Goodbye and good riddance to 2020. The global pandemic had an impact on every business. From a digital marketing standpoint, what will 2021 bring? Several digital marketing leaders shared their thoughts on coming trends.
Digital business pivots may become permanent.
‚ÄúVirtual Events and Experiences for audiences to engage outside of your traditional sales messaging. We helped Mariano’s launch¬†Mariano’s Meet-Ups, Virtual Events spanning Chef Demos, Mixology Classes, and Live Music, and Tricoci market Virtual Consultations for at home treatments. Diversify your social media activity to connect with more engaged users. To that point, enrich the user experience on your social profiles by leveraging shop and other features that break down barriers towards purchasing¬†from you. We helped Tricoci¬†launch Instagram shop to complement their new ecommerce marketing program.‚ÄĚ
Social media marketing will become a top channel for purchase, instead of just discovery.¬†
‚ÄúSocial media platforms like Facebook are making it easier for consumers to go from discovery to purchase without ever having to leave the platform, creating a simple and seamless path to purchase. With social commerce continuing to grow into 2021, retail brands will have to adapt to these platforms with new rules, similar to what many did with Amazon.‚ÄĚ
Informed buyers want to buy from informed brands.¬†
‚ÄúThis means evolving even beyond the age of¬†personalization¬†and entering an age of¬†personal commerce, where consumers co-curate their experiences with brands to reflect their preferences at any given moment. They expect for brands to understand what they‚Äôve bought in the past and help them to determine what they should buy next, based on all the data that they‚Äôve consciously shared with them by engaging with their sites and channels. This is not just a matter of brands meeting consumers¬†where¬†they are; it‚Äôs about brands telling them¬†what¬†they want,¬†when they want it. If brands and retailers are going to continue collecting first-party shopper data, they will need to begin actioning it in meaningful ways, predicting what their shoppers want to see next, and understanding where shoppers are in their buying cycles to predict when they‚Äôll want to buy.‚ÄĚ
4 SEO Trends for 2021. With each new year, it is only natural to sit back and take stock of your business and where you would like it to be. This will mean laying out some strategic planning for growth and customer acquisitions for many business owners and managers.
Just a sampling of the most important SEO trends to look for in 2021 include:
- User and Search Intent ‚Äď¬†think about transitioning out of the best practices for traditional SEO. Focus on understanding what is going on in the searcher‚Äôs mind so you can take their intent and turn it toward optimization.
- Analytics, Customer Retention, and Lifetime Value ‚Äď¬†It used to be that SEO was all about traffic, but it is now much more. Google is always evolving, so you need to fill the gaps and achieve the ROI you desire.
- Page Experience Optimization ‚Äď¬†You know as well as anyone else when you visit a website that takes forever to load, or you cannot get links to work ‚Äď you go elsewhere! Ensure that you do whatever possible to create a valuable, efficient page experience for all of your visitors.
- Everything is Mobile SEO ‚Äď Today, people are on their mobile devices when searching online more than ever. If you do not have responsive web design to enhance customer experience, then you will fall behind in rankings and overall experience, losing that potential customer. Everything that you do from a search engine optimization standpoint will also need to include mobile inclusivity.
“SEO has evolved a lot over the last years. With numerous algorithm updates rolled out in 2020, we’ve continued to evolve our SEO strategy to stay on top of today’s SEO best practices for both website ranking, as well as converting visitors to customers. This year more than any, we’ve had some great success tying our clients SEO success to other forms of engagement & conversions, such as social media, email, display, video, custom landing and squeeze pages and others. “- Jeff Sherman, Owner Top Marketing Agency
Virtual events started out of necessity, but are here to stay because of ROI and accessibility.¬†
‚ÄúIn the face of the COVID pandemic, events became virtual out of necessity. As we move into 2021 and beyond, many events will stay virtual not only because of continued safety concerns, but also as a result of lessons learned in 2020. Companies found that by going virtual, they opened up their event to an entirely new audience as virtual events are more accessible than in-person events. For virtual events, visa issues, travel restrictions¬†and costs aren‚Äôt as much of a concern as¬†with¬†in-person events,¬†and many companies¬†have¬†found that this allows for higher attendance and more participation.¬†That means lower cost for more people and a higher ROI.¬†The key is to get creative and drive engagement through great speakers, rich content and some fun of course.¬†In 2021 and beyond, virtual events will¬†continue to be a popular route¬†to engage with a broad set of customers¬†as companies see the¬†many¬†benefits of online events.‚ÄĚ
Culling social media channels.
‚ÄúMany companies are starting to reduce the number of social media channels they are using to share and influence, and rightly so. With so many channels available, and many companies having tried to stay relevant on all of them, the need to declutter is almost pervasive. Reducing social media channels to only the most relevant will be not only popular but necessary.‚ÄĚ
Live interactions with virtual events.
‚ÄúVirtual events have great power but not if there is only one-way communication. There is a mistake among many associations and companies that virtual events should be broadcast versus being live. Yes, there are complications that can happen with live events, but the reward is so much greater than the risk. This is what attendees are looking for, something that can substitute, even in part, for a live event.‚ÄĚ
Using AR in digital engagement.
‚ÄúWith Facebook owning Oculus and dozens of augmented reality patents, it is only a matter of time before digital growth experts have to learn and incorporate AR into digital engagement. This is still on the periphery but now is the time to research, learn and consider how AR could be used in current digital assets.‚ÄĚ