Santa is not the only one who has a naughty and nice list! Here at SEMGeeks, we have been keeping tabs on the “nice” trends we plan to continue in 2018 and the “naughty” ones we plan to ditch. With an ever-evolving industry, marketers must keep up with the trends – both good and bad.

Below is our 2017 Naughty and Nice List of digital marketing.

The Nice List

2017 was a big year for digital marketing thanks to the rise of content marketing, big data, internet of things, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. Let’s explore the trends that should continue in 2018.

  • Journey mapping. As the customer journey becomes more personalized, marketers will use a journey map to determine which touchpoints will benefit from improved communications and experiences.

  • Machine learning. AI and machine learning can seem intimidating, but you’ll get more comfortable with them in the next year. For example, machine learning automates targeting to create more personalized interactions.

  • Video and live streaming. Video isn’t a new trend, but it’s one that continues to grow. YouTube is the biggest search engine, even bigger than Google! Live streaming content is extremely popular on social media. Live, real-time content will help your brand stand out.

  • Segmenting audiences. Consumers and businesses will continue to benefit from highly personalized interactions. Continue creating content for your different audiences using tools like Personas and Content mapping.

The Naughty List

Some trends are worth keeping, but others are not. Let’s take a peek at the digital marketing habits you should drop in 2018.

  • Ignoring security. It’s important to protect yourself and others. Prevention is the best way to fight cybercrime. By the end of 2017, Google will flag your website as unsafe if you don’t have an SSL certificate.

  • Doing everything alone. You can’t manage all of your digital marketing needs on your own. Rather than hiring dedicated employees that need training and benefits, consider working with an agency. For one rate, you get an entire team of experts who will take your strategy to the next level.

We like the direction that 2018 is going as of right now. The biggest thing to pay attention to is developing highly personalized content that speaks to each customer. This may have been difficult to do before, but with the help of AI and machine learning, it is now possible.