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10 Top Marketing Trends for 2018: Takeaways for Nonprofits

10 Top Marketing Trends for 2018: Takeaways for Nonprofits

While Instagram grows, Twitter stagnates, LinkedIn refreshes, and Facebook still dominates. Cord-cutting is on the rise and TV viewership on the low. We’ve been scanning the internet air waves for the latest and greatest insights for your marketing efforts this year. Here are some commonly predicted marketing trends and key takeaways for nonprofits in 2018:


  • Strategy Documentation


Do you have a plan for your marketing and is it guided by a larger strategy? Devise your content strategy for 2018, and be sure to write it down. This type of record will provide your organization with a roadmap that can be referred to when needed. Seeing your strategy and plan on paper also provides a handy, at-a-glance resource that can provide a full picture of what you’re doing. Since marketing doesn’t happen in a vacuum, you  can view your efforts as they relate to the whole and ensure that they complement and build on each other.


  • Journey Mapping


Do you know how people become aware of your organization? Do you know all the touchpoints they have with your brand? Understanding how they move from awareness through to advocacy is important for planning your marketing strategy.


  • Personalization


Along the journey, how can you create a more personalized experience for your audience? Is there a way to send more individualized messages or offer products or services more aligned with their needs? This personalization could be one-to-one or for groups (e.g., first-time donors, volunteers, investors, etc.)


  • Customer Experience Marketing


The experiences people have with your organization and its various touchpoints builds into your brand’s equity. If you mainly interact online, are you embracing chatbots and other AI into your website and other digital channels? These tools can help with managing interactions, providing assistance, and facilitating conversion. Plan for your marketing activities to revolve around the “customer”.


  • Influencer Marketing


Think about how you can integrate influencer-generated content into your marketing efforts. Is there a personality or online influencer that aligns well with your cause? You could recruit them as a spokesperson or ambassador for your organization. You don’t have to set your sights high: Micro-influencers may be key, so think local or grassroots. Just remember, transparency is key. Be clear about the nature of your relationship.


  • Experiential Marketing


With an ever-growing amount of content, it’s hard to connect with people, let alone be seen by them. Think about how you can link on-the-ground events with digital and traditional marketing efforts. Is there a way to start sharing content and conducting promotion activities for an on-the-ground event online and then continuing those activities into the event? The more seamless the integration of digital and real-life, the better. Also, is there a way to repurpose photos and videos generated at on-the-ground events for other marketing campaigns? The real-life look and feel of that content could add appeal to your campaign.


  • Video Marketing


Video content can help boost search engine rankings, helping drive website traffic. Video content also has higher reach and engagement than other content, with live video content performing at even higher levels. Incorporate video into multiple touchpoints along people’s journeys with your brand and organization.



“Is there human trafficking in my state?” This question and others like it are now brand touchpoints. Voice search is the future. Is your organization and its content ready and optimized for voice-assisted devices?


  • Virtual & Augmented Reality


How can you use environment enhancements to bring awareness to your cause? Could you use virtual reality to help users see a societal issue up close or in a different light? Or could you encourage online participation in an awareness day with an augmented reality game or filter?


  • Native Advertising


Native ads (those that follow the look, feel and experience of platform they are on) result in higher achievement of marketing objectives. Incorporate these types of ads into your marketing strategy for more bang for your buck.

See more on 2018 marketing trend predictions from some of our faves: