Career boosting resolutions for 2019

Chris Daly

THIS already looks set to be an interesting year. I asked marketers across the industry to look back over the past year and their thoughts on the what to should look out for in 2019.

1 Cut through creative - Cutting through the noise has long been a challenge for marketers, and with estimations that the average person sees thousands of adverts every day, making an impact is no small task.

For Mark Curtis, CCO and co-founder of Fjord, this means a renewed focus on design. Curtis warned that creative talent is often overlooked: “We’ve seen a massive acceleration in demand for design.”

When a person’s first experience of a brand is likely to be their website or app, he argues, design is key.

However, it goes beyond design. In 2018, brands have truly recognised that all customer-facing communications are an opportunity for engagement, and UX writers are transforming these traditionally mundane messages into real customer experiences.

2 The omnichannel imperative - This year, omnichannel marketing will be of increasing importance as marketers look to build fully integrated customer experiences, and nurture better relationships.

The rise of social e-commerce has no doubt facilitated this – with Instagram becoming a visual store front for influencers to promote to their audience, and newly introduced product stickers reaching over 400 million Instagram story viewers every day.

However, identifying your channels is only half the battle. Futurist Tom Cheesewright predicts that in 2019: “A growing category of marketers will be focused on techniques for engaging and gaming the new digital intermediaries.”

Indeed, he cites these intermediaries as often the barrier to true engagement: “Increasingly, the gatekeepers to consumer attention is algorithms, and this is no longer limited just to search engines.”

If this is the case, it is concerning that the rise of voice search means algorithms are set to play an even more important role in years to come.

3 Increased regulation - An increased regulatory landscape sent many marketers into a tailspin in 2018 – and it is set to continue. Whilst the introduction of GDPR made getting data right a legal imperative, CIM research found that four in 10 consumers have received unsolicited communications from businesses in the six months since the legislation came into force. This is compared with 48 per cent at the time GDPR took effect.

In addition, 2018 saw the introduction of the Sugar Tax and a ban on harmful gender stereotypes in advertising, which is due to come into force in 2019.

This, coupled with the potential for more stringent legislation around influencer marketing next year, will no doubt force some marketers to rethink their approach.

Guy Parker, chief executive of the ASA summed it up well saying: “Effective regulation is good for companies because it helps provide a level playing field for everyone. By ensuring higher standards, effective regulation gives people more confidence in the claims companies are making.”

:: Chris Daly is chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM)

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