2017 Digital Marketing Predictions From 24 Marketing Experts

We are at the end of another great year and if we take a quick look at 2016 we will find out a lot of great moments. 2016 was a great year with a lot of new features and tools that were launched by all the top social media networks like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat etc. From the LinkedIn acquisition by Microsoft in June for $26.2 billion to the Pokemon Go location-based augmented reality game madness, we had a pretty interesting and exciting year.

2017 will definitely be a better year for the social media marketing and digital marketing industry in general. I don’t think we will have some revolutionary and spectacular features or announcements in 2017, but there will be an evolution on all levels.

Because I’m curious to hear the 2017 digital marketing predictions from the top digital marketing experts, I’ve ask some of the most recognized social media marketing experts to tell our Hot in Social Media community what are their digital marketing predictions for 2017.

I want to say a big Thank You!… to all these social media experts who sent me their answers and bits of advice!

In the coming weeks, there will be 2 more articles with the top 3 social media networks recommendations for 2017 and another great and useful article that will show you the best advice from every one of these social media experts so… don’t forget to read our blog as often as possible.

27 Expert Opinions About The Top 3 Social Media Networks in 2017
29 Social Media Marketing Experts Share Their Best Advice

What digital marketing trends do you predict for 2017?

Jenn Herman

Founder of Jenn’s Trends and the World’s Forefront Blogger on Instagram Marketing


Jenn Herman is a social media consultant, speaker, and globally recognized Instagram expert. She is the forefront blogger on Instagram marketing and her blog, Jenn’s Trends, has won the title of a Top 10 Social Media Blog in 2014, 2015, and 2016. Through her blog, consulting, and speaking Jenn provides tips, resources, and training for small to medium-sized businesses that need to structure their social media strategies. Her business background includes Administration, Sales, Human Resources, and Marketing and she enjoys bringing all these skills together to help you grow your business. Jenn has been featured in Inc., Yahoo Finance, and numerous other podcasts and publications. She is the author of “The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Instagram” and “Stop Guessing: Your Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Social Media Strategy”.
I believe we’ll see a lot more in-app integration for social media in 2017. We’re already seeing Facebook and Instagram find ways to keep people more engaged in the social media app, rather than leaving to visit an external website. I think this trend will expand and continue as social media platforms and businesses find ways to encourage conversation, purchases, and conversions directly on social media.

Lee Odden


TopRank Marketing – www.toprankmarketing.com

Lee leads a team of top digital marketing consultants that help top B2B and consumer brands grow demand and revenue. Lee evangelizes an integrated approach to search, social, influence and content marketing at events around the world and on toprankblog.com.
Cognitive Marketing will get a lot of attention in 2017 as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing make repetitive and structured marketing tasks much easier to implement and manage.
Of course, mobile, interactive, personalization, video, private networks, SEO, social ads and influencer marketing will continue to be popular with marketers that have the budget to spend.

Ted Rubin

Social Marketing Strategist and Keynote Speaker


Ted is a leading Social Marketing Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Brand Evangelist and Acting CMO of Brand Innovators. Ted is the most followed CMO on Twitter according to Social Media Marketing Magazine; #13 on Forbes Top 50 Social Media Power Influencers and number #2 on the Leadtail list of Top 25 People Most Mentioned by digital marketers.

What I see being huge heading into 2017 is live streaming, and the ability to share all video in so much more ways, via more apps, with story-telling and engagement at the core. You need to try these platforms. You need to jump in. You need to see how you can tell stories, create narratives, build relationships, communicate with consumers, and create learning for your organization.
This is way more than just another content fad, but rather it’s online video crossing a crucial threshold… Do you want to know really why I think it’s gonna be huge? Not because I’m using it or Millennials and GenZ are using it… it’s because it’s making video social. Because they’re not just streaming what’s happening live. They’re allowing you to engage with those streams… you are now able to be a part of the conversation. #RonR… #NoLetUp!

Pam Didner

Content Marketing Expert /Author /Speaker


Pam Didner is a marketing consultant, author, and speaker, whose international book, “Global Content Marketing”, is the first to offer an accessible, comprehensive process to scale content across regions. During her tenure at Intel, she led enterprise product launches and worldwide marketing campaigns as a globally integrated marketing strategist. She now leads a boutique-consulting firm that trains, coaches and provides strategic guidance on audience development, messaging architecture, editorial planning, content creation and media outreach on a global scale.
With the trends of major e-commerce sites opening physical stores (Amazon, Warby Parker, Birchbox etc.), brands need to accelerate the integration of the online digital experience with that of the offline physical experience. The challenge is to seamlessly integrate the online and offline experience by leveraging and hiding complicated technologies from your customers.
Also, more and more data is collected through a brand’s digital marketing efforts. Brands and agencies can further personalize and customize offerings to their customers.

Ian Cleary



Ian is a marketing tech guy who founded RazorSocial and he helps companies take advantage of marketing tech to become more effective and efficient. He specializes in social media and content marketing.
In 2017 we’ll see a major push from Facebook for selling through Facebook and other providers will follow. There is no reason why people will not buy on social media channels if the social media channels create an environment for sales.
I think influencer marketing will see major growth. Building an audience is becoming harder and more expensive and then you can’t even reach the audience without paying. Finding influencers that have a relevant engaged audience that trusts them will work better for brands.
The focus will be on higher quality content and less on it but with more investment in repurposing and optimizing the sales funnel to convert.

Tim Hughes



Tim Hughes is a transformational leader, best-selling author, and top 10 Social Media Influencer. With a background in sales and sales management, Tim has been involved in Social Media for over 7 years, having built a following of Twitter of 150,000 and becoming a top 10 influencer. He is an international renown speaker, blogger, and writer.
Tim is the co-founder of Digital Leadership Associates, a company designed to help companies make a transformational move to embrace digital and social.
Customers will spend more time online researching products and services, avoiding salespeople. Customer buy cycles will continue to get longer and sales cycles will continue to get shorter. Customers will continue to ignore ads and expect brands to personalize interactions.

Jamie Turner

Internationally recognized author and Founder


Jamie is an internationally recognized author, speaker and the founder of 60SecondMarketer.com, a marketing blog read by tens of thousands of executives around the globe. He is a regular guest on CNN where he provides insights on branding, marketing, and business. He’s also been profiled in one of the world’s best-selling marketing textbooks.
There’s a major shift away from traditional marketing to a new technique called nonlinear marketing. Linear (traditional) marketing interrupts a consumer’s life with advertising that tries to sell them a product. Nonlinear marketing is when the brand develops content and experiences that become part of a consumer’s life. If you look at what Starbucks, Red Bull, and Lego are doing, you’ll understand what nonlinear marketing is — content and experiences that consumers digest and participate in without overtly being sold a product or service.

Adel de Meyer

New Media Specialist – Brand Ambassador – Author – Mentor


Adel de Meyer is listed as a Top Digital blog and Top 20 Social Media coach and has worked with many different brands some including Hootsuite, Pitney Bowes, Later, Brand24 and Huawei as a Brand Influencer and a Key Opinion Leader. Adel regularly writes articles on analytics, influencer marketing, technology and social media solutions. Adel’s experience got her listed globally as a Top Social Media and Tech influencer and her closely with global SMB enterprises, Entrepreneurs and Personal Brands by using Social Media and Technology to captivate their audiences. She loves coffee and creative minds!
Out with the tweets, in with the streams!?’ Live-streaming, 360 photos, real-time updates, it will all be about the experience users get from your updates. The video will continue to grow and some predict that 2017 will be the biggest year ever for video. Facebook will continue to be marketer’s choice for advertising but I think Instagram will start to shift some of the budgets. Live-streaming, stories (Instagram/Snapchat) and VR will be the ‘talk of the town’.


Mike Allton

Content Marketing Practitioner

The Social Media Hat – www.thesocialmediahat.com

Mike is a Content Marketing Practitioner, Blogger and Author in St. Louis, and the Chief Marketing Officer at SiteSell. He has been working with websites and the Internet since the early ’90’s and is active on all of the major social networks. Mike teaches a holistic approach to content marketing that leverages blog content, social media and SEO to drive traffic, generate leads, and convert those leads into sales.

2017 will see the continued increase in usage and prominence of video, particularly on Facebook. However, of more importance to mainstream users, we’ll see more stabilization of networks.
I correctly predicted that 2016 would see tremendous attrition in social networks. Blab, Meerkat, Tsu and others all faded away or pivoted. Even media darling Twitter is struggling and sought a buyer.

In the coming year, we’ll see more stability across the networks, resulting in greater ease of businesses to invest their time and money. But more importantly, we’ll also see more stabilization of features across networks (i.e. video) making their use more ubiquitous.

Lilach Bullock

Founder and Social Media Expert


Highly regarded on the world speaker circuit, Lilach has graced Forbes and Number 10 Downing Street. She’s a hugely connected and highly influential entrepreneur. Listed by Forbes as one of the top 20 women social media power influencers and was crowned the Social Influencer of Europe by Oracle and the number one Influencer of the UK by Career Experts. She is a recipient of a Global Women Champions Award for her outstanding contribution and leadership in business.
I think that the biggest digital marketing trend of 2017 will be video, video and more video. Live streaming has been in constant and very rapid growth this year, in large part due to Facebook, but businesses haven’t made full use of it as of yet. 2017, though, will be different – businesses are starting to understand the power of video, both produced and streamed live, so I think that they will be investing a lot more in this form of content in order to stand out.

Brian Fanzo

Millennial Speaker & Founder of iSocialFanz


Brian Fanzo Talks Fast & Tweets Faster, Is a Translator of GeekSpeak and a self-proclaimed Change Evangelist, that also happens to be a pager-wearing millennial known by most as iSocialFanz. Brian is a Millennial Keynote speaker that spoke at more than 50 events in 10 countries in 2016 and also hosts two podcasts: S.M.A.C.Talk & FomoFanz.
I predict live video will continue to be a trend that grows as more brands start to embrace live video outside of marketing departments for HR, recruiting and partner relationships.


Natascha Thomson


MarketingXLerator – www.marketingxlerator.com

Natascha’s motto is “Give a man a fish and he won’t starve for a day. Teach a man how to fish and he won’t starve for his entire life.” As the CEO of the boutique social media marketing consultancy MarketingXLerator, she brings over 20 years of experience at startups and large enterprises to the table. She’s also a published author and teaches social media at UCSC Silicon Valley.
Nothing new or exciting just a deepening of what’s already been evolving: more data-driven marketing. As technologies advance and vendors consolidate, it will become more accessible to many to create closed-loop marketing tracking, analyze data in a way that makes it very actionable, and then target audiences in a very personalized way. Things like retargeting, custom audiences and the combination of online and off-line will become ubiquitous.
Also, we will see the IoT penetrate much more areas of our lives, and hence, marketers will use the data they can now collect for more data-driven marketing (and product improvements).
Last but not least, we’ll start to see big changes in how we need to approach SEO. Google is moving into using AI to improve our search experience. This will affect how we as marketers operate to appear in search results. As voice search is taking hold, this will be another huge factor to impact how we conduct SEO.
Overall, an exciting year ahead.

Keri Jaehnig

Founder & CMO at Idea Girl Media – Social Business Faculty Chair at Simplilearn


Keri Jaehnig is the Founder and CMO of Idea Girl Media, an international Social Media Marketing Agency that works with business brands, public figures & select non-profits, providing customized marketing campaigns and social media training. Now the Social Business Faculty Chair at Simplilearn, I am humbled to have received a 2013 Small Business Influencer Honorable Mention Award, and a commendation for Outstanding Attainment in Social Media from the Senate of the State of Ohio. My insight has also been featured in Social Media Today, SteamFeed, Search Engine People, and AOL Small Business, as well as Forbes and Business Insider. Non-fat lattes, travel & quick wit make me smile, and I am always enthused to meet new people!
There was a time where quantity sometimes earned greater traction than fewer quality posts on social media. As social media has evolved in the past few months to a year, quality over quantity is the way to go. Also, we can no longer be stubborn – successful online marketers will use social ads. The good news is that video ads are seeing excellent results, and video is super social! LIVE video will continue to become more popular, Instagram has even flexed to offer this feature via Stories.

Gini Dietrich

CEO of Arment Dietrich and author of Spin Sucks


Gini is the CEO and founder of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.
1.Measurement: In today’s digital era, measurement is becoming increasingly important. So much so, those who have figured out how and what to measure effectively outshine their competitors. In 2017, the digital marketer MUST move beyond vanity metrics and measure that which drives real business results. The data is out there. You just have to find it and use it.
2. Artificial intelligence: A few years ago, I was introduced to Narrative Science, a company in my hometown of Chicago that ”writes” stories for publications using robots. At the time, I was appalled. After all, I’m a writer, author, blogger. The idea that I could so very easily be replaced is scary. Because it scared me so much, I wanted to dig in and better understand what they do. It turns out, they can write stories about things such as earnings reports and Little League baseball games—stories where the stats are more important than storytelling. That made me feel a bit better. And now I’m obsessed with artificial intelligence and how it might affect the role of the digital marketer in the next five to 10 years. While it won’t change the role of the digital marketer in 2017, it is something we all need to be aware of and plan to embrace. It’s coming and we can’t stop it!
3. Professional development: For several years now, digital marketing has been operating in the wild, wild west. But it’s time to grow up and do things differently and with more sophistication. To do that, we need to learn how to measure effectively, how to implement new trends, and how to figure out how AI and virtual reality and video all affect our roles. The best way to do that is through our own professional development, which is plentiful on the web. You can do everything from reading blogs and teaching yourself to take online courses or buying and reading books.

JacobkCurtisJacob Curtis

Account Manager


An experienced new media marketer and personal branding advocate, I work with both companies and individuals in developing, maintaining and leveraging their digital identity online. Connect with me on Twitter or view my social media video tutorials on jacobcurtis.com.
I predict more businesses will utilize Live Streaming Video to connect and engage with their customers in 2017. We’ll also see a rise in automated messaging bots that will assist social media managers in fielding and responding to commonly asked questions. The most popular social networks will also continue focusing on creating native content or contracting content creators to produce network-specific content to keep more users on their site.
And speaking of automation, the difference between a relaxed social media manager and a stressed-out one can be as simple as them using a good social media management tool that can help with automating post scheduling and communication with commenters. Check out our social media comparison tool with in-depth reviews if you want to be in the former category.

Stephanie Nelson

SEO & Social Media Maven

SBN Marketing – www.sbnmktg.com

Stephanie Boyette Nelson is the owner and SEO/Social Media Maven at SBN Marketing, a Charlotte-NC-based boutique digital marketing agency. Stephanie’s marketing experience runs the gamut – print ads, print newsletters, event coordination, e-mail newsletters, paid search, SEO, and more. Currently, SBN Marketing specializes in social media marketing, content marketing, and on-page SEO for small businesses.
I predict social media will become even more visual. Text-only posts will fall more out of fashion, and images and videos will continue to gain popularity and audience engagement.
It will also be interesting to see what effects if any, Google’s upcoming SEO changes will have on social media marketing. It was announced earlier in the year that effective January 10th, 2017, websites with pop-up ads will have their rankings affected (read: lowered) by Google’s algorithm. Folks that have used pop-ups to sell their own goods will need to make up the incremental income from those sales; folks that sold pop-ups on their sites to sell others’ good will need to make up that ad income. I see a potential for that to come in the form of sponsored social media posts on pretty much any social media outlet, as long as the targeting/audience and tracking/reporting are there.

Ingrid Kibler

Director of Social Media at HCK2 Partners

HCK2 Partners – www.ingridkibler.com

Ingrid’s passion is to help clients harness the power of social media for their business. From presenting innovative ideas to devising a winning strategy to staying in-the-know of the latest, my job is to help clients utilize this technology in surpassing their business goals and keep them ahead of the competition. Ingrid’s been honored with several awards in the social media industry and speaks regularly at social media conferences across the country. But for her, it’s not a job. It’s a privilege.
Employees will play an even bigger role in being ambassadors for their brands online. Keep an eye on initiatives such as employee advocacy programs and tools to utilize them for your business.

Britt Michaelian

Author, Artist, Producer


Britt is a writer, producer, and entrepreneur She likes the excitement and creativity that comes with working on new projects. In addition to consulting for tech companies and television networks in the areas of social strategy and implementation, Britt has appeared on the red carpet as a social media correspondent for the Insider and Entertainment Tonight at events for Vanity Fair, the Daytime Emmys, and the Billboard Awards.
The noise continues to get louder online, so digital marketers will need to get creative with offline integrations if they want to build lasting relationships. Consumers are moving away from platforms like Facebook for a variety of reasons, so brands (especially those looking to reach younger demographics) will reduce their ad spend and content creation on this platform. Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube will continue to dominate, but again the offline branded experience integrations will be increasingly effective.

Stuart Davidson

Marketing Manager at CityDocs and Blogger


Top 40 Social Media Influencer by Onalytica. Top 40 Twitter influencer by BrandWatch. Featured and quoted by many leading marketing magazines, websites, and blogs. “In boxing, styles make fights. In blogging, styles make readership” – Stuart Davidson
I think marketing budgets will continue to move away from paid advertising methods and more towards inbound marketing activities. As the understanding, technology, and technique of content marketing continue to develop, ROI will become easier to evaluate an attribute.

Jenifer Kramer


Jenerosity Marketing LLC – www.jenerositymarketing.com

With 20+ years in the licensing, promotions and entertainment business, Jen Kramer has worked with some of the largest companies in the world. From Hearst Magazines to TibECo, she has worked in virtually every category from toys and publishing to housewares and grocery. Jen has a complete understanding of toy manufacturing due to many years at Avon and PPW developing innovative playthings for all ages. Just prior to launching her own business, Ms. Kramer honed her digital skills at social engagement company, true[X] media which was later acquired by 21 st Century Fox.
I think that the various social media platforms are going to continue to become more and more alike. Soon we won’t be able to differentiate between them all and the “winners” will be the ones with the biggest audience and the highest engagement. I also think that content will continue to be king as platforms look to increase the amount of high-quality content that they are feeding their audience. Last, I think slowly we are going to see an increase in m-commerce as platforms integrate 360-degree views and VR/AR to make trying things on easier, as well as simplifying the purchasing process itself.

Andrew Hutchinson

Content and Social Media Manager at Social Media Today


Andrew Hutchinson is the Content and Social Media Manager at Social Media Today
Niche focus is going to become a more important element for brands in 2017. Traditionally, broadcasting as far and wide as possible has been the key to marketing success – and broadcasting is still relevant in the modern outreach process. But the ability to hone in on very specific audiences on social, with hyper-targeted messaging, means that it’s often more effective to narrow down your approach, crafting your message to appeal to smaller interest groups and on a unique behavior.
The ability to tap into social media data to refine your targeting is really only just starting to catch on, and as we move forward, you’re going to see more brands utilizing this to greater effect. When you segment your audience, you can now also narrow down their specific behaviors, and the relevance of your products to those smaller groups. Creating messages that appeal to fewer people, but relate more closely to hear individual experiences, can be a much more effective tactic.

Reginald_ChanReginald Chan

Social Media Influencer


Bold by nature, I strongly believe in helping companies with their marketing challenges. With over a decade of experience in the digital world, I’ve help brands and businesses to reach new heights and triple their revenue through the power of digital marketing.
Short-form videos are going to dominate the market as well as marketing specifically on mobile. Brands are going to start using mobile applications for marketing, as what China has been doing with WeChat for the past 3 years. Also, the focus on location-bound marketing is going to skyrocket for local businesses.

Nigel Ohrum

Content Marketing Strategist

Good Reads in Social Media & Content Marketing Google+ Collection

DARC: Digital native with Analytical chops, strong web Reach, and Content creation skills. I also help individuals, businesses, and organizations to build web presence through social media. I speak on the value of web presence / social media and serve as a mentor for veteran business owners seeking advice and guidance in using social media.
Personalized “QUALITY” content marketing. There’s a lot of content already out there and that’s only going to increase in 2017. The problem is most businesses still don’t have a documented content strategy and as a result, are spewing “CRAP” ad nauseam onto the web. The other thing digital marketers should pay more attention to in 2017 is the personalization of messaging. A relevant personalized message is much more likely to attract attention. “The right message to the right audience at the right time.” Words for digital marketers to live by.

MarjiJShermanMarji J. Sherman


Sherman Social – www.marjijsherman.com

Marji J. Sherman is an experienced social media strategist that has been featured in Inc. Magazine, Jay Baer’s SocialPros podcast, The Growth Factor and numerous other podcasts and publications. She writes a successful blog (www.MarjiJSherman.com) where she relates real-life experiences to the ever-changing landscape of social media and has over 180K followers on Twitter (@MarjiJSherman) where she focuses on positive living and leveraging social media while still remaining authentic.
Employee advocacy is going to be one of the largest trends of 2017. Companies are realizing the value of their employees’ voices, and how they can be a resourceful way to raise brand awareness and increase peer-to-peer recommendations. It will especially be a great way for brands that are having their budgets cut to tap into content that already exists through their employees.


Vladimir Gendelman

Founder & CEO

Company Folders, Inc. – www.companyfolders.com

Vladimir Gendelman is the founder and CEO of CompanyFolders, an innovative presentation folder company that has won multiple awards, including ranking in Inc. 5000’s list of fastest-growing private companies in America in 2015 and 2016. He is a thought leader in the print design and has published numerous articles including such publications as Forbes and Times.
I think email will play a larger role as one of the digital market trends of 2017. It allows a level of control that social media doesn’t. Large companies can project larger amounts of content aimed in a specific direction compared to social media where followers can create rabbit trail conversations that distract from the content. In addition, companies will spend more time on blog posts on hosting communities to expand their audiences without depending only on social media.