Regardless of the niche of your business or the type of products and services you offer, one cannot ignore the rising digital marketing trends. Till a few years ago, an official website and a Facebook business page were all a company needed to promote itself online. However, times have changed and the digital landscape has evolved, providing businesses and marketers with plenty of options.
Considering the dramatic turn of events in the last year, 2020 had marketers struggling to keep up with the latest trends. But, organisations and marketers are optimistic about 2021.
This article will take you through the top digital marketing trends in 2021 that you must know to make an online presence for your business. However, most of these digital marketing trends and strategies may not necessarily be new, but an evolution of the existing ones that you need to know!
Top Digital Marketing Trends in 2021
1. Artificial Intelligence Assistance
Artificial Intelligence (AI) can analyse the behaviour of consumers and detect their search patterns more effectively. It can also extract data from social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook to analyse how consumers look for products and services.
Although AI will be driving forces behind many other services in the future, it is currently implemented in:
- Product recommendations
- Content creation
- Email personalisation
2. Programmatic Advertising
In simpler words, programmatic advertising means using AI to target specific audiences. It works by automating ad buying. An example of programmatic ad buying is real-time bidding. It is faster, more effective, and helps increase conversion rates and lower customer acquisition costs.
3. Conversational Marketing
One of the most important digital marketing trends 2021, conversational marketing helps provide one-to-one and a real-time communication channel between marketers and consumers.
Unlike other traditional marketing strategies, conversational marketing is available across several channels. This allows brands to communicate directly with consumers at their convenience – platforms, devices, or timing that suits the consumers’ needs the best.
4. Video Marketing
If not the most effective, video marketing is one of the most important effective marketing strategies today. And is most likely to remain the same for the next five to ten years. The following statistics reveal the importance of incorporating video marketing in marketing strategies:
- 72 percent of businesses have revealed that video marketing has increased their conversion rates.
- 52 percent of consumers reveal that watching a product or service video makes them more confident in their online purchase decisions.
- 75 percent of executives said they watch videos related to their work on business platforms every week.
5. Ad-blocker Blockers
One of the most important digital marketing trends 2021, ad-blocker blockers is all about overcoming obstacles. Many marketers may face difficulty in their pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns as about 27 percent of online users are expected to use ad-blockers by 2021.
To overcome ad-blockers, first, you need to find out how big a problem these ad-blockers are for you. Ad data and analytics will help you get answers. If your ads fall victim to ad-blockers, it is recommended you adapt and figure out another helpful marketing strategy for your business.
6. Interactive and Valuable Content
Technically, this trend has been around for a while. But marketers are realising its value only now. Not only does interactive and valuable content promote engagement, but it also improves customer experience and increases customer loyalty.
Some types of interactive and valuable content that can do wonders for your brand include giveaways, surveys, quizzes, contests among others. They also increase the amount of time a user spends with your brand.
7. Influencer Marketing
A type of word-of-mouth marketing, influencer marketing has risen to be one of the effective marketing strategies over the past few years. It focuses on getting the word out about your brand through well-known celebrities and social media influencers. However, more often, the influencers are Instagram or YouTube personalities with a huge following in a particular niche.
8. Customer Segmentation
Although not one of the new digital marketing trends in 2021, customer segmentation has been around for quite some time. The idea behind it is simple – to have many small marketing campaigns targeting a specific audience instead of a small number of many marketing campaigns that target a general audience.
Through customer segmentation, marketers can group their target audience based on certain factors such as age, gender, demographics, shopping traits, etc.
9. Visual Search
If incorporated correctly, visual search can take the whole user experience to another level. It allows users to upload pictures to get more accurate search results. For instance, Google Lens is a visual search engine powered by Google that recognises landmarks and objects with the help of a camera app.
10. Voice Search
The use of voice search has increased over the last few years. It lets the user conveniently make their searches with the help of a voice search. Now that the AI is getting smarter, the number of mistakes and errors made by voice assistants such as Siri, Alexa, Cortana, and Google has reduced significantly.
11. Social Media Stories
One of the other emerging digital marketing trends in 2021 is social media stories. Started with Snapchat in October 2013, the stories feature quickly rose in popularity among users. In a few years, Instagram, WhatsApp, Skype, and Facebook incorporated this feature in their apps as well. The benefits of social media stories include:
- Constant engagement with followers
- Increased brand awareness
- Excellent opportunity to interact with the younger audience
12. Shopping on Social Media
As both social media and e-commerce are growing at a fast rate, many brands have started using the two together to increase their sales opportunities. One of the most popular social media platforms for shopping is Instagram. In 2019, Instagram unveiled the Checkout feature which allows users to purchase within Instagram. E-commerce brands can create engaging and interactive posts on their social media platforms to allow users to shop with ease.
13. Progressive Web Pages
Progressive Web Pages are websites that function like mobile apps. These apps offer functionality similar to that of mobile apps such as push notifications, fast load times, working offline, etc. With the number of mobile users increasing rapidly across the world, progressive web pages can prove to be one of the efficient digital marketing trends in 2021.
14. Website Security
If a visitor lands on your website and senses that it is not safe and secure, he/she will immediately exit from the website, thereby increasing bounce rates. As this happens regularly, an increased bounce rate will lower your business ranking in SERPs. Displaying a sign of security on your website will help understand the consumers that you take their safety seriously.
15. Long-Form Content
A Search Engine Journal study revealed that long-form content gets 77 percent more backlinks as compared to short-form content.
Typically, a blog post that is longer than 3,000 words attracts the most traffic as it offers the consumers in-depth knowledge of their questions or queries. It also reduces the chances of your target audience visiting your competitor’s websites after visiting yours.
16. Structured Data SEO
Structured data is data that is neatly organized in a way that makes it easier for search engines to categorize. Content developers can structure their data by organizing information and data into tables. When done right, structured data can help increase SEO significantly.
17. User-Generated Content
User-generated content is a great option for marketers who want to tap into the Gen Z or millennial markets. This can be done by encouraging users to share content on their social media accounts and in turn, offer them an incentive such as offers and discounts.
A survey showed that 90 percent of online shoppers said that user-generated content influenced their purchase decisions more than any other form of advertising.
The benefits of automation in marketing include:
- Improving customer loyalty and retention
- Scaling up content marketing with AI-generated content
- Optimising voice search queries
- Improving blogger outreach
19. Browser Push Notifications
An increase in push notifications has been seen in the past years. In 2019, 85 percent of online stores and E-commerce brands used web push notifications. To re-engage users who show interest in a certain brand but fail to make a purchase or a decision, notifications based on behaviours are being used.
20. Omnichannel Marketing
In 2019, omnichannel marketing was one of the most famous buzzwords. Although the buzzword may seem a little worn out now, omnichannel marketing is still one of the most popular marketing strategies.
Omnichannel marketing is a marketing strategy that involves promoting a business on different platforms to connect with users in a better way. When done right, it can provide the users with an enhanced user experience and improve brand awareness.
The aforementioned are some of the top digital marketing trends of 2021 that one cannot ignore. If you are a digital marketer, you must get yourself familiarised with the new trends and strive to embrace new strategies, tools, and technologies.
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