Well, traditionally, at the end of the year many big industry players (they are not the only ones) publish their forecasts and trend predictions for the upcoming year.
For us as a tracking SaaS provider, such articles are kind of tool to hear a voice of big guys with expertise and business maturity we admire. Yes, we don’t manage online campaigns by ourselves, but we staying behind those who do, and, keeping our hand on pulse, we are ready for new challenges!
We have reviewed innumerable forecasts and overviews and revealed top 5 most frequently trends that are mentioned in different sources.
Now it’s April, so big picture is beginning to become clear!
Looking forward to hear your confirmation or disproval!
#1. Influencer Marketing
Influencer Marketing – you can find it almost at top of each list. Why this is such a big deal? Influencer Marketing is kind of word-of-mouth handled by “brand ambassadors”, who has a strong influence on the particular audience segment. Mainly they are bloggers and celebrities, but also these include publishers and even companies, the last one might look like a product placement (Who remember “My tale of Whisky” by Nick Offerman?)
Comparing Influencer marketing and affiliate programs, you can figure out some slight difference in logic. The first one is focused on increasing brand awareness, using brand-focused metrics such as CPM, comments, likes for Engagement or traffic, subscribers number for Potential Reach. While Affiliate Program’s main goals are customer acquisition and revenue growth by tracking client’s respond metrics – Sales, Registration, Subscription (on a case –by-case basis conversion points can be different). Seems like this, but…
It depends on how accurate advertiser did the research and understood who are the key influencers in the specific niches. If this is done correctly – investing into selected few with the 100% matching combination between the audience segment, promo channel and influencer, will bring advertiser the highest possible ROI!
All this fuss over Influencer marketing has started few years back and no doubt this ever-growing interest is going up – only Instagram alone showed impressive numbers of $570million for 2016.
#2. Mobile is getting ahead
Mobile is coming out to the top in 2017 – this quite widespread belief based on a credible statistic of mobile-desktop users.
Guess you can say, 2016 was a crucial year in a history of user internet experience. For the first time (in October) desktop usage was beaten by Mobile and Tablet – 48.7% vs. 51.3%. So, welcome to the “mobile first” era!
At the beginning of 2017, mobile devices segment was estimated as 65% of all digital media time with desktop lagging behind at 35%. By 2018 the rate of device usage is expected to reach 80%. Estimated global mobile traffic is expected to sharply increase over the next four years from 9.9 exabytes per month in 2017 to 30.6 exabytes per month by 2020.
Considering this issue from a monetization point of view, there is also positive statistic with stable growth app revenue including in-app ads and app store sales and forecast amount $189 billion by 2020.
This statistic shows the number of available applications in the Google Play Store for almost 8 years. Overall number has reached 2.8 million apps in March 2017. AppStore shows slightly less overall numbers that GooglePlay –over 2 million by Jan 2017.
#3. Cross Device Tracking
Going deep into analysis of the effectiveness (which is understood as a greater result for less cost), the significant roles are given to identification of main streams, who practically lead a user to the final conversion – Purchase, Subscription or whatever. Indeed, in the era of multi-device users, it’s a common case when a user switches between devices during the day and eventually finish purchase from one of them.
It’s important to recognize and identify the user, and push him to complete the conversion, no matter which device he use each next time. But, how to estimate the contribution of each involved affiliate? Who actually should take credits? Providing a breakdown structure of affiliates with their credits during the campaign – this is the next step of marketing performance.
#4. Video type
Video is a new sexy!
And it’s not about picture/amination replacement – they are still working, but you can’t ignore the diversity of video formats that are becoming more and more accessible and demanded.
Video Ads spending shows strong growths for last years. Thus, according to Smaato’s report, last quarter shown tremendous growth.
Talking about traffic global trend – The study released by Cisco predicts that there will be more than 11.6 billion mobile connected devices by 2020, that exceeds the world’s projected population at that time (7.8 billion). That’s going to have a huge impact on video traffic! Mobile Video content is forecast to reach 75% of all global mobile data traffic by 2020, while currently this rate estimates around 2/3 of all traffic, in 2015 it was 55%.
#5. AR/VR – Be Virtual
Last but not least, is Virtual Reality. Does everyone remember how Pokemon Go hit the jackpot this year? It’s probably safe to assume in coming years we could see AR/VR new achievements in other segments like shopping, entertainment.
This assumption is based on the optimistic user statistic & forecast and AR/VR Revenues.
Augmented/Virtual Reality revenue forecast revised to hit $120 billion by 2020 with AR and VR shares $90billions and $30billions respectively.
Looking at the breakdown structure, Hardware segments going to be a leader in both of AR and VR.
VR largely remains an entertainment and takes its position in hardware, games, video and theme parks, with non-entertainment apps driving a meaningful minority of revenue by 2020 as the market develops. AR will be driven by hardware, commerce, data voice, video, enterprise, theme park, advertising, apps and games.
This year is definitely going to be a banner one. User numbers will swell, revenues will continue to grow, and mainstream adoption is a very real prospect.
Proofs has already started coming out – just recently on 31 Mar, HYPEREAL – a Shanghai-based VR hardware and software company, announced the launch of their first products – the Pano and Pano Pro with accompanying accessories to China’s mass market.