2020’s Digital Marketing Predictions: Were they right?

At the end of 2019, DigitalMarketer released an article titled “How Digital Marketing Will Change: 17 Predictions for 2020“.

Digital marketing is no stranger to changes. We have to stay on our toes if we want to stay relevant


This quote was a strong start to the article that I completely agree with. Throughout the article different experts discuss what changes businesses and content creators need to make to maintain relevancy as the digital landscape changes. The fact that the article was not written by one person but instead was a collaborative effort surprised me, but from reading the different perspectives I believe it was vital to include differing opinions in the article.

Benton Crane described it as “marketing chess”. I thought that was interesting way to describe the idea that needing to have differing kinds of content is vital. I agree that that is a great way to adapt to algorithms while maintaining a brand image.

Additionally, I agree with Logan Fletcher’s perspective that video content is becoming more prominent. I see more people engaging with video content than reading articles or viewing images. Later in the article, Jenna Snavely discusses something similar, that I agree with. Video content is vital to building a brand voice, especially in short formatting. If you serialize it, however, that could lead to a decrease in viewership due to people losing interest overtime.

I agree with Michelle Barnum Smith’s perspective that branding can be about building a community, but I don’t know if agree that making chat bots is a good way of going about that. The issue with the telephone numbers popular creators like Philip Defranco and Gary Vee have are the lack of personal responses.

Gary Vee on Twitter

They claim to get to as many as possible, but many are left without personal responses and more generic messages that leave those who sent messages feeling out of place. Increasing chats or creating chat bots might just make your company feel less human rather than more human.

Tara Robertson discusses that many businesses need to have the ability to stand out in order to succeed, and with that I agree. However, I find myself disagreeing with the quality over quantity only approach.

It is okay to have some low quality content, especially through platforms like Snapchat or features like Instagram stories. Being more authentic is vital, yes, but if you cannot keep up with producing content it might get left behind. However, some platforms are working against that. Tik Tok on one hand is still promoting older videos of creators unlike other platforms that provide more current content.

Nathalie Lussier, in her part of the article, discusses how more companies will likely pay for more digital ads rather than TV ads. I personally know many who are disconnecting from services such as cable in favor of Digital platforms like Netflix and Hulu. It is likely that people will pay for their ads to go with shows they were already marketing with, just on different platforms than they were originally. I definitely agree that this will more than likely cause an increase in pricing.

The article also discusses intensifying polarization and woke marketing.

I agree that more marketing is based on the political climate. This can be vital if it matches your brand image, or if you are working directly with a political campaign. However, people need to take that with hesitation and think about it before they finalize it, as they could easily make their target market feel unwelcome, like what happened with the Scandinavian Airlines Ad.

Scandinavian Airlines Comercial

Through this advertisement, Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) hurt its brand image by discrediting the country it represented. It later pulled the original ad, and reformatted it to be shorter in length.

Scandinavian Airlines Commercial Shortened Version

Many online posted about the commercial and how it discredited its own audience. This is why marketers need to tread carefully when they attempt to create ‘woke’ ad campaigns.

Izabella Nilsson Jarvandi discusses her opinion on the advertisement in her 2 minute video.

Some creators who commented on the situation included Laruen Chen, Arch Warhammer, Bjorn Andreas Bull-Hansen, Izabella Nilsson Jarvandi, and Based and beautiful.

As we continue through DigitalMarketer’s article, I tend to agree with those who discuss their predictions.

Rachel Pedersen discusses different strategies that businesses and creators may want to use, and how real content is what people are looking for.

I agree that more people are looking for real content produced by people rather than corporations. By creating real content and being honest with those who engage with your content you are more likely to maintain your audience.

I agree that Tik Tok is vital as more people are joining the platform. Going Live seems to be more prominent as time goes on, but you need to ensure you have the capability for it.

I do not know if agree that the podcast should be done anywhere, as sound quality is important, and if what is happening in the background distracts your audience from your content, it might not be worth it. I don’t know if I fully agree with disregarding Photoshop entirely, but I do agree that it shouldn’t take away from the authenticity of photos. If you use it to fix lighting or edit the photo to be dramatic or unrealistic on purpose it is different than fixing what you perceive as flaws that are not actually flaws, such as the scar example.

I agree that videos should not only be scripted, but a lot of the time is there is not even an outline the videos can ramble and not make a point. Make sure to stay on topic if you have one.

I agree that people and companies should be honest. If you’re honest now, people will believe you later. You do not want to be the boy who cried wolf.

Reading the section about honesty reminded me of a movie I went to see last night and the marketing for it.

I dressed up to go see this movie. It was amazing.

I went to see My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising on the first night I could. In the movie, two of the children characters cry wolf and claim to either be missing or under attack when they are not actually in danger. This causes one of the characters to not believe them when actual danger arises. As I read the article, and reached the section on honesty, that is what originally made me think of the movie and relate it back.

However, I had also been watching the advertising campaign for months from the official accounts. There was a lot of hype for the movie provided by the fan-base alone, and the official companies and voice actors were able to use that to continue the excitement for the film.

One such voice actor was Zeno Robinson, who was announced as the voice actor for a popular character, Hawks, who had not appeared in the show yet, but was a prominent character in the movie.

Ash Roy made a similar argument as Rachel Pedersen that podcasting would grow, though Ash Roy went more into it. I agree that podcasting will grow. I’ve even started one, though I have not had much time to record for it. I agree that voice search is increasing as well, especially through Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. My Online Search Strategies class is focusing so much on how people search but we haven’t even discussed the difference in searching with a person’s voice and with their laptop or phone and how that could change the keywords and phrasing.

I agree with Neil Flinchbaugh, that Facebook is excellent if you are looking to gear towards a specific market and is highly competitive. I agree that they will have to gain people’s attention quickly. Nothing click-bait works for most people, as if it isn’t what they expected they just close out of the tab. Loops work very well especially when you use stories. This is why Tik Tok and vines work so well to be remembered. People watch them on loop.

With Eva Gutierrez’s perspective, I agree that having high quality content will be more likely to gain sponsors and new viewers, but without creating a high quantity of content it will be less likely to be seen.

Ralph Burns I can agree with in the sense that engagement bait is extremely popular, especially on apps like Tik Tok. “Like and Follow for pt 2” and “If this gets __ likes I’ll make a part 2” are often heard on the app. This often annoys people more than anything else, but it does work.

With Mike Rhodes I agree that it seems automation is being implemented more and more. If you do not utilize AI in your work it seems it won’t go places.

I tend to agree that targeted keywords are less likely to be effective, but I honestly do not think they will disappear entirely, as they are prominently used in how websites and content is found online.

I agree that cross channel is important. By creating similar content that matches your theme across different platforms you can gain audiences from one platform to the next.

Sherry Bonelli and I agree that the google business profile is replacing homepages more and more, as I often select businesses based on the google results rather than going directly to the website. However, I feel this is already happening more and more and is not a new trend for 2020.

Overall the article seemed like most knew what they were talking about and had great ideas of where to go, but the digital landscape is changing so rapidly that if you use one platform more than another you will gain a different perspective of what is going on and what will happen.

TLDR: The article by DigitalMarketer provides some great incite into the field of Digital Marketing for 2020, and some trends are simply continuing rather than just starting now.

2020’s Digital Marketing Predictions: Were they right?

Spoonfuls of Sugar: A Perspective on Digital Marketing


The entire purpose of marketing is to convince a potential consumer to say this one simple word. It offers an agreement to make a purchase for a specific product or service. However, in order for a marketing plan to succeed, there is set criteria that have to be considered and evaluated; there are strategic moves that have to be played.

As a student who has taken a diverse array of marketing classes, and who has plans to pursue marketing as a career, I’d like to say that I could point out these specific factors in any everyday situation. As a seventeen-year-old high school senior, however, I can say that is not the case even though I am personally and professionally marketed to every day. 

For example:

My sister, in her sweetest angel voice, asked me if she could borrow my favorite white sweater.

I said yes.

My boss, after mentioning the possibility of a potential raise, asked me if I could stay late.

I said yes. 

My mom, knee-deep in last week’s laundry, asked me if I could do her a favor and wash dishes.

I said yes. 

In each one of these scenarios, I agreed to something that I didn’t want to do. I didn’t want to give away my sweater; I didn’t want to stay late; I didn’t want to wash dishes. And yet, in every scenario, I agreed to the conditions.

So what was it that made me say, “Yes” to those questions? What made me change my mind?

In my opinion, the answer is as simple as this: a spoonful of sugar. 

Now, I don’t literally mean a spoonful of sugar. (Although, I wouldn’t argue against it if offered.) What I mean is that each individual knew that they needed to add something beneficial or sympathetic―something sweet―to the service in order for me to agree to their terms. These alluring additives took the bitter taste out of the undesirable action, finally convincing me against my previous position. All of these individuals knew exactly how to market their situation to me. However, situations in my personal life are not the only thing that this applies to; this idea is also applicable in any marketing opportunities. 

It is no secret that the world of marketing has taken a dramatic shift in the last half-century. Diverse audiences have grown, new products have been developed, controversial opinions have been authored, and companies have been trying to keep up with this progressive age. However, the main goal for these companies and the world of marketing has still remained the same: to maximize potential revenue. 

This is where the “spoonful of sugar” comes into play. As technology began to become more accessible, and the world became more fast-paced, the marketing world was forced to change as well. Newspapers were being read online, television was beginning to be watched through online providers, and they recognized the fact that they would need something “sweeter”, something more alluring, than the door-to-door salesmen.

Similar to the techniques used by the individuals in my examples, the business world created the concept of digital marketing as their alluring idea. However, no matter it being a relatively new concept, I’ve had the opportunity to see how compelling it can be. 

Last year, during my junior year of high school, I was given the opportunity to hold a position on the Social Media/PR committee for Wisconsin Leadership Seminars. Every year, the organization holds a fundraiser on Facebook to raise money for their annual conference. In order to increase engagement and participation, the committee agreed to pay for ads on Facebook. Even with encouragement, WILS couldn’t guarantee that their members would repost the fundraiser. With the advertisement, they were then able to assure that people would see at least see it. This action lead to a significant increase in donations for the fundraiser. 

Before this experience, I never really considered the depths of digital marketing and the significance of advertising online. Television ads are expensive, and especially in this situation, would have most likely proven ineffective as our target audience were the WILS alumni—much of whom already follow the Facebook page. It was much easier to get a “yes” from those who knew about the organization and were once a part of it.

People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories, and magic.

Jeff Godwin

This opportunity allowed me to realize that marketing, especially digital marketing, involves much more than an attempt to receive a “yes” from consumers.

It’s is about the relationship between the company and consumer.

It’s about the story behind the business and message.

It’s about the magic of business.

Spoonfuls of Sugar: A Perspective on Digital Marketing

Social Sharing: The Power of Social Media

Having a website for a company is a big accomplishment, however, that does not mean that your target audience can automatically find the website in search engine results. One of the most popular tools to drive traffic to a website is through the use of social media. For the purpose of this article, we will take a look at Instagram as the main tool for customer acquisition.

The following websites are well-known, trusted brands that do a wonderful job at utilizing social media to promote their products and drive traffic to their website.

facebook application icon


1. Go Pro

Go Pro uses social media to educate the consumer about the qualities and abilities of its’ products. For example, they share photos and videos of action shots that are superior quality and very difficult to capture without the product. In doing so, they gain the customers attention while adding in links and direction to the company website. This is a great way to share content because it educates the consumer in an indirect, relatable way while also promoting the product.

This affects how the content is shared and the frequency of engagement because it draws in the consumer, first, and only thereafter promotes the website and product. Instagram is a wonderful tool for companies like this as it is all revolving around photos and videos.

black action camera


2. GQ Magazine

QG magazine uses Instagram to share the latest trends in men’s fashion via photos and videos. Instagram is a great tool for fashion companies as this industry is all about visual representation – therefore they are able to get the point across easily and directly.

Another great reason for fashion companies to utilize Instagram versus other types of visual marketing is because Instagram allows the marketer to tag and link the actual products that you are viewing in the photo. This makes it easy for consumers to identify what they like and, in turn, how to find it.

shallow focus photography of clothes


3. Cannon USA

Cannon USA also uses Instagram to educate the consumer on product abilities and functions, as well as showcase a gallery of product accomplishments. Very similar to Go Pro, this company uses the photos to gain the attention of prospects and direct them to their website through the use of links, tags, and profile information.

camera canon dslr electronics


In a Nutshell…

For Go Pro and Cannon, Instagram social media is much better than print ads for the sole reason that they are able to use product imagery to educate and entice the consumer with examples, all while providing links to products and the company website. For GQ magazine, social media is a better tool than print ads for the sole reason that they can promote their products via imagery and direct the consumer directly to the product being viewed.


Social Sharing: The Power of Social Media