Each year unveils new insights as marketers reflect back on the past in preparation for the future. This year is no different, with a new set of digital marketing trends and predictions for 2023 being released from top-tier industry publications, platforms, and thought leaders every other day.
The funny thing is—spoiler alert—each article is vastly different than the next—because each one is somewhat biased as marketers push trends or predictions meant to benefit their own businesses.
Not to mention, there are way too many of these think pieces, right? The marketing community is quite busy, to say the least. Who really has the time to think critically about every rendition?
That’s why we sifted through some of the industry’s top future-focused reports and tried to find commonalities between each. In the process, we pulled some third-party insights and added in a few of our own, creating not just a scannable list of tactics but an industry-wide consensus of the digital marketing trends and predictions for 2023 that actually matter.
You’re welcome. Let’s get started.
Not Your Grandpa’s TV Commercials
OTT, AVOD, and Streaming Media
TV consumption has changed over the past decade, and so has TV advertising with an endless amount of streaming apps as well as digital marketing opportunities.
With the introduction of Hulu’s self-service ad platform, it’s become incredibly easy for brands to traffic, target, and test ads among any of its desired audiences. And with Netflix, HBO Max, Paramount+, Disney+, and more also introducing ad-supported plans, the potential for more front-and-center advertising looms large in 2023.
But will consumers even want ad-supported television? As it turns out, the sheer amount of subscription-based TV options has started to become costly. In fact, according to Insider Intelligence, “a study by Morning Consult and Adweek found that more respondents were interested in an ad-supported option for a lower price than an ad-free option for a higher price.”
Pair the fact that more people are choosing ad-supported streaming television with the notion that streaming television is a medium with room to grow—making up a third of all TV consumption in the U.S. as of June 2022, per AdAge—and brands are staring at ground-level opportunities to grow alongside their audience right in the face.
Additionally, streaming TV creative can be syndicated across other popular video formats like YouTube, Twitch, TikTok, and Instagram, acting as a great way to optimize your efforts.
The Power of the Second Screen
Long-Form and Short-Form Video
The change in television consumption not only considers where people consume their favorite shows, it also considers how people consume them.
With the latest Netflix Original queued up, TV viewers can often be found with a fistful of popcorn in one hand and their trusted smartphone in the other. In fact, as of November 2021, 84% of U.S. adults claimed to split their attention between TV and another device, according to Adweek.
But what are they consuming on that second screen? Aside from following conversations about the shows they’re watching, they’re consuming—you guessed it—more video. And they’re using it purposefully in two separate ways: discovery and research.
Short-Form Video and Discovery
With 32 billion views on hashtags like #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt and the interaction count for Reels being almost 40% higher than traditional video per SmartBrief.com, short-form vertical video has become the discovery tool of choice among consumers.
For marketers, short-form video offers very distinct yet versatile use cases, able to be repurposed for paid media initiatives, influencer content reach, organic social engagement, cross-platform UGC, and more.
Plus, considering 85% of social media videos are watched without sound—and 80% more likely to be watched to completion with captions—shortform video is for the perfect second screen alongside streaming TV.
Long-Form Video and Research
Fact: YouTube is the most visited website in the world, serving its purpose as an entertainment platform as well as a research engine for those wanting to learn new hobbies, travel the world, try new dinner recipes, and even vet what products to buy.
In fact, studies claim 93% of people said that video is helpful when they’re purchasing a product, preferring video over reading or photography.
And with video platforms like Instagram and TikTok offering more long-form content options up to ten minutes in length, the opportunity to target broader yet more specific audiences across platforms offers more opportunities to make impressions and drive sales.
Time for a Reality Check
While the Metaverse has a long way to go before it becomes relevant to most marketers, its older cousin—augmented reality—appears to be making strides.
Beyond creating engaging filters for Instagram or even full-blown gaming platforms like 2016’s Pokémon Go, marketers and consumers alike are predicted to adopt AR as an ecommerce tool.
In fact, one study notes that 72% of shoppers have purchased items they didn’t plan to buy because of AR, 71% of shoppers would shop more often if they used AR apps, and 40% said they’d be willing to pay more for a product if they were allowed to test it via AR. Plus, from a user experience standpoint, 55% of shoppers admitted that AR makes shopping more fun and exciting.
AR can even help optimize marketing efforts, as noted by an experiment conducted by Shopify, which claimed AR can help boost click-through rates by up to 65%.
One of a few digital marketing trends that has existed for quite some time now, AR has truly begun to solidify itself in our culture as a multifaceted tool that can be used to enhance consumer experiences, improve brand perception, and boost sales.
And if streaming television and vertical video continue to gain momentum throughout 2023, don’t be surprised if AR finds more opportunities to integrate.
“As Seen on TV” Goes Social
Live-streaming Social Commerce
From Facebook Marketplace to Instagram Product Tags, Shoppable Pins and more, social platforms have been developing ecommerce solutions for quite some time now with growing success.
In fact, Influencer Marketing Hub notes that more than a third of Facebook users have purchased products directly from the platform with nearly a quarter of Instagram users following suit, despite the fact that Instagram recently deprioritized Shops in user interface.
That said, many believe the next iteration of social commerce is going live.
For TikTok, in particular, “live-stream commerce is the key earner in the Chinese version of the app, [Douyin]” according to Social Media Today.
While western culture hasn’t fully adopted this modern-aged QVC replica as part of the customer journey yet, the success that live shopping has had in Asian markets is enough for TikTok to test the waters.
And it’s not just TikTok either. Instagram and Pinterest are also testing live-stream shopping solutions, which would be an incredibly useful tool for influencers, creators, and brands who want to be able to tout product features to a live audience.
Plus, imagine being able to pair live shopping with an augmented reality experience for even greater user experiences? Those possibilities may not only soon exist, but be expected.
Recommended by Robots
With artificial intelligence continuing to learn and grow, it’s becoming more and more likely that the content delivered to our newsfeeds is recommended by AI, if not created by it entirely.
Per Social Media Today, Mark Zuckerberg recently stated that, “over the next year or two, we’ll start showing more recommended content in the Feed.”
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the reason is based on TikTok, which has won users’ hearts by focusing on recommended content via its For You page. Knowing this along with Instagram’s crushing need for Reels to compete—plus the fact that TikTok has other copycats like YouTube Shorts and even Twitter—AI is quickly becoming a bit of an influencer of its own.
Forbes points out that “AI’s ability to learn and predict outcomes based on data sets could play an increasing role in making this personalization at scale possible.”
And that’s the key word here—personalization. If marketers can harness the power of AI effectively, then targeting, optimization, and even content creation itself becomes much more efficient.
Let’s Create Together
Which of the above digital marketing trends and predictions for 2023 do you think is most applicable to your brand? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re eager to help you succeed.
Part of AGAIN Interactive's spirited creative team since 2014, Anthony Galasso is passionate about all aspects of digital marketing from strategy through execution and beyond. In his spare time, Anthony also loves to travel, try new foods, plays drums, and hike with his beagle, Hailey.