According to Forbes.com, more and more businesses will be investing in brand management in 2013. They have compiled a list of trends that catapulted in 2012 and are expected to do even better in 2013. The list is below.
- Brand Accountability. Social media reputation management has never been more important, and brand transparency is critical. In 2013, even the smallest mistake can become a huge public relations problem. You need to be ready with response plans in place to protect your brand reputation.
- Brand Trust. Social media also makes it easy for consumers to confirm if a brand really walks the walk and talks the talk. It’s a lot harder to earn consumers’ trust in your brand today, and it will be even harder in 2013.
- Brand Flexibility. The world is changing faster than ever, and so is the social web. To top it off, hyper-connectivity will reach record levels with the growth of mobile device usage in 2013. Your brand needs to drive the change, not just try to keep up with it. If your brand isn’t able to adapt, another brand will.
- Brand Experience. In 2012, we started to see a significant shift to brand storytelling and creating branded experiences. If Apple could do it, why can’t other brands? That line of thinking brought us emotion-driven ads from Google and slick copycat designs from Microsoft (e.g., the Microsoft Surface ads, Microsoft stores, and the Microsoft Store website). Every brand should be creating brand experiences both in-person and online in 2013. If you’re not creating them already, you’re late.
- Brand Visualization. In 2012, the world witnessed the rapid growth of sites like Pinterest and Instagram that brought the demand for visual content to the forefront of digital publishing. Images didn’t just enhance content anymore. In 2012, images were the content, and people loved it. Brands need to embrace visual content to tell their stories in 2012 just like the global audience has.
- Brand Crowdsourcing. 2013 should be the year for all brands to leverage the collective voice of brand advocates and turn their content and conversations into marketing opportunities. Leaving the crowd untapped is one of the biggest mistakes brand marketers could make in the coming 12 months.
- Brands as Social Influencers. Consumers expect brands to use their money and their reach for social, environmental, and economic good. Corporate social responsibility is important to every company, but brand marketing executives should make positioning their brands as social influencers a strategic priority in 2013.
- Brand Data. Big data, research data, competitive analysis data, consumer data, and every other type of data you can think of will be included in marketers’ goals for 2013. Turning that data into actionable metrics and initiatives will be the more challenging step, and it’s one that all brand marketers should be concerned with in the coming 12 months and beyond.
- Brand Behavior. Using the data collected throughout the year, brand marketers will need to leverage behavioral targeting, particularly to increase ROI for digital and mobile marketing campaigns.
- Brand Content. In 2012, we saw a proliferation of branded content that had little focus and lacked clear strategy. Brand marketers who develop focused content plans with clear objectives in 2013 will reap the rewards that content marketing can deliver for many years to come.
See any trends that have been left off the list? Feel free to leave a comment below!