Messaging consumption trends for marketers

It’s that time of year when bloggers, email marketing and otherwise, start to either look back at the highlights of the year or look forward and predict the next big things. Who am I to ignore such a trend so here are my thoughts on 2012 – it’s all about message consumption people!

The clue’s in the message

No major change going on in the fact that people will continue to view a brand or businesses messaging. What marketers do need to accept is that they have many more ways in which to do so. It’s becoming much harder to predict and control where to put messages so we need to make sure we’ve covered all the bases.

Is your message mobile?

If you haven’t heard this at one of the numerous marketing conferences this year then I’ll recap for you – make sure you’re mobile.

People have iphones, androids, Blackberrys and tablets – they’re reading on the move so your messaging needs to be accessible to them. There are many ways that you can get mobile, don’t just go for an app because that’s a buzz word at the moment:

SMS is simple and good for alerts, promotions and voucher codes

Mobile sites can be just as effective as an app and will come up in mobile search (you can either have a specific site or make sure your main site is fully mobile optimised)

Emails are being read on mobiles and are very cost effective, you can now view what device your email is read on and make sure they’re optimised for mobile viewing

Mobile apps are being created left, right and centre and can be a great brand promoter

Email’s not going anywhere

We’ve read from Facebook that email is dead, we’ve seen that being said many, many times and it just doesn’t happen. Email isn’t going anywhere, in fact companies are integrating it with more of their systems and channels and getting clever with it. Marketers won’t be denied this highly cost-effective and measurable channel, what they should be doing is making their emails optimised for different devices and getting their email software talking to their CRM systems, e-commerce platforms and social channels.

Social is just another channel

Not just for the early adopters anymore, social media marketing isn’t a mysterious or magic way to spread a viral message that will make brands famous. It’s just another channel to get your messages out there and to have a conversation.

The trick to social is to take your work head off, just be yourself and stop trying to use it to sell to people. It’s not direct marketing – think of it more like trying to get people to refer your business, this can’t be forced, they interact with you, like what you say and in their time, come to you when you’re required. Also don’t think that social is great because it’s free, to use it properly you will need to pay for a platform that will help you monitor your brand interactions and to use at an enterprise level the decent ones will cost.

Technology lines are blurring

I’ve talked about different messaging consumption habits and how technology is shaping that, here’s the technology low down…

Desktops/laptops – these are still being used despite the growth of mobile devices. People don’t consume on just one device now they may use a desktop/laptop at the office or in a home office where they will be stationary for an hour or so.

Tablets – Good for consuming messaging online or viewing downloads, not just used on the go people may use in meetings to take notes or show a presentation. Likewise they may use at home whilst watching the TV.

Mobiles – These are used alongside all other devices whether at a desk, on the move, at home, on the sofa. The mobile is the quick and easy companion – not one for detail but a great sidekick.