2018 Business Trends

2018 Business Trends
2018 Business Trends
2018 Business Trends

2018 Business Trends

It’s a good time to reflect on business trends likely to impact 2018 and what you can do to capitalize on them. We’ve seen the continued rise of big data—which is a particular focus of online MBA programs. We’ve also seen an increase in consumer-created content, such as video, in the marketing arena. And, there’s a new trend that Google and marketing pros dubbed micro-moments. Business leaders, marketers, and entrepreneurs who jump on these trends now can expect a return on their investments in 2018.

Micro-Moments

What is a micro-moment? How many times a day do you reach for your device for a quick “I want to know something right now” moment? You want to know movie times, where the closest cup of coffee is or how your favorite team is faring. These are called micro-moments. According to Google, 96% of consumers are reaching for their smartphones as soon as they think up an inquiry. Marketers are capitalizing on these moments by delivering the information customers want with the bonus of a complete shopping experience.

To maximize these micro-moments, brands need to have the mobile infrastructure in place to deliver the information consumers want—fast. Good marketers are taking it further. For example, Dunkin Donuts positions itself on Google to pop up as number one when a consumer searches for “coffee near me.” One click, and the consumer has a map of nearby Dunkin Donuts locations, complete with travel times, wait times, and on-the-go mobile ordering options.

Delivering the information and a quality customer service experience can build trust and long-lasting relationships.

Consumer-Created Content

According to Fast Company, marketers are relying on consumers to create and share their content. This means promoting a strong brand identity and then creating campaigns where product users create their own videos, reviews, and content. USA Network is capitalizing on this trend with its campaign for “Psych the Movie” airing in December 2017. The show has a cult following that includes finding the pineapple hidden in every episode. The interactive marketing campaign asks fans of the show to create videos of themselves tossing a pineapple. It gives clear instructions for how to shoot the video, how to toss the pineapple, and how to upload it to USA’s website and social media with the hashtag #passthepineapple. More than 78 thousand people have viewed the campaign, and thousands of those fans have created and posted their own pass the pineapple videos.

Taco Bell also is taking full advantage of this trend. Chief Marketing Director Chris Brandt, says, “At Taco Bell, we look at three approaches to content: Create, Co-Create, and Curate. Create is our own content, co-create is content created in partnership with consumers, and curate is taking the user-generated content we like and showing it to more people. The most important ingredient in all of this is authenticity. We are lucky we have passionate fans that do wonderful things like create dresses out of sauce packets–now that is true passion!”

Data Analytics

The term “big data” is becoming cliché. But, that doesn’t denigrate its importance as a business trend. Social media’s easy to track insights make analyzing data simple. With one click businesses can identify their best marketing plays. Social media also provides targeted campaigns directly to their demographic.

Understanding and using big data is the important part. For businesses, data can pinpoint the key moments in a buyer’s decision process. Data can show how many times a consumer interacts with product information before a purchase and which information they used. This information tells businesses how to cut lead time between first exposure and purchase and how to cultivate long-lasting relationships with repeat customers.

Another key to all this data and social media-driven customer-created content is pulling it all together. Matt Seeley, the Global President of Experian Cross-Channel Marketing explains.

“Look for more brands and organizations to centralize their disparate data sets. With customers engaging with brands across various channels, many organizations have data sets that don’t always speak to each other. For example, point-of-sale systems, CRM systems and loyalty programs all capture unique data points about customers, but often live in separate databases or systems. By breaking down these silos and encouraging collaboration, marketers can access a more singular view of customers. And more informed marketers can create a seamless experience for those customers across all devices and channels.”

Online Learning 2017 & Online MBA

How can you capitalize on these trends? An MBA from Kettering University Online gives you the skills you need to understand big data and the global business environment. Thanks to Kettering’s strategic partnerships, students work with companies, faculty, and leaders on projects they can implement that very day into their own work. MBA students actively engage in putting these trends into practice with courses like International Business, Financial Management, Marketing Management, and Innovation & New Ventures.

The data is in, and getting an online MBA is good for your bottom line.

According to The Financial Times, MBA alumni who started their degree past age 31 had a pay increase of $56K—that’s a 70% salary increase.

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