Promotional Marketing Predictions for 2017


Every year at this time we discuss what the next big thing will be. Sometimes we can see it coming, and sometimes we don’t.  So how did we do for this past year’s marketing predictions? Here they are so you can see!

2016 Prediction #1: Native ads will be booming – and promotions are part of that mix.

Results: Native ads did turn out to be big news this year, especially because the FTC started to enforce native ad guidelines and brands became more aware of what disclosure was required. Some brands learned the hard way that disclosure is required or a price may have to be paid.

2016 Prediction #2: Snapchat will (finally) become the social platform of choice for sweeps and contests.

Results: Snapchat had extremely high growth this year, growing from 110 to 150 million daily active users from December to June 2016. But while use of targeted geofilters and Discovery ads by brands grew, actual promotions were still not part of the mix. The nature of the platform demands that brands be very creative to execute a sweepstakes or contest so they have not taken off yet.

2016 Prediction #3: Data security will finally become the big deal it should be.

Results: In late 2015 a court in the EU declared the US Safe Harbor data framework invalid for the transfer of EU data to the US. This led to a new framework for data requirements called Privacy Shield – which Marden-Kane was the first promotional marketing company to be listed under in August of 2016. Data privacy and security is now a hot topic for all promotions and MK is at the forefront of it. 

2016 Prediction #4: Location based promotions will be the new rage.

Results: Pokemon Go launched in 2016. The location based app took the world by storm over the summer and grosses hundreds of thousands of dollars a day.  While the geo-based promotions we foresaw didn’t happen yet, the growth of location based games, apps, filters and targeting services fueled by the success of Pokemon Go practically ensures that it’s just a matter of time.


So what’s next? Let’s consult Zoltar and his magic crystal ball….

2016 Marketing predictions for the future

For 2017 here is what we predict:

  1. Social sweepstakes and contests will become the primary method of entry over online web forms.

Social sweeps and contests using a hashtag (or a comment on Facebook) are faster to deploy and less expensive to execute. MK predicts that in 2017 brands will prefer to run their promotions on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter over building traditional sweepstakes or contest web sites. MK has a Social Tracker tool that can easily and cost effectively run a social sweepstakes or contest for your brands, and we have already seen a surge in this type of promotions since our tool was launched. (Contact us for more information and costs associated with running a social promotion for your brand.)

  1. Native ads will continue to evolve, and regulation will play a hand in that.

The FTC is said to be cracking down even harder on brands that don’t properly disclose the nature of a native ad. As this regulation gets to be the norm, expect brands to be much more careful with paid ad placements and endorsements. MK has stayed abreast of native ad guidance and can help you avoid fines or enforcement action that could harm your company. Let us know if you have questions on your next campaign.

  1. Facebook and Instagram will crack down on fake accounts and fraud.

Fake news, fake accounts, fake votes – these are all very big problems for Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. In 2017, after an intense scrutiny of real vs fake news sites, you can expect Facebook especially to shut down fake accounts or people. This scrutiny should impact those committing fraud by soliciting paid votes or shares that are against contest rules. (If you need fraud protections while waiting for this to happen, contact us. We have a host of fraud prevention techniques that ensure cheating is not allowed on the promotions we develop.)

  1. Virtual reality and location based marketing will continue to evolve and be used in more event based marketing.

Look for the next evolution of geo-location apps and games. Loyalty points and rewards could be a check-in away once brands start integrating with games like Pokemon Go.


What predictions do you have for next year? Let us know by commenting below! Or if you are interested in working with us to be on the cutting edge in 2017, request a meeting with us. We can get your promotional marketing plan ready for 2017.

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