December 17, 2015

5 of my digital “predictions” for 2016

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Here’s some stuff I’ve been thinking a lot about recently – and what I think will continue to be #on #trend  in the digital media world in 2016.

1. The importance of newsletters!

Of course I would say this, having launched one myself this year, but honestly, I can’t believe how high the open rate is! I think people really like newsletters if they include interesting things! (I promise I’ll keep trying my best to include lots of juicy links). There’s no doubt it’s a great way to share your own and other people’s work. But I’m talking more about how lots of older publishers are having to seriously think about upgrading the quality and ease of their newsletters. I read so many articles because they are sold to me really cleverly in the subject line of a newsletter in my inbox. A magazine with a frigging good newsletter is a successful one in my eyes.

2. More social commenting!

I’ve read a lot recently on the big mystery of disappearing blog comments. I particularly enjoyed Poppy Dinsey’s post “are blog comments totally dying out?” It appears that a lot of bloggers across the board have noticed that website comments are decreasing whilst comments on social media are increasing.

I.e. readers of your blog are more likely to send you saying “I LOVED/HATED THIS BLOG POST” via a social network than as a blog comment. I actually really like the fact that this is happening, because it means that a comment is more public and more like to inspire others to read the post, or indeed debate it, if they didn’t like it.

3. Even more deletable apps!

We love stuff that deletes. It eases our social anxieties. Obviously this was THE YEAR of Snapchat. It was voted Best Digital Brand Of The Year for “asking brands to shell out $750,000 for disappearing ads”. When you put it like that: HOLY SHIT. WINNING. Facebook are rumoured to be testing out a “self-destructible messaging tool” much like Snapchat (the tool they tried to buy back in 2013.) I love this piece by Ann Friedman called “Living in a Post-Delete Word.”

4. Long reads, long reads, long reads!

OK, yes, our attention spans are as long as a Dory from Finding Nemo and sometimes we do just want to view a disappearing Snap to feel satisfied when lying in bed, knackered, with our phone to keep us company. BUT I DO TRULY BELIEVE THAT WE ALL LIKE TO R.E.A.D. Especially Young People. Buzzfeed recently revealed that their piece Why I Bought a House in Detroit for $500 got more than a million pageviews – and it’s 6,000 words long. (This is a really interesting article: Sit Back and Relax, and Read That Long Story – On Your Phone.)

5. The booming influencer industry!

As Forbes rightly said “love it or hate it influencer marketing works”. This year has been the year that some bloggers or “influencers” as they are sometimes called (although my personal bugbear is when someone introduces themselves as an influencer, bit odd) have really boosted the following and credibility of some brands. Whether that’s because they were able to open a brand up to a new network, or raise awareness about something to a younger generation, they’d really lead the crowd on lots of things. This is because as humans we really enjoy following other humans. This has been the year of the Personal *Vom* Brand, and it’s only going to get bigger and bigger in 2016.

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