It’s 2017, and inbound, content, and social media marketing are not dead just yet, in fact there are more opportunities for ROI in digital marketing than ever before.


This is great news for creative marketing strategists like Stern Inbound Marketing, but it’s also great news for YOU. Here’s why.


The year 2016 saw it’s fill of brands, personalities and individuals making their mark on the digital advertising space. In 2016 we saw the rise of Snapchat, introduction of Instagram Stories, the development of Facebook Live, and Twitter Moments.


In 2017, here’s what we expect to see in digital marketing.


  1. Search is now more important than ever.


With Google’s algorithm incorporating content from social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, keeping your SEO up to date is more vital than ever before.


Google crawls your Facebook pages and Twitter profiles the same way it does Web landing pages, according to Google Webmaster Matt Cutts.The good news for small businesses in particular? Google doesn’t care whether you have 10 followers or 10 million followers. All social media sites are created equal, at least in Google’s eyes. Just because you have a smaller following doesn’t automatically mean your business will end up on page 30 of Google.


Takeaway: Spend time in 2017 to create, develop, and continue to support your social media sites with great content. Your company’s profile WILL show up in search, and therein lies a great opportunity for you to make sure the first things potential customers see is an up-to-date and personable page that showcases your business in the best possible light.


  1. Snapchat will go public and brands will start broadcasting.


Sharing videos isn’t just for YouTube anymore. Beginning in 2015 with the explosion of Snapchat’s video-messaging capacity, other social media platforms have begun to follow suit.


In August 2015, Instagram added a “Stories” feature to the top of its homepage, making sure to release the update in time for the Video Music Awards on Aug. 28. Celebrities from Arianna Grande to DJ Khaled broadcast live from the red carpet and showcased new music video clips via Instagram Stories, resulting in a total video engagement increase of 58% on Instagram for VMA videos vs. last year, according to Tubular Insights.


Takeaway:  Learn to live-stream and your customers will thank you. Snapchat is set to go public this year with one of the biggest tech IPOs in years, which almost guarantees its continued popularity (at least by shareholders).


With an approximate valuation now of over $20 billion, the video messaging app is now worth about the same amount that Twitter was when it made its Initial Public Offering in 2013.


  1. Influencers and brand partnerships will increase.


An Influencer can be anyone from a well-known celebrity like Rihanna to someone who has a huge Snapchat following like artist Georgio Copter.


Well-known brands like RedBull and GoPro have already reaped the rewards of appointing influencers to help spread brand awareness and get more people to buy their products. For example, RedBull’s College Ambassador program is aimed at getting more college students to drink RedBull — by recruiting students who already love the energy drink to become campus ambassadors and getting their fellow students to try the drink.


Influencer marketing creates trust and strengthens your company’s credibility. A study from Nielsen found that 92 percent of people trust brand recommendations from individuals, even if they don’t personally know them.


Takeaway: First, focus on finding out what social media channels your main demographic frequents. Then, work with an influencer to sponsor your product or service as part of an ad campaign — whether that’s a 30-second Snapchat ad or a local celebrity going live on Facebook with your product.


Ready to #GetStern in 2017? Call our CEO at the number below to schedule a SternStorming session.