As 2020 was defined by the widespread global public health crisis of Covid19, the impacts on the global economy have been widely felt. While many industries made creditable come-backs from the crippling impacts of the crisis, there have been longer-lasting – potentially permanent – changes in how we market brands, interact with our customers and conduct business.
Given the experiences of the significant digital marketing shifts of last year, here are some of the top digital marketing strategies to prioritize this 2021.
- Due to global lockdowns and people being asked to stay indoors, there is an ongoing and massive demand for digital consumption.
- The marketing trends that will dominate 2021 will include Customer Experience, Employee Engagement, and Content Visualization.
- The definition of what we think about as “Digital Marketing” is constantly changing and becoming much wider.
- Marketing has moved beyond branding and advertising; marketers must now work harder to focus on building great customer experiences and engaging them for longer-term relationships.
- Digital marketing has played a critical role in helping businesses innovate to handle the impacts of the crisis and will continue to take the lead.
Content marketing will be more important than ever with most marketers planning on increasing their investment in content marketing in 2021. Since there is less exposure through other traditional means, it’s an ideal medium for promoting a brand, a product or to create awareness.
Content marketing will focus more on inclusivity that covers a wide spectrum of races, genders, religions, and people. There also be a move to content that emphasizes ecology and brands would benefit from highlighting their eco-friendly practices.
Video is also the most popular way for consumers to learn about new products and services. Video content has overtaken blogs and infographics as the most utilized format in content marketing and it has improved customer engagement and the user experience. Data indicates the positive impact of videos on increasing traffic to the website, customer engagement, and increased sales.
Interactive content plays a crucial role in user engagement and is now identified as a best practice. It not only boosts more engagement and a better user experience but also inspires users to spend more time on a website and increases ranking on search engines.
As more people spend time at home and online, they are spending more time on social media which means more time for engagement with businesses, products, and services. The Covid19 pandemic has significantly increased the amount of time people spend online which includes how they research products, brands, and organizations.
Social media budgets accounted for 24% of marketing budgets during the second quarter of 2020, up from 13% last winter and this trend is expected to continue growing in 2021.
There is a continuing trend of more marketers concentrating on customer retention through social media marketing which generates a lot of opportunities to engage with new audiences and re-engage with existing customers.
SEO-Search Engine Optimization will be as important as ever, and, like always, search algorithms will continue to evolve, keeping marketing teams on their toes. This year will be no different, but the focus will shift from just getting listings on the first page to SEO visibility in position zero. So, what is position zero? Position zero refers to Google’s featured snippet that is separated with a small box at the top of the search results. It also has more relevant information that answers the user’s question without them having to click on it.
Now, this may sound counter-intuitive because it does not take visitors to the site, but it goes a long way in giving the business recognition as an authority in the field, which may be worth more than a single site visit. For this reason, many SEO marketers are prioritizing this strategy.
And SEO will no longer only be about what users search for, but also how they search. With semantic search, search engines don’t only use keywords, but also the context, meaning, and intent to deliver search results to users. More businesses will focus on creating people optimized content that answers questions. In other words, content that’s natural and answers questions searchers have will rank higher in search results.
Another SEO strategy that is gaining traction is the image and video SEO. As more users are discovering that they can search with images, more marketers are optimizing their image and video SEO.
Pay Per Click Advertising
Due to reduced economic activity in 2020, many businesses reduced their marketing budgets and have scaled-down their digital marketing and advertising budgets. This reduced competition for ads led to steep cost per click (CPC) cost decreases. While people are confined to their homes (and screens) during the pandemic, traffic and search volume have been way up, so those taking advantage of these low CPC rates have benefitted from a much higher ROI than prior to the pandemic.
While PPC (pay-per-click) advertising and online advertising competition remains lower than prior to the crisis, taking advantage of integrated PPC as a key component of the digital marketing strategy, offers an ideal – and extremely affordable- opportunity to gain brand exposure, traffic, leads, and sales.
In 2021 businesses will continue to take advantage of some excellent low-cost marketing opportunities so it is the perfect time to get more competitive online.
According to HubSpot, about 80% of marketers report that they have seen an increase in email engagement in the past year. Email has long been one of the pillars of effective marketing strategies, and we expect that its popularity will continue to increase, especially when one considers that email marketing has had the highest return on investment for small businesses.
Add to that that global email users will grow to 4.48 billion users by 2024, and it’s easy to see why many businesses will not only continue to expand their efforts but would allocate more budget for email marketing.
In a customer-centric market, areas of expanded investment will be on personalization strategies that increase engagement with both new customers and existing customers and email marketing automation that makes personalized campaigns easier to implement and manage.
We witnessed the biggest shake-up in the marketing industry during 2020 as a result of the Covid19. Marketers must deliver on leads/sales/marketing targets while working with smaller budgets. This requires innovation and trying new means in 2021.
While marketing trends come and go, the fundamentals of marketing success continue to be the same: understand your target audience and their interests and communicate with them clearly and consistently on their method of choice. That is why customer-focused content will continue to be the best way to establish solid relationships with your audience.
At Maxeemize, we offer a full range of digital marketing services and will ensure that your marketing investments are maximized for the best ROI. We have the expertise, knowledge, experience, as well as creativity, to deliver unique solutions that produce results for your digital marketing strategy! Contact Us at (949) 431-0431 for a complimentary online marketing consultation.