When it comes to marketing, one of the ways to stay ahead of your competitors and make more sales is to keep updated with the industry trends.
But before we dive into the five ways to help you stay up to date with the latest trends, there is one crucial thing you need to do first: knowing your target market like the back of your hand.
The First Step Is Identifying Your Target Market
If you want your marketing strategies to be successful, you first need to identify your target market. This is a niche of local people who are most likely to patronize your products and services.
The next thing you need to do is to understand their needs and wants. You can do this with market research, which gives an overview of their vital marketing data. This often details the customers’ demographic info, like age, sex, career, and income level.
With market research, you can identify their needs, interests, and even their pain points. This also gives you a bird’s eye view of their digital activity, mainly the social media venues they use. That way, you can find them right away.
Market research is of great value to every company since it can help businesses shape a better marketing campaign.
Once you’ve identified and understood your target market, you’ll also know the news and trends that would be of interest to them. You can now monitor these trends while keeping them in mind.
How to Stay On Top of the Latest Industry Trends
It’s so easy to get overwhelmed with information these days, but you can still stay in the loop and deliver the most relevant trends to your customers with the following tips:
Parse Through Trade Journals
A great way to keep up to date with industry trends is to read trade journals religiously. Apart from offering professional insight, they can feed you with news articles and other relevant content to your business.
While you could opt for hard copies, you can access digital magazines by searching them up on Google.
To be constantly updated with the newest trends, you should subscribe to at least five trade publications within your industry.
Learn Something New By Joining Relevant Industry Associations
Joining an industry association is another way to stay up to date with the latest happenings.
Being a member is not only good for your LinkedIn business page; it’s sure to keep you abreast with the latest industry trends as well. The joining fee is also very cheap, if not free!
An industry membership could also help you brainstorm new ideas, especially when you:
- Attend trade shows, conferences, and other related events
- Interact with vendors to learn more about who’s consuming their products
- Network with other businesses for more opportunities
Like journals, you can search Google to learn more about these associations. Remember to check their sites to see if they’re indeed legitimate organizations.
Stay on Top of the Trends With Industry Chit-Chat
Don’t know where to find your customers online? You can stay up to date if you listen to the industry chatter.
To gain this valuable insight, you need to search the digital places where they comment, share their posts, spill secrets, or tell stories.
Depending on the customers you’re looking for, you may find them on blogs or social media platforms like Reddit, Twitter, and Facebook. You may even find a few on the traditional mailing list.
Keeping up to date with this info may be troublesome, but you can cut the work by using tools like Spark Toro and Facebook Insights to find these groups.
Search Related Blogs for the Newest Industry Trends
Listening to industry chit-chat has many benefits. For one, it can help you identify industry-related blogs.
Compared to a business website, blogs provide a more human perspective. This makes it a great way to learn more about your target market and how you may address their issues or concerns.
While it’s easy to find industry blogs online, you need to be careful before you click subscribe. You’re sure to get fresh marketing trends by choosing a website with:
- A high domain score
- Engaging and regularly published content
- Social media sharing options
Listen to Industry Podcasts for the Newest Trends
If you don’t have time to read an article, you can always subscribe to an interesting niche podcast.
Not only is this a great way to feed on digital news, but it’s also media you can consume every day, wherever you may be. You can quickly delve into your favorite podcast content, whether you’re exercising in the gym or driving home.
Compared to, say, a news magazine, podcasts feature both sides — that of the owner and the customer. Since you get to hear both parties, you’ll get a comprehensive world view of your industry.
Being updated with the newest business trend or idea can do wonders for your business venture. As such, you should make it a point to follow the five tips above.