With the end of 2017 rapidly approaching, it’s time to sharpen the pencil and begin to refine your marketing strategies for the new year. In a realm of marketing where cookie-cutter messaging and push marketing tactics can often get lost in a corporate echo chamber, many new digital opportunities provide a plethora of new ways to nurture new connections with your prospects. This year brought us many digital marketing trends. We are likely to see these expand in 2018, particularly for B2B marketers.

The Continued Rise of Paid Social Dollar

This is a digital marketing trend we have seen skyrocket a for years now and 2018 will be no exception. Just two years ago in 2015, social ad spending was estimated at $23.68 Billion worldwide. In the past year alone, that spend has nearly doubled with an estimated $41 Billion generated in social network ad revenue worldwide. Social networks increasingly rely on algorithms to filter their day-to-day content. A properly targeted paid strategy has become nothing short of essential for social media marketing success.

What was once dismissed as simply a hub for hungry recruiters and job applicants alike, LinkedIn has fleshed itself into quite the social advertising behemoth for B2B marketers. Targeting for ads on this network are bar none for reaching specific subsectors of your potential customers in a wide variety of industries and job capacities. In 2018, we also expect to see wider use of social lead generation forms as the feature was recently integrated into LinkedIn’s popular InMail advertising platform.

Video Killed the Content Star

If you’ve so much as logged on to an Internet browser in 2017, you’ve undoubtedly come across branded video content. Videos have taken priority as the next generation of easy-to-digest, attention-grabbing rich media. From resource downloads, to landing page content, to social media advertising, the moving picture is now king.  In fact, using video content on landing pages can increase conversions by a staggering 82%.

Expect to see this continue in a big way in 2018. With LinkedIn finally diving into video ad units, the social juggernaut has opened B2B marketers to a new world of content creation possibilities.  Connecting with your potential customers and showcasing your knowledge can now have a face and voice easier than before.

On the algorithm-driven Facebook, video content has already been prioritized for both social ads and day-to-day content. However, with the prioritization of this rich content, we are likely to see an increase in quality regulations. Even in recent months since Facebook prioritized video content in its newsfeed algorithm, lower-quality content pages are seeking to game the system. One way is by converting static images into video files for increased distribution.

Live from Your Seminar, it’s Saturday Night!

Despite whether your CEO has a pithy cold opener to rival Jimmy Fallon’s SNL days, you too can now be a broadcast star. Taking video one step further, live streaming has quickly given any business with a smartphone a chance to broadcast their brand to the world.

Facebook Live, Twitter, Twitch, and YouTube all provide opportunities to broadcast any happening or conversation you chose and turn it into a valuable piece of content marketing. One in five videos shared on Facebook alone takes place in the live streaming format. Live streaming a seminar, or even a random thought from your desk, can further your brand impact. It positions you as a thought leader in a more personalized and engaging format than before. The best part? You can save the videos and repurpose them as a piece of content marketing afterwards.

A Continued Demand for Thought Leaders

There will always be a place for well-scribed content, despite the rise of video and other rich media content. Even a year after LinkedIn launched Pulse in 2014 over 1 Million users were using the platform to get their own content out to their networks. In 2018 we should expect to see continued demand for thought leaders creating their own content on the network.

Tap into your business leaders’ breadth of experience to pen thoughtful and insightful pieces for your networks to read. Continually showcase your expertise to a network that has already chosen to connect with you. This way, you can provide a more personalized channel for prospects to engage your business.

To learn more about how to leverage up-and-coming digital marketing strategies for your B2B marketing, chat with us at [email protected].