2016 Marketing Questions

With the end of January near, you and your organization are likely already working on new goals for 2016. But have you considered how your organization’s Marketing Strategy has an impact on goals business-wide?

There are five big questions executives and marketers are asking this year that could have a surprising outcome on their bottom-line:

1. How will the declining Canadian dollar impact my business?

The answer depends on your industry and your resulting communication strategy. Consumers will alter purchasing decisions and you’ll see certain shifts. Research from The Harvard Business Review shows that during a downturn, all but the ‘Live for Today’ group (in the Consumer Segments’ Changing Behaviour chart) will alter their buying behaviour.

We like to say change is good and there is always a positive way to approach this economic circumstance.

If you consider the car rental market for example, you might assume that we’ll see a decline in renters as national residents travel less. However, we already see Canadians planning ‘staycations’, remaining closer to home and perhaps renting cars to use domestically instead. We also see tourists from overseas planning trips to Canada while the dollar is low. Projecting ahead and planning to reach a new or more prevalent segment during an economic or industry shift will help improve results for your organization.

During the 2008 economic recession some of the most successful organizations audited their strategies and instead of cutting marketing spending (as all costs were being cut), they tailored their approach for various groups in the Consumer Segments’ Changing Behaviour chart, and emphasized fewer product lines.

2. Will 2016 be the year of video marketing?

Beyond the compelling reason that Google’s search algorithm favours multimedia, there are more emerging reasons to focus on video in 2016. With social media sites giving more real estate to videos and with 2015 studies showing that videos result in higher click-through-rates, you should be thinking about video in 2016 if you haven’t in the past.

2016 will be a year with more video marketing than ever before.

3. How are my key channels changing?

Not only are digital channels focusing on video content, we have recently seen another major announcement. Twitter intends to increase the length of a Tweet from 140 characters to over 10,000 characters as early as March. If you regularly use Direct Messages on Twitter to handle consumer inquiries, your customer service approach will need to shift.  A significantly higher character count will require more fulsome responses from your account.

Digital channels are always updating and shifting, it’s important to stay up-to-date on news, blogs and webinars to maximize the channels you use.

4. What are the impacts of emerging technologies?

Tech-savvy Millennials are quickly becoming Canada’s largest and most influential group of consumers. Forget cell phones – we’re talking about how they will use wearables, wireless-internet-enabled-cars, drones, and robots, to name a few examples. It’s important to think about how these emerging technologies will affect your business or disrupt your industry.

If you’re not thinking ahead, you’re behind. Don’t forget: Netflix dissolved the movie rental market and Kindle forever changed how we consume the written word.

5. How do I take my marketing to the next level?

Whether 2016 is a year of major shifts or smaller tweaks, you’ll want to activate and engage your key market segments. Understanding the psychology and motivation of your consumers, in order to develop the most effective messaging for the appropriate channels, is key to a successful marketing approach.

Whether you work with a marketing partner or have an in-house marketing department, take your marketing to the next level by measuring your results and pivoting your efforts in 2016.

Are there other big questions you’re exploring? Reach out – we’ll help you get a jump-start on 2016 and make sure you’ve considered all the right questions when developing your marketing strategy.