If you’re trying to make your mark in the Japanese market, then look no further than digital marketing. In a country where technology and innovation are highly valued, businesses need to adapt and stay on top of the latest digital marketing trends to remain competitive. Whether you're a small local business or a multinational corporation, reaching out to Japanese consumers through effective marketing strategies is crucial to your success.
Did you know that nearly half of all Japanese internet users, 47.8% to be exact, visit a brand's website before making a purchase? And that a whopping 45.8% of them research brands online before reaching for their wallets? These impressive figures speak volumes about the importance of digital presence for businesses in this country.
With a highly developed economy, Japan is a prime market for businesses looking to expand their reach and grow their customer base. In this article, we'll be exploring the top digital marketing trends to watch in Japan in 2023. So, buckle up and get ready to learn how to take your business to the next level in Japan!
Top Japan Digital Marketing Trends in 2023 ⬇️
Trend 1: The Era of Digital Dominance in Japan
Did you know that in Japan, people now spend almost twice as much time online as watching TV? It's clear that digital consumption dominates in the Land of the Rising Sun, and businesses that want to reach Japanese consumers must adapt accordingly.
Before the pandemic, Japan had been lagging behind somewhat in the area of digital transformation. But when the coronavirus hit in 2020 and more and more people started working from home and shopping online, the country quickly caught up with the rest of the world. These past couple of years have seen Japan gearing towards improvements in its B2B and B2C marketing, with digital marketing taking center stage.
The shift towards digital has been so significant that in 2020, digital ad spend surpassed TV for the first time in Japan. This was a major moment for the industry in Japan and a momentous occasion for digital marketing as a whole. In 2023, this trend continues upwards, with Japan’s digital ad spend reaching $51.75 billion USD.
But what does all this mean for businesses looking to capture the attention of Japanese consumers? It means that digital marketing is more important than ever. From search engine optimization to social media marketing, and content creation to email marketing, there are many tools and techniques that businesses can use to capture the attention of the Japanese audience and drive conversions.
Trend 2: Video Marketing’s Take Over in Japan
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video is worth a million! Video marketing is taking over the digital marketing world, and Japan is no exception. In fact, video ad spending in Japan is projected to reach a whopping 5.63 billion USD in 2023, and up to 8.38 billion USD by 2027.
Why is video marketing becoming so important? For starters, it's a powerful way to connect with audiences on an emotional level, and build brand awareness and loyalty. By creating engaging video content, businesses can tell their brand story, showcase their products or services, and inspire action in a way that text or images simply can't.
In addition, the rise of video streaming platforms like YouTube, TikTok, and LINE TV in Japan has made it easier than ever for businesses to reach audiences with their video content. With over 78.4 million YouTube users in Japan, it's clear that video marketing has immense potential for businesses of all sizes and industries.
Trend 3: The Power of Japanese Social Media Influencers
If you're still skeptical about the power of influencer marketing, it's time to change your mindset. In Japan, the influencer market exceeded $200 million in 2018, and it's predicted to exceed $500 million by 2023. That's a lot of money invested in the power of influencers.
Why is influencer marketing becoming so important in Japan? For starters, it's a way for brands to reach their target audience through trusted and respected sources. By collaborating with influencers who have a loyal following, businesses can leverage their influence to build brand awareness, drive traffic, and boost sales.
Take YSL Beauty, for example. The luxury beauty brand has been collaborating with famous Japanese lifestyle and beauty icons like Rola, who has over 8.5 million followers on Instagram alone. By partnering with Rola, YSL Beauty was able to showcase its products to a wider audience and tap into Rola's loyal fan base.
But to succeed in influencer marketing, businesses need to find the right influencers who align with their brand values and have an engaged following. The days of just focusing on follower count are over, and businesses need to look for influencers who have a strong connection with their audience, and whose values align with their own.
Trend 4: Yahoo and Google’s Battle for Supremacy
If you're considering expanding your business in Japan, you need to know about the digital marketing trends that will be dominating the scene in 2023. And one of the key battles you should be watching closely is between Yahoo and Google.
For years, Google has been the clear winner when it comes to search engine dominance, but it seems that Yahoo has been gaining ground. According to recent data, Google's monthly average unique visitors in Japan is at 115 million, while Yahoo comes in second with 87.5 million. This puts Yahoo in a much stronger position compared to other countries, where Google has a much larger market share.
This close fight between Yahoo and Google is crucial for your digital marketing strategy in Japan. Depending on your target audience and your marketing goals, you'll want to make sure you're leveraging the right platform to reach your potential customers. Yahoo, for example, might be a better choice if you're targeting an older demographic or focusing on e-commerce, as it offers a more tailored shopping experience. On the other hand, Google might be more effective if you're targeting a younger audience or looking to expand brand awareness.
So, make sure you keep a close eye on this Yahoo vs. Google battle in 2023, and be strategic in your choice of platform.
Trend 5: Virtual Events as Japan’s New Normal
The past couple of years have been challenging for businesses as physical events and gatherings came to a halt. But what seemed like a hindrance has turned into a blessing in disguise. In Japan, virtual events have become a hot trend, allowing businesses to achieve their key performance indicators (KPIs) despite the economic uncertainty caused by the pandemic. Not only that, but virtual events have eliminated the need for logistical nightmares, like traveling, setting up booths, and other expenses that come with physical events.
One example of how virtual events are making their mark is through the use of virtual reality spaces like the one in Osaka. This city is famous for its breathtaking architecture, and visitors can now experience the town's rich history and culture through a virtual reality model. And it's not just sightseeing; events like the "Virtual Market 2022 Summer," modeled on VR, have been held in Osaka and New York, showing the huge potential of virtual events in the near future.
Virtual events have proven to be an effective tool for businesses to enhance their digital marketing efforts in Japan. They provide opportunities to showcase products and services, generate leads, and engage with customers and prospects in a cost-effective way. With the rise of virtual events, businesses can also explore collaborating with Japanese virtual influencers, which is also a rising trend in the industry.
As a result, we expect to see an increasing number of Japanese businesses incorporating virtual events as a key component of their digital marketing strategies in 2023 and beyond.
Digital marketing trends in Japan are constantly evolving and staying up-to-date with these trends is critical to success.
As we have discussed, digital consumption has dominated and will continue to do so in the future. Video marketing and influencer marketing have both shown to be effective strategies to capture the attention of Japanese audiences. Meanwhile, Yahoo and Google are in a tight battle for dominance in the search engine space, and virtual events have become a creative and cost-effective alternative to traditional in-person events.
By keeping an eye on these trends, businesses can stay ahead of the curve and thrive in the competitive Japanese market.
AJ Marketing | Unlock the Power of Influence