Seven Marketing Trends To Follow in 2021

Seven Marketing Trends for 2021 by Zealous Social

Written by Kalleigh O'Togher

Kalleigh is the founder and CEO of Zealous Social.  Her expertise in marketing comes from 15 years of serving mid-size businesses in the trades, services and retail industries.

January 21, 2021

Feel overwhelmed, uncertain and a little out of whack in your business with all that’s going on right now? Not sure how to adjust your campaigns to meet the new marketing trends for 2021?

Should you keep calm and carry on? Or should you join the crowds and buy ALL the toilet paper?

I don’t have all the answers. Heck, I’m not sure anyone does. But I want you to know you’re not alone. I’m here and riding this with you. I do know that pivoting is essential for all businesses to adapt and grow with today’s marketing trends.

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve spent time speaking with many business owners in trades, manufacturing and retail to get their take on what they saw in 2020 to get a beat on where I think the marketing trends for 2021 is going.

  1. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Don’t get comfortable. The old saying “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” no longer works in today’s quickly evolving world. COVID-19 pushed us out of our comfort zone and will continue to do so now that it opened up a world of possibilities to many businesses that didn’t think were possible before COVID-19 (remote workers, hybrid of online/offline sales, automation, etc.).
  1. Digital Businesses are here to stay. This is the new way for audiences to engage with your sales message and learn about your brand, your offerings and who you are. From online classes on mixology, cooking, business, technology to home consultations with doctors and other health care professionals it opened it up to more people having access to your products and services. You can offer shopping and other features on your social media like Facebook and Instagram Shops to complement your website offerings and provide a better shopping experience for your customers.  
  1. Social media will be the top channels for purchasing. Customers are no longer just using social media for information and discovery. Facebook and Instagram have made it easy for your customers to go from information to purchase without having to leave their platform. This creates a simple and seamless path to purchase for users. As social commerce grows in 2021, brands need to learn how to utilize these platforms as part of their overall marketing efforts.

Read our blog on how to Setup Facebook Shops for Your Business

  1. Consumer Expectations have changed. They want businesses to personalize their purchasing behaviour. With all the data businesses collect on their customers, customers expect more personal buying experiences tailored to them. They want businesses to know what they’ve already bought and notify them when they are due for another order, what they need now or should want to see next. Predicting what shoppers want is the next stage in the buyer journey businesses will need to address more accurately this year. This year businesses will need to up their game and be on top of their analytics and sales cycles to meet this demand.
  1. Virtual events are here to stay. What started out as a necessity in 2020 has now become a standard. It’s provided many lessons for businesses and consumers going forward. By companies going virtual it opened their events to new audiences who would otherwise not have had access. It’s allowed events to bring that two-way communication style from live events to their virtual ones to provide a great user experience for attendees. Travel and cost restriction barriers are no longer as much of a concern. Attendance and participation are much higher and virtual events have lower overhead costs and higher ROI. Face-to-face interactions won’t completely go away but I see a hybrid approach as the new normal once we come out of the pandemic, integrating in-person with virtual providing their events to larger audiences. Going forward, businesses will need to be creative and provide great content and fun experiences to attract and engage with these larger audiences. Businesses will also need to keep up with new technology as it adapts to this new market.

Use Zoom to setup breakout rooms for your events: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/206476313-Managing-Breakout-Rooms

  1. Reducing your social media channels is not only popular but necessary. Too many companies have tried to be on all social channels and stay relevant but it hasn’t provided much success. Companies need to concentrate on relevant platforms to share and influence. This year will see businesses be more strategic on the social media platforms they choose to use for their businesses.
  1. Advertising is changing. This year we saw changes to Facebook, Instagram and Google ad platforms. Businesses are now looking at alternative platforms for their advertising campaigns. Podcasts and virtual events offer advantages for some brands to promote due to their rising popularity. Ads themselves have also changed. Ads need to be personal and consumer-focused with their message. Consumers don’t care about product and service features, only about how it will help them. Targeting needs to get more specific and analytics need to be closely monitored in order to pivot quickly to get the best ROI from your ad campaigns.

If 2020 showed us anything it’s that you have to be able to pivot and adapt to change. Marketing trends are no different. They change yearly and successful businesses stay on top of the trends and implement them quickly.

Contact me if you’d like a Free 30-minute Marketing Stimulator session where we’ll work together to create a 3-step action plan you can use in 2021.

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