With the chaos of 2020 now behind us, it’s time to stay up for what we will count on from the subsequent 12 months.
2020 was unpredictable, to say the least. That meant that whereas a number of the traits which have been predicted pre-pandemic did find yourself coming to gentle, others didn’t emerge in any respect, with numerous compelled variations reshaping parts of the advertising and marketing panorama.
Most notably, eCommerce gross sales went by way of the roof, individuals spent lots extra time on social media, and video conferencing turned the norm. This has led to a significant shift in the way in which manufacturers join with their shoppers.
So, as we flip a nook into the New Yr, what advertising and marketing traits will proceed to permeate in 2021?
Listed below are some key traits to think about:
Keep at house orders meant occasions have been canceled, and shoppers have been unable to attend in-person occasions. They weren’t even in a position to socialize with their family and friends.
This led to an uptick within the variety of individuals tuning into live-streams, whether or not it was a branded live-stream, a reside video from their favourite celeb, or a web based workshop.
On Fb, live viewings spiked by 50% throughout lockdown durations, whereas viewings on Instagram surged 70%. TikTok use shot up in 2020, and there’s an excellent likelihood we’ll see this upward trajectory proceed to play out in 2021.
Human-drive content material like influencer live-streams can create belief, and faucet into the ‘in-the-moment’ connection that 2020 shoppers crave.
Amazon Live actually obtained going throughout the pandemic. Influencers took to the platform to advertise their favourite merchandise throughout reside occasions. What’s extra, the livestreams were shoppable, which meant viewers might make purchases whereas they have been watching.
NYX Professional Make-up ran an identical promotion, the place they invited influencers to live-stream make-up tutorials for his or her annual Delight celebrations.
The 2021 Hootsuite Social Trends report notes that:
“The neatest manufacturers will perceive the place they match into clients’ lives on social media, they usually’ll discover inventive methods of becoming into the dialog.”
On the core of that is the necessity for transparency.
It’s inconceivable for shoppers to attach with manufacturers that they see as ‘shady’ or insincere. Why would they need to put money into one thing that they’ll’t belief or don’t imagine in? That is why connection might be pivotal for manufacturers that need to stay trusted sources in 2021.
Now greater than ever, manufacturers are having to dig deep to learn the way to flourish in turbulent occasions. A report from Deloitte states that, to do that, manufacturers must “be deeply attuned to why they exist and who they’re constructed to serve”.
We’re no strangers to seeing manufacturers doing good issues, however there might be an excellent greater emphasis on this subsequent 12 months.
We’ll see extra manufacturers operating campaigns like Hilton’s #HotelsForHeroes, the place they gave away free rooms to medical staff, or Chanel’s contribution to the pandemic the place they tasked their seamstresses with making face masks.
Buyer expertise has by no means been extra vital.
Shoppers crave pleasing experiences with manufacturers which can be straightforward and memorable. They need proof earlier than they purchase they usually need to be reassured – in any case, nobody needs to make the improper choice.
Consumer-generated content material (UGC) ticks all of the packing containers in the case of connective content material:
UGC has lengthy been an efficient method for manufacturers to forge relationships with their clients and supply social proof, and this might be a standard theme in 2021 as nicely.
81% of consumers strongly really feel that firms ought to assist enhance the setting.
It’s a quantity that’s not that shocking. Over the previous couple of years we’ve seen a shift in manufacturers transferring in the direction of a extra sustainable future, whether or not it’s by way of the supplies they use, the packaging, their methods, or one thing else.
The hunt for a greener planet continues, and shoppers are actively searching for out manufacturers which can be purpose-driven and aware in regards to the setting. Because the world stays a fragile place, it is going to be key for manufacturers to reiterate their sustainability in 2021.
The Ocean Cleanup is a superb instance of a model that’s achieved this nicely. In late October, they presented their first product made solely from plastic collected from the Nice Pacific Rubbish Patch.
They used TINT to share the announcement, which outlined how the model will proceed to make use of recycled merchandise from the ocean to create stunning, sustainable merchandise. In a full circle flip of occasions, the income generated from the merchandise might be pumped again into the model’s cleanup marketing campaign.
Inclusivity additionally turned a much bigger focus in 2020, with the Black Lives Matter motion highlighting endemic points that linger inside numerous parts of society.
A study by Accenture reveals that the cultural shift in the direction of inclusivity can be impacting buy habits, with 41% of consumers shifting away from retailers which don’t replicate their views on id and variety – and 29% are keen to modify manufacturers utterly in the event that they don’t present sufficient variety.
Manufacturers which can be seen to be non-inclusive, or who don’t seem like part of the inclusivity dialog, will doubtless see impacts in 2021. On the flipside, manufacturers which overtly showcase their involvement in inclusive causes, will reap the advantages and drive deeper connections with their consumers.
An rising variety of shoppers are looking by way of voice-activated instruments like Alexa. Maybe that’s as a consequence of individuals have been caught at house, with restricted alternatives for dialog, or maybe it’s just because the sort of expertise is extra available (about one in four American homes has a sensible speaker of some variety).
But it surely’s not simply voice search that can prevail in 2021 – we will additionally count on different inventive search strategies to rise to the highest, like visible search.
Instruments like Google Lens allow shoppers can seek for no matter they’ll see. This implies entrepreneurs might want to focus much more on picture alt-text and sitemaps for photos. Over the subsequent 12 months, visuals will turn out to be more and more vital within the website positioning recreation.
It’s going to be worthwhile too: Retail Customer Experience estimates that by 2021:
“Early adopters that redesign their web sites to assist visible and voice search will enhance their digital commerce income by 30%.”
2020 additionally noticed individuals leaning on easy-to-consume content material – issues like podcasts that may be consumed on-the-go or newsletters that land immediately in subscriber’s inboxes.
Research present that 55% of Americans now hearken to podcasts, whereas e-newsletter mentions have been up 14% throughout lockdown.
Advertisers are spending more on podcasts too, which is a touch to their continued success in 2021.
Handy and readily-available content material like podcasts and newsletters will assist manufacturers join extra deeply with clients and supply a extra intimate method to keep in contact.
Take a leaf out of Nisolo’s e-book. They used their e-newsletter to attach with clients and examine in with them, earlier than offering related sources that may assist them in turbulent occasions.
The unpredictable nature of 2020 has compelled manufacturers to suppose lengthy and laborious about how they join with their clients. Store closures and stay-at-home orders meant individuals have been caught inside, which additionally meant that they have been spending much more time on-line. This has pushed manufacturers to department out and create extra human-centric methods of reaching their consumers.
Over the subsequent 12 months, we’ll see this proceed. Stay-streams will turn out to be more and more widespread, purpose-driven manufacturers that champion sustainability will rise to the highest, and UGC will stay an integral a part of each advertising and marketing technique.
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