By Melissa Peterson
As any marketer would tell you, what worked yesterday won’t necessarily work today. That’s why it’s important to stay informed about and open to new approaches. Don’t worry—we’ve done the hard work for you, personally curating a list of the top marketing trends for 2024 and breaking down why they work.
This year, we dare you to be intrepid. As you map out your 2024 marketing playbook, try something new, like one (or all) of these trends.
It’s been estimated that consumers are hit with hundreds to thousands of ads each day. From reading the news to checking their mailboxes, ads are everywhere they turn. As a result, they’ve grown accustomed to tuning them out. It takes extra big ideas to really cut through all the noise and grab someone’s attention.
Out are the traditional ads riddled with sales-speak. In are the totally out-there ideas that make people do a double-take or wonder, “What on earth did I just see?” Take Liquid Death, for example. What other packaged water companies have turned hate comments into songs (sold on actual vinyl and available for streaming) and taken brand partnerships to the extreme(ly creative, radical, and unheard of)?
Liquid Death takes marketing to a never-before-seen level in the water industry. Its unapologetically creative (and sometimes absurd) ads reinforce the brand’s bold position in the market and earn it cult followers.
There’s so much clutter online that even Marie Kondo would struggle to make sense of everything. That’s why search engine algorithms favor clean, seamless website experiences where hyperlinks make sense and tell the search engine (and readers) exactly what each piece of content is about. This can be accomplished through pillar pages.
Pillar pages are high-level pieces of content that broadly overview a core topic. Each pillar page links out to in-depth articles about specific subtopics (or sub-pillars). Supporting each pillar and subtopic is blog content, with each individual blog post focusing on the questions consumers are searching relative to the pillar topic. Done right, a pillar strategy can improve the user experience and drive more traffic and more conversions. Talk about a win-win.
Short-Form Video Content
TikTok. Need we say more? The fastest-growing social media platform has been shaping the marketing world since it first came on the scene, from resurrecting vertical videos to effectively hailing short-form video as King of All Content.
In actuality, this isn’t too surprising. Since the dawn of the Internet, where consumers can access nearly any information they desire within a snap, marketers have been lauding “hooks” to grab consumers’ attention and reel them in. Short-form videos perfectly emulate this principle: they get. to. the. point. And not only do consumers love short videos, but so too do algorithms. So, if it’s increased impressions or even virality you’re after, short-form videos are your best bet.
However, all this isn’t to say that still images or longer videos are dead. In fact, we’ve seen some effective long-form video ads (like this one from Google) that were so compelling, so enticing, that we completely ignored the “skip” button—a true marketing miracle. You can still find success without short-form video; it just might be harder earned.
This Levi’s video subtly promotes four products that are perfect for gift-giving, all in a satisfying, under-30-second video.
The influencer pool continues to grow each year, with an influencer for seemingly every niche category. And for good reason: they’re a great way to build brand equity and get your product out there through a network of consumers’ “trusted friends.”
Need an influencer for dog owners? Instagram has them in troves. What about influencers for board games or puzzles? Yep, they’re out there. Cleaning supplies? Plant-based beauty products? Drywall installation? Check, check, and check.
So no matter your market, keep influencers in mind as a way to introduce new customers to your brand. And if you combine influencer marketing with the trend above—*chef’s kiss.*
The influencer market is alive and well in just about every segment—even drywall!
Leveraging Pop Culture and Memes
Many brands continue to stay “relevant” on social media by putting their own twist on trending memes and pop culture topics. We saw this to the extreme with Barbie—everywhere you looked was another company promoting its pink products, posting ads with Barbie-inspired messaging, or sharing their own creative rendition of the DIY Barbie Instagram filter.
Anytime a new meme crops up, you’re sure to see it across social media with different brands sharing their take on it. These posts are always a great hit with consumers, as it makes the brand feel more relatable, like a friend one can laugh with. Humor is hot in marketing, and leveraging pop culture and memes is a great way to dip your toe in.
Who Gives a Crap—a company that makes toilet paper from bamboo and recycled paper—jumped on the Spotify Wrapped bandwagon with its own rendition.
It might just be the explorers in us, but we see AI as a new frontier for marketers. Don’t worry—we’re in no way suggesting that AI should replace any part of a marketing team. Rather, there’s much to be discovered about the ways marketers can use AI as a supplement to their work. In fact, our own team has already started to experiment with this.
From help with initial researching to quickly whipping up a proof of concept, AI can be used as a tool to make marketers’ lives that much easier. Regardless of how it’s used, all AI output still requires a human touch to finesse the work and maintain authenticity and brand voice.
Remember what we said about bold creative? Few ads geared toward steel framing contractors take a humorous approach. This ad from ClarkDietrich—which started with AI—is sure to stop them in their tracks.
There you have it—our favorite (and effective) marketing trends to explore in 2024. Go forth and prosper! (And if you’d prefer to have a trusted guide with you along the way, you know where to find us.)