The change is only constant in digital marketing. Here are some key trends for 2017, based on the analysis of available data and early adoption/growth.

# Brands Will Increasingly Rely on Data to Make Important Business Decisions

More and more brands will rely on data to tell them who is buying what, when, and what messaging is most effective for them.

Brands that currently use half baked measures to understand their marketing performance will start using marketing automation tools like Hubspot and Marketo. Those who already get it, will look for ways to analyze and visualize their data better for efficient decision making. Savvy brands will start using new business intelligence and data visualization tools like Domo and GoodData.

# Brands Will Crack the Code of Marketing on Messaging Apps with Mixed Success

Brands already know how to connect with consumers using email and text messages. They have still not been able to figure out how to successfully sell or market on messaging apps.

Facebook’s announcement about Messenger’s support for bots, meant that marketers can now send personalized messages to users through Messenger, such as order confirmations or shipping updates.

The interaction that has started with customer support and transaction messaging will slowly turn into marketing and sales related communication. The brands that perfect it in 2017 will win big time before marketers hack it and this channel also gets cluttered like other marketing channels.

# Brands Will Adopt “Immersive Experience” Video Content

Live streaming is already big and it is going to stay here. We now know how it worked for ‘Chewbacca Mom’ and also for a random experiment like Buzzfeed’s Watermelon blow-up.

According to Facebook, more people tuned in to watch watermelon event live than any other live video. While watching it a large numbers of viewers were anxious because they thought they were doing nothing but just staring at their screens.

To take it to the next level brands will work on offering immersive experiences to consumers.  Some of the brands will leverage augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) to do it.

Starting point for most brands will be livestreams with some level of two-way interactions giving the consumers a good reason to stay engaged. Live video adoption has been moving upward  or the last few years, but in 2017 more brands and more individuals than ever, will utilize it. Brands will also leverage platforms like YouTube live 360° video. Once they see engagement they will invest more resources and craft well thought, finer experiences.

You should explore more to understand the opportunities that these trends offer, as it relates to your brand. Based on what you find out, integrate it in your campaigns. All of them may not work for you but they are worth considering as you formulate your plans for 2017.