Last year we predicted the Modern Marketing Trends of 2016. But times have changed; here are some marketing trends of 2017.

Chatbots and AI will become mainstream.

Chatbots and artificial intelligence aren’t exactly new, but their widespread adoption is. Chatbots will use AI to both learn from the users it speaks with and from sources around the web. We’re already seeing the start of chatbot and AI growth – with virtual assistants in both Apple and Google phones, on home devices like Amazon Echo, and branded chatbots on messaging apps. There are countless examples, and with both smart home technology and messaging app adoption on the rise, this trend is showing no sign of slowing down. Consider taking advantage of this trend by creating a chatbot for a messaging app like Facebook Messenger.

Likewise, so will AR.

Augmented reality is also making its way to center-stage. The popularity of Pokemon Go was greater than anyone anticipated. And from it came some valuable marketing lessons: (1) consumers are ready for AR and (2) it can make major money. Although it may be challenging to create successful AR ads or apps, they can benefit both the brand presence and the bottom line greatly, if successful.

Live video become increasingly common, too.

Live video was hot to talk about in 2015 and 2016, but this year demonstrated that the time for live video is truly here. During the 2016 presidential debates, for examples, millions of Americans viewed them live online, on social networks, news sites, and various other spaces. The exact figure is hard to define, but 5 million viewed the live stream on YouTube alone. Further, 35 million people looked at the debates live on just 7 major news outlet websites. If Netflix and Amazon Prime are any evidence, consumers are preferring their media online, and news and live events seem to be no exception.

Niche markets will be a necessity, instead of an advantage.

At one time, niche marketing was a strategic move, offering a product that appealed to a smaller segment, but one that could make good use of your product. As the ecommerce space gets more saturated, however, certain businesses will find themselves needing to find a niche out of necessity. Being too broad risks getting lost in the flood of competitors. Having a niche, however, will allow your business to differentiate itself.

Data, Visualized.

The collection and analyzation of data is a necessity for all businesses, however, the data can sometimes be hard to interpret. As a result, analyzation software, apps, and websites step in to help you make sense of all the information available to you. Data is better visualized and explained, and some services even offer suggestions. Over the next year, you’ll see data presented in more consumer-friendly ways.