The current pandemic has dramatically changed how businesses are operating this year. More services and products have moved online and in-person marketing methods have become a thing of the past.
In this post, we will try to wrap our heads around how this year has changed digital marketing and go through 8 trends that we can expect to see in the quickly approaching 2021.
#1 Social Media Continues to Reign Supreme
Companies should be ready to put even more resources into their social media presence. It is no question that these platforms have a strong impact on the market and can easily shape a company’s future either positively or negatively.
Digital marketers are continuing to prioritize customer retention and there’s no reason to not continue this into the new year. People are spending more time online than ever before and this includes them researching brands, products and organizations.
There are now more brand new opportunities that marketers have to engage with existing customers and reach out to new ones than ever. Social media has become too big of a marketing tool to be ignored at this point and all businesses should be using it to some extent.
#2 Increased Online Communication
Businesses have been communicating with their customers more than ever before due to the internet being able to connect the two easily.
This will continue to move forward in 2021 as people tend to distance themselves from any in-person communication, especially with people they don’t normally interact with. Using social media or email to talk with clients and customers will certainly become much more commonplace.
#3 Automated Bidding
Marketing on Google Ads has gotten more and more attention since it made its debut and has proven to be an effective way to advertise your business.
At first, it was a bit of a task and took a lot of tweaking to get everything out exactly the way you want it. Now that this process is becoming more automated, Google Ads is due for a huge bump in 2021 in terms of digital marketing.
#4 Google Listings and Search Engine Optimization
One of the most important things a small business can do to make sure they are able to be found is find a way to come up on search engines, particularly Google.
Search engines are almost always used to find out exact addresses, operating hours, and other important information on businesses and making sure this information is up to date will become even more important in 2021.
Make sure you define your business in a certain area as well because this will help your business come up in a “near me” search. Google will prioritize relevance and ensuring your business comes up first for local searches is a great idea.
#5 Employee Engagement
The ongoing pandemic has proven that keeping your employees connected and engaged with your business has become more integral to its success than ever before.
Not only that, but it has become much more difficult since some businesses are still having their employees work remotely. The focus on this will continue to grow in this coming year and there will be some very creative strategies to keep employees engaged.
It is important to provide them some kind of distraction from the stressful times that everyone is going through and you may see some zoom parties, mail-in prizes for doing good work, and plenty of other strategies to keep employees from getting burnt out from working in this new environment.
#6 Segmenting Consumers
It is always more cost-effective to retain your existing customers than to try and generate new ones. However, it is important to take into account both of these types of customers and not put all your eggs into one basket.
Putting out things like lead generation forms are going to be seen more and more in 2021 so companies can see exactly what the numbers are and whether they need to focus more funds on retaining existing consumers or trying to find new ones.
#7 Interactive Content
Interacting with your customers has always been a great method to develop brand loyalty and gaining new information about them. Now, this is going to be done more through social media and is going to become more popular this coming year.
Things like surveys, polls, games, and challenges are being used already to gauge consumer interest in certain products, your business as a whole, or simply the mindset of your target audience.
Posting interactive content is a fairly easy thing to do and makes for some good fun as well while gathering some solid information that can be useful for your business down the road.
#8 Voice Search
There is a big difference between typing something into a search engine and saying it out loud to Siri or Alexa. Using voice search has become a lot more common in recent years and most companies have not even thought about optimizing its search results.
However, next year, it is likely that many businesses will catch on to this trend and begin optimizing their results for voice searching and for normal typed searches. It is possible in later years that voice search might even overtake typed searches if this trend continues.
These 8 trends listed above are all based on how this year has reshaped the business world and made digital marketing extremely important in keeping companies on top of their game and able to stay afloat.
Of course, not all of these are guaranteed to be huge role-players in the coming year. If the pandemic comes to a halt, things will once again change dramatically and the digital marketing trends for 2022 will be much different.
However, be sure to keep in mind these 8 points when planning for next year and always keep your online presence in mind when making business decisions. Digital marketing has become more important than ever before and it looks to stay that way for a long time.
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