Your New Year Digital Marketing Round-Up | h2o | Creative Communications Ltd.
With all of the celebrating over the Christmas period, you’d be forgiven for missing some digital marketing news. Fear not, here is a collection of interesting snippets that may have slipped your nets last month.
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Your New Year Digital Marketing Round-Up

Your New Year Digital Marketing Round-Up

Happy New Year from the h2o team. We hope you had a brilliant Christmas and haven’t made any resolutions you’ve not been able to keep. We’re all still waiting for our gyms to return to normal after the January rush.

With all of the celebrating, parties, festive goodwill and general overindulgence that took place last month, you’d be forgiven for missing some digital marketing news. Never fear though, here are a collection of interesting snippets that may have slipped your nets last month. Enjoy.

Consumers value data security

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect on 25th May this year. This is set to be far-reaching, and potentially very expensive for businesses who fall foul of its regulations.

However, from a marketing perspective, the PR and brand damage that a data breach has is almost equally catastrophic. In a recent survey by data company Gemalto, 70% of participants responded that they would stop using a business following a data breach. 69% reported that they don’t believe that companies are taking data security seriously. This demonstrates that data security is a key consideration for consumers.

It could be hubristic but potentially effective for a business to advertise their data security as a marketing strategy. It’s obviously important for consumers, however, it could also be seen as a challenge for hackers. We’ll leave it up to you.

Google’s AI has designed an AI ‘child’, and it’s better than anything we could do

This sounds like the sentence that is the start of a post-apocalyptic novel. However, the reality isn’t that dramatic (yet). Don’t be alarmed, there are no robot toddlers wandering around Google HQ or anything like that.

Google’s AI has taken machine learning and automated the set-up so that the original AI monitors the other AI’s algorithm when it performs its assigned task and makes tweaks and improvements. In this case, Google’s AI was recognising images. The AI protege significantly outperformed any systems designed by puny human underlings, as we’ll be known in the future.

This has exciting repercussions for technological innovations, as AI could potentially identify and solve problems that human designers haven’t even seen on the horizon yet. In the short-term, AI that keeps cars in their lanes, or even drives the vehicles themselves could become more sophisticated, which is an exciting prospect.

Let me be the first to welcome our new robotic overlords.

Half of young Britons purchased something directly due to influencer marketing

Influencer marketing was one of the big trends last year. It’s perfect for platforms like Instagram where people can propel themselves to stardom on the back of their images and then monetise this fame with corporate sponsors.

For brands, this low-key endorsement is seen as more authentic and genuine than a brand-centric ad. More regulations have come in recently, meaning that influencers must declare a paid post. However, this doesn’t seem to have impacted on the efficacy of influencer marketing. Research by Affilinet found that out of the 2,293 interviewees aged between 18–30, 51% said they had purchased a product promoted by one of their favourite influencers.

Clothes came out on top of the list of products purchased. 44% of participants reported that they had purchased something promoted or worn by one of their favourite influencers. Other notable products that were influencer-inspired purchases included make-up and beauty products (36%), computer games (21%) and home furnishings (16%).

This is valuable research for marketers who are considering incorporating an influencer-centric strategy in 2018. Watch out though, when engaging with an influencer, their reputation is linked to your brand for both positive and negative news and events. Just ask PewDiePie and Logan Paul who both made some fairly poor choices with their content recently. We bet their sponsors were delighted.

Facebook ads can now link to Whatsapp

An interesting social media development that may have slipped under your festive radar is the increased monetisation of Whatsapp. Facebook has introduced a ‘contact us via Whatsapp’ button to sponsored organic Facebook posts. This will move the conversation to a company Whatsapp account and moves Whatsapp further into the Facebook family. We’re predicting that it will begin to appear in Instagram ads in the near future too.

This is Facebook’s attempt to claw back some of the $19bn it spend acquiring the messaging service and sits alongside company Facebook Messenger buttons that were introduced in 2016.

It’s likely that these corporate Whatsapp accounts will soon be managed by chatbots for at least the initial conversation that determines the nature of that conversation. ‘Expect landing bots’ to replace landing pages in the near future.

Brands can sponsor animated filters

Those of you fond of a selfie has probably noticed that Snapchat has unveiled animated filters that move across the screen when users move their camera. This feature has been rolled out to brands who can now create their own filters.

Dunkin’ Donuts is one of the first brands to use the feature, promoting their dark roast coffee on the winter solstice. Their filter celebrated the shortest day of the year by darkening the photo as the day progressed which was a nice creative touch.

As we all know, what Snapchat does, Facebook will surely copy. We can, therefore, expect to see this feature rolling out across Facebook tools in the near future.

That will do you for this month. We hope you have a great January and that your New Year’s resolutions last until the next round-up in February.

Megan Tyce