The Top Marketing Trends of 2021

2020 has had marketers treading on strange ground, scrambling to keep up. With current events constantly dictating proceeding trends, brands and businesses have had to restrategize their approach to authenticity and relevance. Last year has made us experience it all: election drama, police brutality, a seemingly unending virus outbreak, and a mercurial economy, among many others.

With 2021 still slowly unraveling, founders, leaders, and creatives are already gearing up, braving the new normal as deftly as possible. The next few months remain uncertain, but the previous year’s string of events has allowed us to anticipate which strategies to look out for in the near future. 

Here are the leading marketing trends of 2021

Brand Activism

The urgency for businesses to take on social responsibility has never been more apparent until recently. Like several things, the political climate is evolving, and more communities are putting a premium on inclusivity and demanding what’s due to them.

Last year was an accumulation of awakenings, with numerous movements gaining unprecedented momentum. As a result, the number of corporations and startups that are more vocal about their core values are increasing. For instance, household names like Netflix and Rebook didn’t shy away from expressing their support for the Black Lives Matter movement across their multiple social media accounts.

Brands like Ben & Jerry’s and Levi’s, too, are much more transparent about their efforts on sustainability. The globe is going through sensitive transformations, both metaphorically and literally, and it is only right for industry leaders to take part in active solutions. As such, expect more brands to be open about their principles and initiating discussions on conversations that matter.

Social Media Marketing

Social media is an industry in itself. From dance crazes to video podcasts, the platforms we’ve come to love are homes to multitudes of trends and business opportunities. As such, the need to adapt smartly and efficiently is as urgent as ever, especially as newer and more powerful channels emerge.

Furthermore, social media mediums like Facebook and Instagram are making it easier for customers to acquaint themselves with new brands and products, eliminating the need to leave the platform to make a purchase. As a result, one can expect social commerce to be a more powerful force in consumerism. Simply put, a wise move for retail businesses is to double their efforts on making their products available online.

Fairly so, social media trends warrant a list of its own, but it’s worth noting that businesses that don’t invest in improving their social media presence at all will get left behind.

User-Generated Content

As the trend name reveals, user-generated content (UGC) is material that’s produced by customers. In a world where everyone can now easily produce meaningful output, one can expect businesses to highlight, commodify, and bank on the content their users make.

Since the rise of influencer marketing, UGC has become the bedrock of many businesses’ marketing strategies, with nearly 90% of brands repurposing the content their followers create. While this strategy isn’t new, lockdown restrictions and social distancing measures have been enough change for brands to reallocate their advertising budgets, making this strategy a more viable solution in the coming months.

Adidas, Audible, Squarespace, and Blue Apron are all prime examples of brands that nail the influencer marketing department.

Interactive Content

Supplementing interactive elements to your web app or social media is a terrific way to increase user engagement. Not only do you easily capture the attention of your market, but you also allow them to provide you with useful data without sounding too forceful. For example, let’s say you run a car shop. When you add a car loan calculator on your web app, you immediately offer value to your prospects by giving them a quick customized glimpse of how much they could be paying should they transact with you. On your end, you’re also afforded information about them, making it easier to run retargeted ads with them. 

Other perfect examples of interactive marketing include polls, assessments, games, contests, surveys, and videos. BuzzFeed is a superb representation of all these. Because the digital publication injects humor and novelty into their content, advertising and marketing come naturally for them, as the main drawing point of their customers is the comedic relief and entertainment they get from engaging them with their material. 

There are several ways to execute interactive components, but the most popular ones are social media contests that involve asking followers to like the picture of their favorite product or service in exchange for a prize.

If you want to take it a step further, choose to build a web app for your brand. Not only do you transform your audience’s retail experience into a more desirable encounter, but you increase your chances of brand loyalty from a more nuanced market, as well.

And because web apps harness the powers of new technology, you can rest assured that interacting with your consumers becomes an easier process.

What’s Next?

All in all, the myriad of marketing strategies we’ve come to embrace will remain useful this year. SEO, PPC, blogging, Artificial intelligence, and other celebrated practices will still play critical elements in marketing’s overall equation.

What’s important for business leaders now is to future-proof their enterprises by employing stronger digital strategies. With reliable business programs and respect for modern marketing methods, your brand will do just fine.

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