Analyzing what happened during 2010 in the digital communication industry, we have been able to detect 5 clear trends that will play an important role in the marketing strategies adopted by companies during this year 2011.

Twitter – Social Marketing

Nobody doubts the growth and massification that this social platform has had. Moreover, its popularity has made many companies already see it as a powerful channel of communication, promotion to finally generate sales.

2011 will be the year in which many brands will make the leap and begin, timidly, to try strategies to take advantage of the potential of this platform. Many are already there and even many have been successful in their approach but the dynamism and speed with which this microblogging channel evolves, added to the increasingly demanding users, will cause companies to constantly reinvent themselves to establish real and lasting links with an increasingly disloyal and critical audience.

While Twitter has the potential to become a great marketing channel, it will be necessary to handle, very carefully, how brands approach this without being branded as “spammers” or “superficial brands”, given that as permanent users of this network , what we want least is intrusive and decontextualized brands.

It will be interesting to see how the agencies and brands approach this platform to achieve their ROI objectives without, on the other hand, losing the attention of the users.

Geolocation, context and feeling

The context and localized content, each day becomes more relevant and necessary for a more moved and technologically advanced audience. If we add that smartphones fall in price, we know that 2011 will be a year where mobile applications based on context and location will be smarter so they will surely have a major explosion.

In 2010 we saw that many geolocalized mobile applications and services emerged but many of them are not as smart as we might expect. The user of today, in addition to saying where he is, or what he is consuming, wants to tell the world how he feels, whether it was a good day or bad. If you are sad or happy In addition, you surely want an application to detect what you are looking for or ask on Twitter or Facebook and through geolocation, context and sentiment, these propose solutions tailored to your current needs.

When a person enters a supermarket and is “tagged” in FourSquare or another application, he wants the brand to know him and propose products that really interest him, adapt to his mood of the moment or simply present products, that their friends consume, with whom they have more affinity.

The brand’s mission is to understand the expressions, behaviors and feelings that users and their environment are showing on social platforms and through this feedback contextualize their services and tools to achieve a real contribution at the precise moment where the need arises.

F-Commerce

Facebook now has almost 650 million users in the world. A striking growth that, on the other hand, has made brands finally understand that instead of separating, it is necessary to unite and integrate services. By this I mean that, instead of having everything separate, a fanpage on the one hand, ecommerce on the other and the corporate blog on a third space, brands must be where their consumers are and open their services and tools within that same environment. Under their conditions and codes.

Considering this reality, there are already some brands that are integrating their ecommerce platforms to Facebook, thus creating a new concept which will be discussed a lot in 2011. The F-Commerce, that is, Facebook Commerce. In the USA, the Nine West, JC Penney and Pampers brands are already venturing into sales systems through this social network and considering the perceived growth of this network, this trend will only grow and strengthen the businesses of the companies that are willing to try this approach their products and services to the social environment of their consumers.

In turn, this will be very welcome by the users given that they will have everything that interests them in the same place, which finally will not only end up making life easier for the users but will also benefit the brands in terms of positioning, visibility and word of mouth.

Always On

“Always ON” means “Always Available”, and many brands are understanding the importance of always having a presence in the contexts where their current and potential clients move. Unfortunately, the error that many commit is to replicate their information in all their platforms, thus making an inefficient use of their communication channels. The typical thing that happens is that an article is published on the corporate site, then the same is sent by email, then the same article is published on Facebook and finally many times a link on Twitter is posted pointing to the site.

What companies must understand is that each channel must fulfill a task based on a common goal. This means that Email Marketing, the blog, Facebook, Twitter, the corporate website and mobile communication must be complemented in a way that manages to deliver timely and specially adapted information for the channel, through which the brand is communicating with its objective group.

To achieve this, it is very important that companies establish goals and objectives for each communication channel and based on this define their expectations of results and growth. This will be the only way we can establish if the channels are being used correctly or not.

In 2011, for sure, companies will bet on better training and understanding in each channel, relying on reliable metrics platforms to determine results of reach and valuation by consumers.

The key is to know how and why each channel works so that you can know what is being said there.

Metrics and Liquid Internet

No data or metrics can not measure results. Under this premise, during 2011, for sure, new measurement platforms will be appearing that have as their sole objective to measure results and based on this, facilitate the decision making of organizations.

Knowing how to cross data and results, will make a big difference in the way of doing business in the digital world. Mainly because this allows to better know the habits, behavior and needs of consumers.

We have already seen a trend with the appearance of the new platform Twitter Analytics or the interesting service offered by the company Adledge, which allows to measure the efficiency and visibility of digital media plans. In real time, it provides information on where your advertising is appearing and proposes actions to improve and optimize your investment.

Far more interesting than I have seen is the concept “Liquid Internet” which consists of adapting and configuring, in real time, your web content based on the behavior of your audience. This means that if two people enter a certain site at the same time they will not see the same thing, given that the system will measure their previous behavior and based on this will present the information they seek.

The company IQNOMY is already experimenting with this and the way they approach it is extremely interesting in terms of how, according to them, the way of doing business on the Internet will evolve.

Undoubtedly, 2011 will be the year of digital communication, where niche specialization and specific expertise will be highly valued by companies. We must remember that just as we, on the part of the agencies, learn and evolve, our clients are doing the same. This will increase the level of demand and in turn, will result in customers who each know more what they need.

And to finish I assure you that the following phrase will be repeated a lot in 2011: “If it is not on Twitter, it does not exist!”