Harikrishnan Pillai, Founder, TheSmallBigIdea and listed in Social Samosa’s #40Under40 list, shares his opinion and inputs on the topical wave of social media trends to be seen in 2019.
It’s that time of the year where the crystal balls come out and everyone becomes a fortune-teller. Some predictions are usual suspects, while some are clear strokes of genius. I am putting together a list of 5 things that I think will be critical for digital marketers- clients and agencies, alike in 2019.
a. Voice Search and Smart Speakers
28 percent of all searches are voice-based and it’s growing at about 270 percent. Platforms are making critical advances in Natural language processing, conversation interfaces, and machine learning, making their voice AI smarter. With additional focus on the AI’s ability to understand regional languages and accents, voice search will make the big leap this year. Smart speakers and its integration with home electronics and utility apps will start creating a different ecosystem with devices communicating with each other, providing a seamless digital experience. The belief that only owners of smart speakers/phones interact using voice has been shattered by staggering numbers presented by the Jio’s low-end feature phones which are priced at 1500 Rs. And as more users embrace this technology, brands & advertisers will find new avenues opening up.
If Facebook gaming’s level up program, launched in 30 countries, is any sign of things to come, then video game content creators will be the next content stars in India. From online multi-player games like PUBG and Fortnite to Rummy and Ludo king, the gaming companies have managed to get users across the country hooked to it. With over 22.2 crore active gamers in India, spending an average of 42 minutes on mobile games every day over five sessions, it’s already a marketers paradise.
c. AI-driven content experiences
It’s an old one in the list, probably making its appearance one too many times. It’s the time of reckoning for AI who has been made to look like a monster. 2019 will be the year where the application of AI in multiple facets of marketing will be simplified and put to daily, more consistent use. Brands & agencies will accelerate their focus on developing AI-based performance and content solutions.
d. Micro-moment marketing
The era of appointment viewing and daily online sessions have been long left behind by a series of fragmented interactions which occurs instantaneously. I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-do, and I-want-to-buy are moments that really matter, which in all possibilities are experienced on multiple screens. A brand has to understand the relevance of these moments in the category they belong to and develop a strategy accordingly. This will eventually push creators to be more innovative in their storytelling.
Platforms are moving from destinations of content publishing in text, image and video format to allowing users to create engaging content through rich visual experiences. The elusive yet widely discussed AR/VR has found an unlikely ally in the phone camera and social media platforms. These are allowing agencies and brands to create an immersive content experience on the mobile device and reducing the dependency of bulky AR/VR devices.