realistic strategy for the everyday business owner.

What are your marketing predictions?

So, you may recall that here at PUNCH we’ve started up a little New year’s tradition of running our annual Marketing Predictions Survey, to test the year's marketing predictions against what business and marketing professionals are REALLY focusing on.

Yes, we are talking to YOU! We want to hear what you think about the year’s predicted marketing trends and whether or not you will be jumping on those bandwagons.

What's your strategy?

What digital marketing strategies do you plan to invest your hard earned time and dollars into this year? What trends do you think are going to take off? And what will you be steering completely clear of?

We’d love to hear!

Don’t worry - this is completely anonymous, and we’ll be sharing our results for everyone to check out in the next few months!

Our survey closes off on January 31st so head here to find it, and let your voice be heard.

Take 30 seconds to complete our survey now!