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In Part 1 of this year’s annual marketing predictions, we hear from a selection of leading marketers from across the region on what areas they feel will dominate your company’s marketing activities. From Brexit to influencers, data to UX and CRM to algorithms, it looks like 2019 will have it all! Let us know your thoughts and get in touch if you’d like to contribute or join in on social media with #marketing2019

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Tim Hutchinson, who has been producing innovative platforms for over 20 years in a range of sectors, sees the political challenges of 2019 having a significant impact:

'Brexit, there I’ve said it! I really didn’t want to but it is one of the single biggest events on the horizon which could significantly change confidence in the marketplace. And of course, this is going to have an impact on how and where businesses place their marketing budget. However, it’s not just politics that is going to continue affecting our attitude towards marketing. Social, economic and technological shifts are all going to be drivers that influence what brands and businesses do in 2019. This is creating uncertainty in how we (as agencies and consultants) build our teams and plan for the future, particularly if your team needs to be more reactive to ad-hoc client requests and needs. In the past year, I have found that I have been asking my team to be a bit more t-shaped in their thinking. UX designers are working much more collaboratively with strategists, whilst UI designers are flexing their muscles across UX, motion design and brand. Project managers have also been using this as an opportunity to upweight their expertise by thinking more ‘product’ and ‘human-centric’, and working much more closely with UX designers to solve problems. As a result, we are creating a team of multi-disciplined ’experience designers’ that can apply their thinking and skills to many more scenarios across digital, physical and service-led projects.'

Finally, Matt Holmes, a specialist in online marketing acquisition reminds us of how prevalent AI is on our lives and the influence it will have on marketing activities in 2019:

‘From the algorithm that puts together your personalised Spotify playlists to the quick replies in your Gmail - most consumers and digital marketers interact with artificial intelligence or machine learning on a daily basis; whether they realise it or not. It used to be that you needed a legion of data scientists and a pile of cash to get involved - but as we roll into 2019, AI-driven insight is closer than ever to normal businesses. Imagine a world where instead of spending weeks working on forecasts for your brand or your clients, you input your historical data and some key related data like holidays into a web platform which spits out a customised forecast that’s 50% more accurate than what you’d done before. What if I told you that you can do this today, on a pay-as-you-go basis with Amazon Web Services and the Time Series Forecasting product they just soft-launched? forward-thinking. With Amazon leading the democratisation of AI and companies like Peak.ai offering subscription-based AI and data science as a service, my prediction for 2019 is that the barrier to entry for most digital marketers will disappear. More brands and agencies will experiment with AI-driven tools for personalisation, lead scoring, forecasting and customer segmentation in 2019 - starting a real change in how we work and how we add value to our business and our customers’

Thanks to all our contributors for Part 1, we hope you all have a successful and prosperous 2019!

Click here to our read our Marketing Predictions Part 2. 

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