Five things you should do this year

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1.     Act intelligent

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning will ramp up it’s already increasing role in the marketing mix, as brands look to further personalise and automate communication across all channels.

2.     Be more human

We’ve never had more accessible technology to gather big data about consumers. To cut through the noise, marketers must leverage the tools available to foster a deeper understanding of real human behaviour, not just faceless data alone. In turn, forging a more powerful and lasting connection between brand and consumer.

3.     Sell smarter

The fact that smart speakers (and smart home products) are now largely mainstream (9.5m homes in the UK) creates a lucrative advertising opportunity for brands and marketers alike. Enabling them to serve bespoke automated content to their target audiences while they’re most receptive.

4.     Start talking

Consumers and brands will become increasingly connected by shared learning and dialogue. Creating a conversation with your audiences by providing insights and knowledge is invaluable – working together to establish trust, and thus sales.

5.     Think small

Still a relatively underutilised market, local and micro influencers share much higher levels of trust with their followers than traditional influencers (the likes of Kendall Jenner) do. These guys (and girls) typically have below 5000 followers but staggeringly high engagement. Many brands are already on the bandwagon, getting much more bang for their buck.