Generative AI, economic downturn, and the emergence of Threads as a social platform—2023 is full of game-changing marketing trends. Trends that completely shift how entrepreneurs and marketers approach online marketing.
In this article, we cover 10 digital marketing tips to help you compete in this new landscape. These strategies will shape the future of forward-thinking businesses and help you create strong marketing campaigns.
Social customer service is when brands use social media platforms to address and resolve customer queries, concerns, or feedback in real time. It turns your social channels into a help desk, where you chat with customers and can resolve issues faster.
Here’s the truth: A whopping 60% of customers will buy from a brand based on the level of service they expect.
Want to outshine the competition?
Look at how the global giant Bestseller does it: they’ve integrated conversational AI into their social strategy on Facebook Messenger.
Conversational AI allows machines to mimic human text or voice interactions. This solution allows the AI to receive and resolve queries anytime.
Image Source: heyday
HeyDay, a conversational AI chatbot, helps Bestseller deliver 24/7 customer service on their e-commerce site and Facebook Messenger channels. Through automation, they’ve managed to:
- Centralize all customer service chats in one place.
- Equip customers with automated FAQ and product search tools to find what they need.
- Free up their human staff to tackle more complex issues, leaving the straightforward queries (like order tracking) to AI.
By December 2020, 70% of Bestseller’s customers gave the AI chatbot an “excellent” rating. A month later, that score jumped to 76%.
Plus, on average, their bot replied to customers in one minute and 31 seconds. Considering the average response time is 12 hours, that’s lightning speed.
Of course, conversational AI is just the start. There are other things you can do to improve the customer experience:
- Make empathy training mandatory: Have your social marketing team spend two to three months in customer service. This ensures more coherent and customer-centric communication while understanding needs and queries.
- Harmonize online and offline customer experiences: Create a seamless and consistent experience across all touchpoints. If a customer inquires about a product’s availability online, they should have the ability to pick it up in-store without any hassle.
- Use chatbots to drive in-store traffic: Include built-in store locator features to help customers find the nearest store and schedule an appointment easily.
2. Maximize ROI by Repurposing Content
Content repurposing involves taking existing content and adapting it for a different format or platform. For example, you could repurpose a high-traffic blog post into a podcast episode or vice versa.
Our report shows that 42% of marketers believe updating and repurposing existing content leads to success in content marketing. And why not?
Content repurposing ensures you’re getting the most out of your assets. Repurposing content across various mediums saves time. It also gives your content a better chance of resonating with a broader audience segment.
Buffer detailed its content repurposing strategy in this blog.
For example, the team used this underperforming TikTok to repurpose into other content opportunities.
Buffer converted the video into text to share on LinkedIn, which turned into one of their top LinkedIn posts of the month (for both impressions and engagement rate).
The video ended up doing better on Reels (3k views) compared to TikTok and YouTube Shorts (300 views).
If you’ve already done the work, you need to maximize its potential. You never know where the message might take off.
Follow these internet marketing tips:
- Identify top performers: Before repurposing, analyze which content pieces are already doing well. These top-performing assets are best for repurposing since you know they resonate with your audience.
- Mix and match formats: Think beyond the direct conversion of content. You can turn a data-heavy blog post into an infographic, a series of blog posts into an ebook, or an interview into a Q&A article.
- Update old content: Some topics remain evergreen but need a refresh. Update outdated stats, add new insights, and give it a fresh look.
- Segment and serialize: If you have long-form content like webinars or extensive guides, break it down into smaller chunks. Like a series of blog posts, short videos, or social media snippets.
- Optimize for each platform: For instance, a YouTube video might need to be shorter and snappier for TikTok. Always tweak your repurposed content to suit the platform’s best practices.
An ongoing repurposing strategy amplifies your reach across channels and sets a content flywheel in motion.
3. Use Employee Advocacy for Authentic Engagement and Social Selling
Employee advocacy is when a company’s workforce promotes and supports the brand through personal social media accounts or word of mouth. It turns employees into brand ambassadors and uses their networks to demonstrate the company’s know-how.
What makes this so important?
First, it’s organic and authentic. A LinkedIn study found that while only 3% of employees share content about their firm, such shares boost the company’s engagement by 30%.
Plus, this type of sharing builds positive brand awareness.
An official employee advocacy initiative can also be a game-changer for sales. The same LinkedIn study found that 64% of advocates within structured programs say it helps reel in and cultivate new business.
For example, freelance writer Kiran Shahid posted about B2B SaaS agency Grizzle’s editorial tips.
This social media post says a lot about Grizzle. It showcases how high its editorial standards are and emphasizes the positive relationship between its writers and editors.
Plus, an inside look at the company’s operations fosters trust and transparency. It gives potential customers or employees a sneak peek at the company’s culture and work ethic.
Here are some marketing tips and tricks to encourage employee advocacy:
- Incentivize participation: Offer tangible rewards or recognition for employee efforts. Set up a points system, gift cards, or special shout-outs for those who promote the brand.
- Provide training and resources: Offer workshops, webinars, or resource kits with successful post examples, templates, and content ideas that equip employees with what they need.
- Make it authentic: Don’t force it—ensure what employees share aligns with their brand and voice. It makes endorsements genuine and more relatable to their followers.
- Set marketing goals and KPIs: Define and measure KPIs to gauge the program’s success and areas of improvement.
4. Shift the Focus from Influencers to Content Creators
Influencers vs. content creators—what’s the difference?
The main distinction is in celebrity status. Influencers build a brand around their appeal or lifestyle. Content creators specialize in specific niches and create detailed, valuable content around those topics.
Creators build a genuine connection with their audiences by providing in-depth insights, how-to guides, and tutorials. This richness, combined with a niche focus, means businesses can achieve a deeper, more authentic engagement.
For example, Weight Watchers partnered with content creator Karim, who posts about healthy recipes and focuses on how diet food doesn’t need to be bland.
This post promotes Jennifer’s Kitchen’s Salt to elevate the flavor profile of a simple dish without adding unnecessary calories.
Karim integrates the products seamlessly into content rather than forcing the promotion.
The key for any brand is to find the right content creators.
How do you do this? Discovery platform Influencer Analytics can help.
It helps brands find relevant content creators based on their requirements.
Connect with influencers across multiple platforms. You get granular data like subscribers, views, likes, when their last post was, and even price.
Need to narrow it down? Use the filters to sort by country, account quality, language, category, and engagement rate.
The price filter is especially useful for small businesses that want to create an influencer marketing strategy on a budget.
Whether you’re searching for a tech enthusiast on YouTube or a sustainable living advocate on Instagram, Influencer Analytics’ advanced filters make the hunt straightforward.
Further reading: Influencer Marketing: What Is It and How to Build a Solid Strategy
5. Create Edutainment Content
Edutainment is a blend of “education” and “entertainment” where content creators fuse learning with fun to make informative content more engaging.
It works because it makes the learning process enjoyable and memorable for the audience.
Think about it: when was the last time you genuinely laughed or were entertained while learning something new?
The combination of emotion and information sticks in your mind. It doesn’t just ensure retention. It also creates a positive association with the topic.
Steve Ho (@steveioe), for example, shares comedic yet brutally honest ER skits online.
His “Tips from the ER” content blends humor with health advice. Through his videos, he offers bite-sized lessons that entertain and inform.
Ho’s satire breaks the stereotype that medical information must be dry and tedious. He pairs health insights with comedy to reach a broader audience. This approach makes his audience more receptive to advice they might otherwise gloss over.
Here are some tips for creating educational content:
- Pinpoint your target customers’ interests and pain points. Design content that addresses them and wraps the information in a captivating narrative or engaging format.
- Use humor, storytelling, or interactive elements to enhance engagement. Plus, visual aids like graphics, animation, or props simplify complex ideas.
- Concise formats force creators to be punchy and impactful. Use short-form videos for effective edutainment.
6. Justify Your Content Marketing Spend
Demonstrate the tangible value and return on investment (ROI) of your content marketing efforts. Showcasing the ROI of content marketing secures C-suite buy-in and ensures sustained investment in your strategies.
Sharing success gets you the financial support you need. This kind of internal promotion is especially important considering 71% of CMOs feel their budgets for 2023 aren’t enough to fully execute their strategies.
Executives tighten budgets and scrutinize expenses, especially during economic downturns. Marketing professionals need to show the real worth of their initiatives.
Here’s what you can do to help that happen:
- Narrow down the metrics that line up with your brand journey
- Create a report to show decision-makers your initiative’s success and trajectory
Let’s look at an example.
Suppose you’re a lifestyle brand. You want to highlight increased traffic to your website due to your pivot to focusing on organic search.
You can use the Semrush Position Tracking tool to track your website’s ranking positions. You can automate reports on your campaign’s success.
In your next meeting with execs, you justify your budget by demonstrating how your content marketing efforts translate into ranking changes (appearing higher in search results).
In your presentation, you also include data on how your efforts have contributed to increased traffic to target pages.
Here are tips for justifying marketing budget and getting buy-in:
- Focus on metrics that demonstrate your campaign’s success.
- Automate your reports so you have the data to hand.
- Create a presentation with data that clearly explain your performance.
7. Create Valuable, Original Content
Valuable and original content establishes your brand as an authoritative voice and ensures repeat visits from readers.
Original content includes research reports, thought leadership articles, in-depth case studies, and personalized tutorials. These content assets offer readers deeper insights and actionable takeaways.
For example, CXL’s blog is full of detailed guides, industry analyses, and expert interviews. The content dives into conversion optimization, digital marketing, and user experience.
The posts often include real-world examples backed by data and research. Like this one:
This combination ensures readers walk away with theoretical knowledge and practical strategies they can apply immediately.
Here are some questions to ask yourself before publishing content to ensure it’s valuable and original:
- Does your content reflect and uphold the core values of your brand?
- Is the tone of your content consistent? Does it match your brand’s identity and the expectations of your audience?
- Does your content tackle challenges and answer questions relevant to your target market?
- Are you sharing firsthand expertise and genuine knowledge or echoing what’s already out there?
- Does your content center on a clear topic? Does your site or channel have a well-defined purpose that matches your audience’s interests?
- Does your content educate or inform your readers?
- Will your readers feel enriched, informed, and satisfied after consuming your content?
Monitor this checklist to ensure every piece you publish aligns with your brand’s vision while meeting the needs and expectations of your audience.
8. Build an Email List
An email list is a collection of individual email addresses brands can communicate with directly instead of using third-party platforms.
An email list is an owned asset. Why is this distinction important? Third-party platforms are unpredictable. Owned assets safeguard brands from unexpected changes in social media landscapes.
In May 2023, 60% of U.S. Twitter (now X) users took a break from the platform after Elon Musk’s takeover.
Two months later, rival platform Threads amassed 70 million users in two days.
These drastic shifts show the volatility of relying solely on third parties. You might invest years establishing your presence on a platform only to find your marketing strategies upended overnight.
Owned lists help you keep a direct line to your audience. Let’s consider email marketing testing company Litmus as an example.
How do they build their list?
Litmus sends a weekly newsletter that’s full of actionable tips.
The emails are relevant to their target audience, making it easy to attract new customers and retain current subscribers.
The company also uses lead magnets. These are enticing offers or resources like ebooks or templates that brands provide in exchange for a person’s email address.
This email template is a lead magnet.
Why does this work well?
Because it offers immediate value to a target audience. It addresses their specific needs or interests, which motivates people to share their contact details willingly.
Research reports are also a great way to draw subscribers since they’re packed with the latest data. Like this one:
With current research, Litmus doesn’t offer only value. It also positions itself as a thought leader and authority in the industry.
A diverse approach helps Litmus build a healthy email list to keep its audience in the loop and deliver the latest product offerings organically.
9. Use AI to Support Your Processes
Turn to AI tools to expedite tasks, allowing for quicker decision-making and streamlined operations.
Artificial intelligence (AI) went mainstream in 2023. AI tools use machine learning algorithms to assist businesses in their marketing efforts.
The average marketer spends almost a third of their time completing repetitive tasks.
AI marketing tools speed up these routine tasks. They can help you analyze data, create content, automate campaigns, and optimize strategies.
Here are some AI tools you need to check out:
Creative Automation Tools
These tools automate the design process for ads, banners, and promotional materials to ensure consistency while saving time.
These tools use AI algorithms to generate, enhance, or optimize written content for different platforms and audiences.
Social Media Tools
These AI-powered tools support social media management tasks, including content scheduling, performance tracking, and ad optimization.
Example: Celtra provides creative automation for social and digital advertising, optimizing visuals and placements across different platforms.
Of course, AI’s output is only as good as the human overseeing its implementation.
Tracey Wallace, the Director of Content at Klaviyo, suggested revamping the content production process during her Office Hours session with Omniscient’s Alex Birkett.
Here’s what this AI-enabled process looks like:
Image source: YouTube
Notice how AI builds on what humans already contributed.
AI tools can streamline your marketing processes. Although, they still need human guidance to set goals, define strategies, and ensure ethical and responsible use.
Further reading: Best AI Tools for Digital Marketers in 2023
10. Build Authority Through Podcasts
Create a podcast that discusses industry trends, expert insights, and real-world case studies to establish your brand as a go-to resource in your field.
Why? Podcasts are popular.
In a recent study, 61% of people considered podcast listening part of their daily routine.
For example: Superpath is a community for B2B content marketers. Their podcast “Content, Briefly” helps content marketers interested in strategy and content tips, like structure and workflows.
On each episode, host Jimmy Daly interviews experts who share their stories.
The podcast positions Superpath as an authority. It also builds deep connections with its audience.
Plus, The Juice’s report, which covers B2B podcast listening, highlights that decision-makers love podcasts. Of the decision-makers surveyed, managers (26%), directors (18%), and owners (16%) consumed podcasts the most.
Via podcasting, Superpath attracts C-suite executives, industry influencers, and key decision-makers to its brand. It opens the door to collaborations, partnerships, and business opportunities.
Follow this marketing advice to get started with podcasts:
- Build rapport with your guests: Spend time getting to know your interviewee. A real connection creates a more relaxed and authentic conversation.
- Understand your audience’s needs: Research and gather feedback to understand what topics or questions your target audience cares about. Your podcast content should answer these questions or delve into these topics.
- Avoid over-promotion: While it’s OK to mention your brand or services occasionally, keep it light. The primary goal is to provide value, not to sell.
- Use a podcast hosting tool: These tools streamline content creation and optimize your podcast for SEO. Engage audiences across platforms with repurposed content from your podcast. A tool like the Podcast Hosting app can help.
Create a Powerful Marketing Plan with Semrush
There’s a lot of opportunity for growth this year. But there’s also a lot to focus on.
With SEO, content creation, competitor analysis, and social media marketing, it’s easy to feel swamped—especially if you’re dealing with tools that aren’t connected. Investing in multiple platforms scatters your focus and dilutes your digital marketing strategy.
Semrush is your marketing Swiss Army knife. Its suite of tools consolidates everything you need into one powerful platform.
Tracking keyword rankings, analyzing backlink profiles, or scouting for content opportunities—it’s all at your fingertips.
Try Semrush today for an effective marketing solution.