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Marketing trend predictions for 2021

Marketing Trends 2021 to Keep Your Business on Top

As we approach the end of the year, we’ve put together a list of predictions for marketing trends in 2021 to help you navigate the year ahead. Purpose, trust, agility, participation and human experience are the common themes for marketing in 2021.

The year 2020 was a game-changer for businesses on a global level. Major societal shifts meant companies had to quickly adapt to big changes and innovate where possible.

Marketing plays an important role in how businesses evolve. As new technologies and techniques emerge, business leaders must find unique ways to engage with customers. Staying ahead of the game is key to reaching new and broader audiences.

User-Generated Content

User-generated content (UGC) is created by the people who use your products. It includes:

  • Videos

  • Images

  • Reviews and testimonials

  • Blog posts

  • Articles

  • Making announcements

  • Presenting a new product

  • Demonstrating product features

  • Hosting conferences

  • Partnering with influencers for a live vlog

  • Page load speed

  • Mobile experience

While User Generated Content is not a new trend, due to lockdown and social distancing this year, there has been a big increase. User-generated content is one of the most authentic, reliable, and trustworthy forms of content that you see online. Why? Because it comes directly from the user. It’s not the business that’s doing the promotion, but the customers themselves.

Anyone wanting to know about a product can learn about it through all types of content that demonstrates its uses and benefits. User-generated content is an authentic form of word-of-mouth marketing with a footprint that expands as the content is shared. It helps brands become more relatable and accessible to audiences. Audiences find user-generated content believable because it highlights practical uses and everyday situations. It builds trust in brands by reflecting the human experience. 90% of consumers when making buying decisions find user-generated content more useful than promotional emails or search results.

Furthermore, as an added benefit for marketers, user-generated content saves you production time and costs.

Live video

Live video creates the sense of being present. Brands are capitalising on this by streaming content to engage with customers.

There are plenty of streaming platforms available, each with specific features. Facebook Live and YouTube Live are among the most popular.

Video marketing increases brand outreach. A recent study revealed 87% of businesses using live video reported an increase in site traffic while 80% saw an upturn in sales.

There are many ways to use live video. These include:

  • Making announcements

  • Presenting a new product

  • Demonstrating product features

  • Hosting conferences

  • Partnering with influencers for a live vlog

Live video can be a powerful form of marketing because it helps customers associate brands with great experiences.

AI Powered Copy / Conversational Marketing Trends

Artificial intelligence is an umbrella term that covers several different technologies, like machine learning, computer vision, natural language processing, deep learning, and more.

All of these technologies help machines perform specific cognitive tasks as well as or better than humans. Most forward-thinking companies are using AI in their marketing for customer analysis, personalisation, service and product recommendations, customer engagement and retention, brand mention monitoring, lead generation, ad and content copy, email marketing and social media outreach.

Probably the most widely used form of AI is chatbots. We often think of chatbots as mildly annoying pop-ups on a site that ask us how we’re doing or if we have any questions. But in reality, companies are using AI powered chatbots to:

  • Gather information and learn from your human representative’s best conversations and deploying the most effective elements

  • Automatically answer questions on websites.

  • Contact, qualify, and follow-up leads across chat, messages, social media and email.

The benefits of integrating artificial intelligence into your business are growing and unending.

Brand Activism

Brand activism saw an increase in 2020 and is a trend that will continue to gain momentum in 2021. Many businesses are openly sharing their values and beliefs as a way to connect with customers. Some have expressed this through messaging while others are making it a part of their branding strategies.

In addition to believing in the brands they support, customers now expect shared social consciousness. This form of social impact is here to stay. Research indicates 76% of consumers want a company’s advertising to represent diversity and inclusion. To go along with that, 54% are less likely to support companies whose values don’t align with theirs.

Brand activism affects how customers make buying decisions and is an important indicator to watch.

Many brands are actively speaking up about environmental and social issues. These resonate with consumers and demonstrate a commitment to what is important to audiences.

These messages are often delivered through Facebook posts, tweets and other social media messages. Customers have the opportunity to react to and comment on posts, which starts a dialog and keeps everyone engaged.

Brands and customers who once kept opinions to themselves are speaking out. They are becoming activists for their values and beliefs.

The key is authenticity. The issues a brand tackles should align with the actions that are carried out. Listen to our Podcast 3 for more information about Brand Activism Marketing.

Google Marketing Trends 2021

Google Core WebVitals are Google’s new ranking factor. This is expected to become a part of the New Page experience in 2021.

Google Core WebVitals centre around real world experiences of users. These include things such as page load speed and mobile experience.

Think of this information as a set of factors that influence the user experience on a particular page. Data gathered from Google Core WebVitals are a part of the bigger picture of how Google evaluates pages.

According to a recent study, pages that meet the Google Core WebVitals thresholds are 24% less likely to be abandoned by users. This means more website traffic and in turn, more relevant leads and conversions.

As 2021 approaches, consider adding these marketing trends to your campaigns. Make them a part of your overall strategy for business continuity.

Combine available technologies to leverage the power of marketing. Invest in these trends as a means of moving forward. The payoff will mean increased opportunities for growth and a greater understanding of the people you serve.

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