Top Digital Marketing Trends in 2021
2020 was marked by many technological disruptions as the coronavirus ravaged the planet and unsettled the status quo. This disruption affected people as well as businesses. Businesses found themselves swimming in the deep end with clients stuck at home due to work or lockdowns. Old digital marketing strategies no longer work, and I know that I have to go back to the drawing board as a business owner if I want to thrive in this new normal. For extra help in this area, there are businesses such as Epsilon that can help with digital marketing strategies within this new era, so I am luckily not at a loss if I need help. So here are some of the trends that I know will be relevant to my business.
In 2021, my engagement with customers will change from a physical engagement to a virtual engagement. That means that I need to maximize my social media engagements with my clients since I may not be able to meet them physically. Having an e-commerce shop has become a must for my business because it will reduce the barriers to making purchases.
In 2021 social media will not just be a marketing tool but a selling tool. In fact, a study by Sprout Social showed that close to 50% of all Instagram users bought one or more products that were viewed in a sponsored IG post. Social media will become integral to e-commerce sales, and social media sites like Facebook are making it easier for clients to purchase directly without leaving the platform. This is bound to increase in 2021, and maybe at one point, I will be able to run an e-commerce shop entirely on social media.
Personalization was a competitive advantage in 2020, but in 2021, personal commerce is the new advantage. These days consumers are more aware and want to co-curate their expectations with brands that match those needs. This means that my customers expect me to know what they bought before and suggest to them items I think they might need based on the data I have from them. Thus, I need to leverage analytics so that I can not only meet client needs but also advise them on what they need to buy, and when they need to buy. This is the only way my business will remain ahead of the competition.
Virtual events became a must for companies due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, there will be more virtual events from now on because of safety concerns and because businesses learned new lessons about digital marketing. By going virtual, I found out that I attracted a new audience with a higher attendance than even a physical event. Furthermore, virtual events are easy to organize because I do not have to sort through issues like travel restrictions, visa issues, and travel costs. Virtual events also have a higher attendance rate and I spend less money while getting more engagement.
Social media channels have become so many. It is difficult for me to stay relevant on each channel, so I am going to declutter some of them. I will focus on only the most relevant channels.
Companies have discovered the power of virtual engagements. However, most of them, mine included, make the mistake of making the engagements one-way communications. Another mistake I made was to just broadcast the events instead of having live events. I know live events have some complications, but customers still want to interact with their brands. There is some risk associated with live events, but I believe the benefit outweighs the risks, and if you decide to look at how promotional event marketing can give your event a boost (when it’s safe to do so), could also prove to be pivotal to your success.
More and more people prefer to use voice searches instead of typing on their desktops or smartphones. SEO searches yield different results compared to text searches and many businesses outsource companies like South Lakes SEO in order to get the best marketing results. A study by HubSpot showed that 39% of all people in that study had used the voice assistant on their phones. To tap into this trend, I need to optimize my content for voice searches by creating direct and conversational content. Such content will accurately sync with voice searches and will increase traffic to my website.
One thing that 2020 has shown me as a business owner is that technological disruptions are inevitable. Therefore, I have to embrace the above digital marketing strategies for my business to succeed.