2018 lessons that will shape my 2019 in digital marketing

2018 was a year of huge professional highs for me in my digital marketing career. I moved up from Senior Digital Marketing Manager at AB… to the Head of Digital Strategy and Marketing. Lifetime career ambition ✅.

My team and I also became DADI award finalists with a campaign for a great client who dared to do something different in their sector. And although we didn’t win the award, it was hugely rewarding to be a finalist and to know the word we’d done made a big impact to a business.

But what did we learn in the digital campaigns we ran this year and the agency service we provide? Well, I’ll tell you.

Always keep an eye on quality

It has never been easier for anyone to throw up a Facebook ad or sponsor a tweet, and there’s growing competition to be the next big thing in the advertising and social media space. Quality is what sets myself and my team apart. Quality of the strategy, the creative and the implementation mean the results speak for themselves. Staying mindful of the quality of the work we provide is top of my priorities for 2019.

Video is only going to grow

Almost every campaign we proposed to a client in 2018 contained a film element. We’re frequently demonstrating just how much more engagement film can produce when it’s part of a digital marketing or integrated campaign. In 2019, our media planning will continue to include 3 or more film edits tailored for each channel, including vertical formats for stories.

Communication within the team is crucial

This seems like common sense, and it is really, but when times get busy and we’ve all got our heads down, communication within the team is more important than ever. I learned this year that as a manager, I need to pop my head up (in a metaphorical sense – otherwise I would be a meerkat) and ask questions, check in on projects and make sure everyone has everything they need to do the job. Simples.

User experience in voice search will improve

User experience in voice search is something I’ve written about a great deal recently, mainly because I think there’s a long way to go until it’s anywhere near good enough. When we humans interact with an AI using voice, we don’t adjust our expectations, we simply assume the AI will be able to perform a complex conversation just as another human would. But it’s not quite there yet. I think 2019 will see great leaps in the contextual conversation capabilities of the mainstream AIs such as Alexa and Siri.

This means we’ll need to focus more on the impact of voice interactions and how consumers will interact with brands and businesses.