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The New Year is now well underway and Conscious Communications is on hand to ensure your business is ahead of the game with our public relations and marketing trend predictions for 2016. Here’s a summary of some of the things we think will happen this year:

Quality content across all mediums

We all know successful content marketing can be a powerful tool for any business, but this year will bring it into ever greater focus and importance.

Content marketing now needs to extend beyond just quality and connect with an audience across multiple mediums. Using social media, email marketing, infographics, whitepapers, articles, newsletters and even email signatures to attract the right people to view your content will be an essential marketing tactic this year.  In short, quality content needs to be combined with a cohesive strategy to target and amplify it, in order to reach the greatest percentage of your potential audience as possible.

Focus on ethics

As a value close to the Conscious Communications team’s heart, we’re pleased to predict that a greater focus on ethics will emerge in 2016.

A business that possesses an ethical focus is a more attractive prospect to new business partners and suppliers, and to potential staff – people want to work with and for organisations that are principled and decent. 2016 will bring about a focus on social enterprise, driven by growing demand for businesses that are seen to be positively impacting on human and environmental wellbeing. This year public relations and marketing strategies should focus on helping brands and organisations achieve a reputation as a force for good.

Millennials? What millennials?

Millennials will be consigned to the scrap heap in 2016, with marketing set to become ‘age agnostic’.

The fact that people can now download a browser extension which turns every use of the word millennial into ‘snake people’ underlines the point that the term ‘millennials’ is not as relevant as it used to be. Instead, the public relations and marketing industry is beginning to place more emphasis on reaching audiences based on their passions rather than their age. Audiences will be targeted based on specific attitudes and certain beliefs with increasingly refined content which targets different groups within an age range – rather than just an age group as a whole. However, age grouping  will still be an important factor, especially in an increasingly technological age where generational gaps are highlighted by technology. This year marketing will focus on what actually motivates an audience; their interests, hobbies and individual lives, as well as taking their age into account.

Social media

No trend prediction would be complete without a focus on social media – here’s are a few salient points for the year ahead:

  • Virtual reality (VR) – 2016 will be the year that VR becomes a major player, not just for the gaming industry, but also for marketers. Facebook has recently launched its 360 videos (click here for an example) which allow users to experience scenes from different angles, across both web and mobile devices. This technology could offer marketing professionals the opportunity to create some truly interactive content.
  • Immediate, intimate content – platforms like Periscope, Meerkat and Facebook Live provide a new level of immediacy to social media. Marketing now needs to target moments, as consumers expect to see events as they unfold. 2016 will see the rise of live-streaming, providing the immediacy and intimacy that audiences want.
  • Long form social content – social media will no longer favour short messages over longer messages. LinkedIn, Facebook and blogging platform Medium are all looking at incorporating long form publishing on their sites. Not to mention the recent news that Twitter will be increasing their character limit from 140 to 10,000.

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