In the last decade, digital marketing channels have been steadily prioritized over traditional marketing channels for businesses. There are no signs of this trend slowing down in 2021. The side effects of the COVID-19 pandemic with respect to digital marketing have created big shifts in how we do business, receive personalized advertising messages, and how often consumers shop online over in-store.
These times of uncertainty have brought about the demand for upgraded communication strategies for businesses across the board. This article will cover the top five digital marketing trends businesses should leverage in 2021 and beyond.
“Businesses that are slow to adapt to up and coming digital marketing trends will find it difficult to grow their customer base and optimize their customer experience moving forward” Derek Distenfield of GSD Venture Studios.
AI-Powered Digital Marketing
Currently, many successful businesses are using artificial intelligence tools to automate and optimize different stages of their marketing efforts and customer journey. In the last three years alone, AI-powered chatbots have become so common on websites that, according to an Oracle survey, 80% of businesses plan to deploy some type of chatbot by 2021.
Advancements in AI and the rise of messaging apps have created an eco-system for chatbot marketing to thrive, thus automating customer service activities with 24/7 support, scheduling, troubleshooting, and helping customers with purchase decisions.
Additionally, chatbots can be leveraged for conversational marketing strategies by making the process of generating and nurturing leads faster and much more efficient.
Furthermore, chatbots are expected to help reduce business costs by up to $8 billion by the year 2022.
Aside from chatbots, there are many other AI-powered tools being leveraged to create digital marketing campaigns in 2021. These tools come with a range of benefits, including establishing communication between customers and businesses, predicting demand, tracking sales, and analyzing customer data such as behavioral patterns when interacting with websites and ads.
Automating these processes will significantly reduce the workload of employees, freeing up their time to focus on more complex tasks. By the end of 2021, experts expect at least 60% of all marketers globally will use AI-powered tools to develop advanced marketing strategies.
Enhanced Customer Experience
In 2021, high-quality customer experiences will be a non-negotiable for businesses. Sales, discounts, and exclusive deals are not a long-term, sustainable solution. From personalized shopping to a hassle-free checkout process, the customer experience will continue to have a profound influence on digital marketing efforts.
Given the fact that over 51% of consumers world-wide shop on mobile devices, creating mobile-friendly websites and apps are a must when it comes to providing smooth and seamless shopping experiences. Beyond investing in mobile marketing, businesses will need to capitalize on other details designed for convenience, such as voice search. This can be done by incorporating voice search-friendly keywords on their website. With the rise of virtual assistants such as Alexa and Siri, more consumers are searching for products and services using the voice functionality that these devices are equipped with.
Targeted and Personalized Advertising
Targeted advertising has been around for a long time. However, with the introduction of automation and other AI-powered tools, businesses will be able to target even more specific audiences. An example of this is real-time bidding where websites, search engines, and social media platforms can obtain advertising inventory on a per-impression basis while AI automates ad purchases.
Video Content is King
The last decade will be known as the time period where video became more important than written content and audio in the digital marketing industry. Digital marketers have to emotionally connect, develop trust, and convey value from the first impression, and video content has the power to do this in 10 seconds or less.
Most consumers prefer to watch videos about a product or service before making their purchasing decision. In 2021, video will continue to be an important strategy for digital marketing.
Augmented and Virtual Reality Experiences
Augmented reality and virtual reality technology will ultimately transform the way businesses communicate and interact with their customers. A VR headset allows customers to visit a “virtual shop or store” from anywhere in the world, creating super-realistic shopping experiences. Businesses can also create interactive websites and sales pages. These technologies are still developing and more advancements will be made when 5G is fully deployed.
In conclusion, there are a lot of exciting advancements rolling out that will be leading the way for the success of these digital marketing trends. It is essential for business owners and CEOs to take some or all of these trends into consideration when improving their customer experience, leveraging competition, and developing their plans for growth in 2021 and beyond.
Originally published in BootcampRankings