In 2017 we can expect to see more big changes across the world of digital marketing. Over the last few years we’ve passed many major milestones, such as the turning point for mobile traffic which now accounts for the majority of all internet usage and visits to websites.

Meanwhile, the spectrum of different platforms available has continued to develop and diversify, with brands racing to keep up with the latest trends. If you’re interested in pushing the boundaries and getting to new audiences before your competitors, don’t delay any longer – this list of upcoming trends should give you some inspiration.

Live Streaming

Facebook is the main player pushing live video to the masses right now. Periscope was on the verge of taking off in a big way about a year ago, but it was quickly snapped up by Twitter who are yet to launch their version of the technology. We can probably expect this very soon.

Live video is an extremely engaging channel that allows businesses to have virtual guests at their real life events, opening up a real-time, two-way communication channel that makes everything feel more exciting. We can expect to see much wider use of live streaming for marketing reasons as the year goes on.

Personalised Marketing

As we spend more time online, we leave more digital footprints. Companies are getting better at harvesting this information and processing it to draw up coherent customer profiles. This brings with it a level of precision-targeting we’ve never seen before, and technology continues to improve in this field.

As a result, all the adverts we see online and getting increasingly specific, which significantly boosts businesses’ chances of getting interactions from these. This is mutually beneficial, since users are exposed to fewer generic ads, and businesses don’t waste money casting nets too widely.

Augmented Reality

Virtual reality has definitely entered the mainstream, although its marketing applications are currently limited. Some of the most forward-thinking brands are now looking to change that by taking it a step further with augmented reality.

To get a sense of how this can realistically work, think about apps like Snapchat and Pokémon Go which overlay effects and animations on what’s physically in front of you by using your camera phone. Soon we can expect to see more apps that function as personal shopping assistants, helping you find items in shops and providing on-screen information about them using the same principle.

Location-sensitive mobile marketing

Your mobile phone can provide a wealth of information about your behaviour which companies would love to get their hands on. One data type that’s relatively easy to track (once you get someone to install your app) is a person’s location. Some brands are now using this live data to target people with specific ads based on their past purchases.

For example, walking into the vicinity of a particular shop (using technology called geo-fencing) could trigger a notification to remind you about the gift certificate you still have to spend there. Airline apps now offer passengers helpful services like in-flight entertainment guides and live departure updates as they move through the airport and get ready for their flight.

These are just a few of the futuristic techniques we can expect to see more of in the coming months. If you want to stay ahead of the curve, we recommend experimenting with some of these yourself to try and reach your customers in new and exciting ways.